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(#1567) Donna W (Greenville, SC)
Sept 2003 in Myrtle Beach, SC  EVENT: 32nd Fellowship by the Sea  TYPE: AA, Female, Story

Sober 21 years since 7/28/1982, wife of Sterling W, one of the characters in AA, Donna was born an only child in Dallas, TX. She felt inadequate from the very beginning. There was no God in her home.

She learned to stuff feelings early. The family moved often finally settling in Danville, VA.

She started drinking in high school but never drank normally. She went to college at Fuhrman - a strict Baptist school - and was miserable until she found the drinkers and her future husband. He was a lay minister at the time.

He became very unspiritual shortly into the marriage. She got a technical degree and so had a profession. They had a baby - somewhat unexpected. She started drinking to cope.

At 24 she took a leave of absence and put her son in day care. She drank all the time and entered the local mental hospital in Greenville, SC. But they never addressed her drinking.

She drank for another 12 years. In 1972 at age 26, she divorced. Booze helped her cope with the anger.

She was determined to manage life on her own and "it nearly killed me until I found you people."

She began to drink alone whenever she could especially when her son was not at home.

She never tried to quit because deep down she knew she couldn't. She lost her job and was unemployed for three months getting a job in pharmaceutical sales.

Alcohol became unpredictable. She started to get physically worse and to rationalize more. Her ex-husband threatened to take his son away if she did not do something about her drinking.

She was told she had two choices - treatment or AA. She chose AA and went to four meetings the first week and came home with a Big Book.

She drank for six more weeks but read the Big Book during that time. Then alcohol stopped working.

(49 min) (17.1 MB) (id#1567)