Violation of the Traditions?

  1. Hi all...been awhile!!!

    Locally, (NE Ohio) we are in need of nurse or medical professional recovery support groups. I tend to stick with AA in my area and of course have no ill will towards any other fellowships. Anyways, a few nurses around here are looking to start a local nurse support AA meeting once a week. I asked someone else in the program for a little support and was told sorry but something like that breaks at least two traditions and seems exclusive. Any opinions? I didn't see it as any different than womens or mens meetings or gay only meetings but the argument was made that technically those types of meetings break tradition too.

    Like a typical alcoholic, I can take a million supportive comments but I'll really worry about the ONE person who was negative towards the situation. Whattya'll think?
  2. Visit MizChelleRN profile page

    About MizChelleRN

    Joined: Apr '09; Posts: 94; Likes: 137
    from US
    Specialty: 12 year(s) of experience in diabetic education, dialysis


  3. by   pippi40
    I have been in Ipn and as a result aa for over a year. I can tell you both are important but so different. For me the important thing early in recovery was to see that I am not alone. The first meeting I went to I met a nurse I used to work with. If she was holed up in an exclusive nurse aa meeting I would never have met her. Thinking I was smarter than others and different or better than others because I was a nurse kept me iny addiction longer. I find the amazing part of aa is that people do appear outwardly so different, but are the same. I know when I am around others nurses it is hard not to talk shop. That's not what keepsMe sober. I wish you luck in you endeavors. I think it is important to the newcomer to really see all types of people. The big book says something like we are people who would not normally mix. But we are like those who have survived a disaster. That is so true and I don't want to mess with perfection...
  4. by   SuesquatchRN

    I don't see a violation of any traditions there.

    Personally, I live in a very small town and would love the opportunity to meet with others whose experiences and futures are closely intertwined with mine, as in no one is going to report a cashier to the BON for attendance at a meeting.

    I see no problem with requesting that attendees at a meeting be of a certain group as long as those members would help someone who didn't fit should they show up, in whatever form that help might take.
  5. by   jackstem
    There are numerous forms of "Caduceus" groups throughout the country. The ones I've been involved with have generally take the framework of a 12 Step meeting, but did not rely solely on the AA style. In effect they became a "12 Step like" group but were not actually an AA or NA group. The biggest problem I've encountered is these meetings can very easily turn into a whiny complaint session. There are numerous publications available on the development of small support groups and maintaining an effective style to accomplish what's intended, strengthening recovery for it's members.

    Good luck!

  6. by   elkpark
    I have no personal experience and my only knowledge of 12-step groups is professional (I've worked in psych and chemical dependency for many years), but I know that many cities have specialty physician/nurse (and other health professional) AA/NA groups (or maybe they are the "AA-like" groups Jackstem refers to) -- so somebody must think it's okay to do ...
  7. by   lifeistweet
    We have a cadudeus group here in Mid-Michigan. In fact we have expanded the meetings to twice a month instead of once a month. Love the meetings. A local hospital allows us to use one of their conference rooms free. The meeting is open to all medical professionals. The format is AA/NA but we always discuss issues related to our profession and recovery. I am very glad to have my caduceus meeting and the support of other nurses and doc's in recovery. It's also a nice place to network. In fact, the HPRP contracts in Michigan require a once a month caduceus meeting.
  8. by   debnky
    Who ever told you that is breaking 2 traditions is not informed. There is absolutely nothing wrong with announcing it. Having said that you must be careful how you go about it. I don't believe you would want it in a where and when. Word of mouth is best. Make it CLOSED meeting. Typically this is how I have seen it done in this area. Good Luck. I live in southern Cincinnati area.
  9. by   bezany
    your group does not have to be affiliated with na/aa, you can start a nurse support group for nurses in recovery and still attend aa/na meetings. IPN in florida requires weekly attendance at both a facilitator led nurse support group and 3 twelve step meetings a week. I get different things from the two places and there is a clear difference. all of the things i do to work on myself are good and in combination help me to grow and become a better, more responsible and productive member of society. good luck in your endeavor.
  10. by   LilRedRN1973
    I'm confused....are you talking about something separate from the nurse support group required by your IPN? My state requires me to attend a weekly group that consists of nurses who are all in recovery. Is this what you are asking about or another group, entirely separate from this?
  11. by   lifeistweet
    In Michigan we are required to attend a nurse support group lead by a facilitator weekly and a monthly caduceus group. We have womens and mens AA meetings, I don't see why a group for medical professionals would be a violation. Maybe that's why our group is held at a hospital conference room. We follow the AA/NA format at our meetings and usually have casual conversation after the meeting. I really enjoy my caduceus meetings and find them very helpful to my recovery.
  12. by   texasgirl77
    I don't think it is a violation of the traditions to have a specialty meeting. At the rehab facility I was in there was a weekly health professionals meeting and it was at the same time as the regular AA meeting. I found it very comforting to be around fellow nursing professionals as so many of my questions regarding the impaired nurse program were answered. As long as you offer the meeting at the same time as another that way a person can choose which one to attend and no one is excluded. I wish we had specialty meetings here in the Houston area because I don't feel that I can relate much in the regular AA/NA meetings.
  13. by   lifeistweet
    Start a meeting! It's mot hard. We published the time on the state AA sight and asked a hospital to use one of their conference rooms and they were more than happy to let us, free! Actually we have expanded to twice a month. It may be small at first but we've gained more people as we've gone along. The meetings are nice.
  14. by   MizChelleRN
    Hi ya'll!!! I forgot I posted this question here!!! Thanks for all the great responses! My contract with the Alternative program does not require me specifically to attend nurse professional support groups per se. It only requires 2 12 step meetings per week, or whatever my treatment center (completed) or probation (which I am on until June 7th) requires me to do. The closest thing to a professional group is about an hour away.

    Turns out I play softball on the afternoons this meeting is getting together so I don't know how many I'll attend until after the season...

    But I think they are starting out meeting as just a support group, not exactly affiliated with aa or na which helps get it off the ground. We still have to help pay rent to keep the doors open and issues like that. I'm curious to see what happens next.

    I do see the opposing point in a way. My sponsor gets on me because I keep seeing myself as "different", she says to please try to stop seeing the differences and just see us all as sick people with a common illness. When you see yourself as different or special you seperate yourself from the group as a whole. But I am really seeking out a specific kind of support! ~the kind I find here on AllNurses/nurses in recovery. I do think we have a special set of challenges we could use a group of like people to tackle.

    Ahhh I might be rambling. Nice to see you all on here. xo