- This topic has 7 replies, 5 voices, and was last updated 6 years ago by Heidi Quist.
December 11, 2015 at 7:19 am #10451Jodi LParticipant
A while back I took on a position of T.A.S. Chairperson – this is our telephone answering service for after office hours. In short, I schedule groups to answer phones as part of step 12 service commitment. Not too bad too do….Except…..only half the groups will do this…then I run into problems on a continual basis of people only doing certain days of the week, no weekends, 1 weekend a month etc….Someone always ends up calling me because they “Don’t have anyone to answer the phones” They call me to find someone else to do it. I am feeling like no one wants to do any work, just pass the buck, let someone else do it.
It’s driving me crazy and I find that I am feeling resentful to a whole group because of their lack of commitment. I think I am going to have to resign. It’s already been discussed that I can only do the schedule and that’s it……it only took 2 days for someone to call me with a problem again…. I feel like telling them to fix it themselves, it’s not my responsibility. IT’s their’s as a group.
I have prayed for help, I have asked for guidance, and I have asked many times for myself to be patient and tolerant but I find my ability to tolerate this type of stuff is almost non existent.
Any suggestions?December 14, 2015 at 10:04 pm #10452Tom GParticipant
Jodi, I totally feel and understand your frustration. I, too, get frustrated when I take on a commitment and am way more committed to the task being done well than others are. I can take it personally when the group doesn’t follow through on their commitments.
That’s when I step back and remember the meaning of the Serenity Prayer. I can’t change others, I can only change myself. I’ve accepted that, in general (there are exceptions), getting a group of recovering alcoholics (and addicts) to follow through on a commitment is like herding cats. Different people in different places of recovery aren’t going have the same level of follow through of commitments. We have a hard enough time committing to our own sobriety and sane-ness of life!
In your specific case, it may be prudent to spread the responsibilities to others. In stead of the folks calling you when they can’t follow through on their commitment, maybe they should contact other folks themselves to fill in. Get you out of the loop for finding people to fill in.
I would also suggest creating a “call tree”, that lays out for people who they can call within the group to find their own replacement. Again, getting you out of the loop.
You sound very frustrated and resentful. Remember, nothing kills the alcoholic more than resentment. Take this situation to learn why you are so resentful. Do a 4th step to learn what your part is in this situation. Maybe then you will be able to change the only person you can truly change – you. The commitments may not get fulfilled, but you won’t personally be resentful about it. Remember, we can only be responsible for ourselves; not others.
Good luck and ‘keep coming back’! Tom G.December 17, 2015 at 5:06 am #10453Jodi LParticipant
Thanks Tom for your suggestions. I agree with members finding their own replacement and I am going to put that forward to Intergroup in the new year.
Yes, I have become resentful to the whole situation. I do perceive that others should do as I think they should do in this case – time to step back and do a 4 for sure. I wish the weather hadn’t turned so bad with the snow, I wanted to go to my meeting tonight, but it was unsafe to drive.
Thanks again and I will take your advice.
JodiDecember 17, 2015 at 6:40 am #10454Tom GParticipant
If you can’t get to a meeting tonight, check out the Joe and Charlie Big Book Study at the bottom of the home page of this website. I find they lift my spirits when I’m down and can’t get to a meeting. Remember, you aren’t alone and certainly not the first person to go through this!
Also, keep in mind that, even though some commitments have elements that are a pain in the ass, you are aiding the still suffering alcoholic.December 21, 2015 at 7:47 pm #10455Heidi QuistKeymaster
Jodi – I get this…when running on volunteering and dealing with people are “trying” to get/stay sober and things always get dropped and people don’t show up. I always think okay I have my commitment I can’t take on others but whatever is my commitment I fulfill it and then when it’s done, it’s done. I have taken positions before where I always have to back up those who don’t show and it’s never fun but I remember this is my commitment we show up when others don’t otherwise this program would never work. I hope everything works out for you. Resentments are a drag, I always to talk to my sponsor about it and let it go as soon as I can. – HDecember 23, 2015 at 7:24 pm #10456Holly SParticipant
I’m new to this list but reading your post about frustration I immediately identify with your experience. I belong to a volunteer spiritual community and have a leadership position where I need to get volunteers to fill shifts at events. Many times, I can’t get any volunteers and I either end up serving myself or the position is not filled. The event goes on but the gap is there. I try to remind myself that this is a spiritual practice and being lonely, feeling left out is sometimes part of the practice. I have no solutions for you except to leave the position unattended, which is an option for me but may not be appropriate in your situation. Other than that, all I can offer is my support. You’re not alone. I can totally relate to the hurt, resentment, loneliness, and disillusionment.December 27, 2015 at 6:26 am #10457mary dunkinParticipant
Love reading your responses!! you show great enthusiasm and knowledge and give great advise!! Keep up the good Work!!December 30, 2015 at 12:27 am #10458Heidi QuistKeymaster
Yeah I totally understand where you are coming from I have been in the same situation many times. I realize there are times when I can not control others and I have struggled with that my whole life! Just trying to get people to simple things sometimes ends up being a HUGE task! Thanks for the share!