AA Phone Meetings

The coronavirus crisis has hit everyone hard, but for those struggling with alcoholism, this pandemic has brought on unique challenges.  Social distancing means that the lifeblood of the Alcoholics Anonymous program has been fundamentally changed. 

As daily life has changed recently, we’ve all been forced to think about the role of human interactions in our lives. For many recovering alcoholics, the fellowship they find at in-person meetings plays a crucial in their continued sobriety.  

So, what can be done?  Below are 5 benefits of continuing your recovery via AA phone and/or virtual online meetings.

1. AA Phone Meetings Offer Fellowship

We all know there are 12 steps to follow, but for many people, the relationships they create and maintain at AA are the real benefit. Even if you can’t be physically together to give each other a hug or handshake, it’s crucial to maintain your important relationships digitally.

No, it’s not quite as good. But, it is infinitely better than nothing!  

The lack of interaction is often what brings on the desire to relapse. So, don’t underestimate the value of talking to your peers. Just talking to your AA group, even on the phone, can do wonders for your mental health and stamina to fight temptation. 

2. Opens Up New Relationships

The switch to online or phone-based meetings offers a unique chance to meet new people you might never have encountered before. 

Perhaps you’re very content with your current relationships–that’s great! But if you want to branch out, this is the time.

Online resources, such as through AA online intergroupother 12-step online groups, or on our District 22 website for online meeting resources are great places to start.

3. Can Join More Targeted Groups 

Joining an online AA meeting doesn’t just let you meet more people, it can also facilitate joining a more targeted group meeting.  For example, within the AA Online Intergroup there are specific groups for women, men, young people, LGBT people, and many others. 

If your normal, in-person group doesn’t offer this kind of focused attention, going online is a wonderful chance to try it out.  

4. Can Attend More Meetings

Recovery looks a little different for each person, and for some, a daily (or even more!) meeting is what they need.  Luckily, in many areas, this is typically possible. But for those in rural areas or those that are less mobile, getting to multiple in-person meetings is difficult.

The huge rise in demand for remote AA meetings during this pandemic has created the silver lining of virtually unlimited meetings to join at any time of day. 

Take advantage of this and log on as often as you need to.

5. Allows More Anonymity

Finally, if nerves or embarrassment normally prevent you from participating, a phone call to a remote AA group allows great anonymity.  You can be as forthcoming about your personal life or identity as you’re comfortable with. 

Also, with the phone option, as compared with Zoom or other video-conferencing options, there is no visual element.  Your fellow group members will only hear your voice. 

Keep it Up

While circumstances have changed for attending AA meetings, there are actually some benefits to trying out AA phone meetings.  Keep it up, and stay focused on that next coin.

It’s not exactly the same as the in-person experience, but the increased options for remote meetings offer a great way to keep your recovery going strong.

Originally Posted by Token Shop on 5/24/2020

Donuts on the Promenade

donuts on the promenade

Y O U  D O N U T  W A N T  T O  M I S S  T H I S . . .


August 30th @ Noon

Guest Speaker: Phil C. from Elgin, IL
will share his experience strength and hope @ 12:45 pm

Join Us for Coffee, Donuts and Fellowship
in a Responsible Outdoor Setting at the Elgin Alano Club
73 S. Riverside Drive, Downtown Elgin, Illinois


Fun in Recovery Game Night

Spiritual Awakening Group presents:

Fun in Recovery – GAME NIGHT

  • Board Games
  • Cards
  • Music
  • Fellowship
  • Food

Date: Every 1st and 3rd Fridays

Time: 9:30 pm til Midnight

Contact: Rory G. 224-387-9837

**Donations Welcomed**

We Are Not Saints Convention

We Are Not Saints


January 17th – 19th, 2020

Holiday Inn Chicago – North Shore
5300 W. Touhy Avenue Skokie, IL 60077

Preregister preferred by January 11th

AA Meetings & Panels throughout the weekend *speakers subject to change
Complimentary hospitality room and coffee (Bring your own coffee mug or water bottle)

Download Convention Flyer

Tales of a High-Bottom Alcoholic

By Jackie Monahan 05/17/19 – 

Having a high bottom can be more dangerous because it can go undetected for life. You can end up just living a soulless life. 

Jackie Monahan with friends.
It’s my job every day to remind myself that my life is so much more rewarding now. Cash and prizes are just extras, the real rewards are free and deeply fulfilling.

When I first got sober someone referred to me as having a “high bottom.” A friend, trying to be funny, yelled out, “that’s just because she has long legs!”

I was then told that a high bottom meant I had not caused too much damage to myself or others while I was drinking, but I feel like that’s subjective. A “low bottom” does not really leave much open to interpretation: jail, interventions, hospital, losing your family, your job, your home. You have to decide: get sober or suffer terrible consequences, one of which might be death.

A person experiencing a high bottom may not appear to be suffering outwardly, but inside life can be unbearable, unmanageable, or just not as good as it could be. My periodical heavy drinking was interfering with my quality of life and I had had enough. Surviving isn’t half as fun as thriving, not just financially but emotionally and physically.

When I first got sober I was sort of mad I didn’t have a low bottom; I might have gotten sober sooner and I would know for sure I had a problem. I was also mad that my idea of fun had to change. I wore beer goggles to view my whole life. Anything was tolerable if there was a “reward” later—later that night, later that week, or later that month. If I could look forward to cutting loose at some point, the rest of life seemed more bearable.

I co-wrote and co-starred in a film called The Foxy Merkins. It went to Sundance, sold out premieres, and was nominated for an Independent Spirit Award. I drank on and off when I was writing, filming, and at all the premieres. In every situation, I felt like something was missing and I would drink more to get to the place of feeling complete…but it never came. Drinking had stopped being fun or gratifying because I wasn’t connected to myself. For me, that was a low bottom. I want and need to be fully connected to great moments in my life.

Some of my friends/enablers still try to get me to drink and don’t see what the big deal is, while other friends say “if Jackie can quit drinking, anyone can do it.” It’s not black or white, and that gray area almost kept me drinking for life. I can always point to someone else who has a worse drinking problem. If you have cancer, you’re going to treat it no matter how minor it is. Your mind isn’t trying to tell you to look at how bad the other guy’s cancer is. No one’s saying “your cancer is nothing in comparison. Stop being a baby. You can moderate cancer. Forget about it.” That is what my brain did for years, and what my enablers told me: “That guy is falling down drunk. Have you ever fallen anywhere? NO. Then you are not an alcoholic.”

When I first got sober I thought “why me?” Today I still wonder “why me,” but it’s more “why am I so lucky to get to live in the moment and to feel all of my feelings?” When I finally got to this place, I stopped being mad that I did not have a clear low bottom. It sounds ridiculous to me now but I had been really frustrated about it. I thought: “I am doing this program with all I got, I should be able to half-ass it because I have not caused as much wreckage as most people.” That is an example of my crazy alcoholic diseased thinking.

Now I know everyone has a different bottom. Every day of my life, my head tells me I can drink and I have to remind it I don’t even want to drink. My mind wants to kill me: it only leaves me alive to have a vehicle to run around in. It is my job every day to remind myself that my life is so much more rewarding now. Cash and prizes are just extras, the real rewards are free and deeply fulfilling.

Being honest and useful to the world is priceless. It’s easy to sleep at night when I am not lying to anyone, especially myself. Even if I’d never experienced any external repercussions from lying, it took a toll on me, because I knew. There is nothing like going to sleep at night with a clear conscience.

When I heard that they might be putting high-bottom stories in the Big Book, I experienced a range of emotions. I was happy that other high bottoms will find stories they can relate to in the book. My ego, on the other hand, went nuts: WHAT?!! I would have killed to have heard high-bottom stories when I came in. I might have gotten sober sooner. Or maybe my dad might have been able to get sober. But for today, I am not waiting to blow off steam. I don’t feel that I deserve to drink because I have been wronged. That’s how I used to live. If something went “wrong” I had to have a drink.

I never want to make blanket statements, these are my opinions and they change often. At no time do I want to claim that my opinions are set in stone. As my perception continues to grow, my opinions will change for the better.

“Normal” drinkers are people who never or rarely suffer consequences from drinking. They rarely get drunk, nor do they ask themselves if they have a drinking problem. They never feel they must learn to moderate their use. High-bottom drinkers can hold down a job, they can have relationships, and no one gives them an intervention; but their souls deteriorate over time. They tell themselves they will learn to moderate. High-bottom drinkers are usually surrounded by other functioning alcoholics and enablers—people who do not want the person with alcoholism to get better because that means they will have to look at themselves, and they won’t look better in comparison anymore.

Having a high bottom can be more dangerous because it can go undetected for life. You can end up just living a soulless life. Everything seems fine, but you never feel real gratification or get to know the real you or the greatness you are capable of.

With a low bottom, people are forced to quit drinking: they have to or they will die. High bottoms aren’t necessarily facing death, but they have to quit to really live. At least I did. Things still don’t go perfectly, but how boring would that life be? I now do my best to welcome my life challenges. I now know how to deal with them head-on, and if I don’t I have a crew of new friends that can help me help myself. Now, fun is always being in the present moment, connected to all that is, and not trying to figure out the next drink.

Life is not perfect, but at the same time, it kinda is.