A sponsor is someone that can help you look at yourself and see the part that you have played with addiction. I have found that a sponsor has helped me with every aspect of my life. I can still be the same person that can be judgmental even if it is not with the addict. It can be with the person who cuts me off on the road, co-workers and other family members. I have to change my actions and reactions not only with the addict.
When looking at the 12 steps which is for me, the 12 traditions which is to understand how the Naranon group works, and the 12 concepts which helps the understanding the Naranon world services.
My sponsor had me worked the step that corresponds with the tradition. When working step 1, I worked tradition 1; step 2, then tradition 2, etc.
As I was working with my sponsor. I found that there were many things going on that I could not speak about at the meeting or else needed more time with someone one on one. I had gone through three sponsors before the 4th one which I really clicked with. Just a personal observation, you may find a sponsor and you may find that it is not working, that is okay. A good sponsor will not take it personally.
My sponsor and I are not good friends. She is not someone that I would go shopping with, she is someone that I can share everything and I know it will not go any further. Especially when I worked the 4th step and shared with her when I did the 5th step.
My sponsor has been there during the time when I did not know for sure if I was staying with my husband who is my qualifier. She has been there when my sister and Dad died, she came to calling hours and spent a lot of time on the phone with me. She was the first person I talked to when my Dad died and that was close to 1 in the morning. As when NA talks about calling your sponsor before you use, it worked the same way with me, because I can have stinking thinking and justify what I do by saying that I am not an addict, just want to make sure that he is doing what he should. My sponsor told me that I had no control over others and to accept where they are at and turn them over to God. It has been hard for me at the beginning and sometimes I feel I know what is best. Through working with a sponsor I created a God box where I wrote down things that I was trying to fix and turned them over. I sometimes thought that God was not moving fast enough for me, but I had to realize that even when there wasn't a change in people it was God saying no. It is progress not perfection, and even when I turned back to detective I told on myself to my sponsor and as the years went on, it did not happen as much.
When I call my sponsor, she does not give me advice but let's me talk it out. I found the answers that I was looking for within me. Working the steps with a sponsor has really helped me learn more about me and that is so important that I work on me and let others take care of themselves. When I was doing my 4th step, my sponsor had me point out my good characteristics along with my character defects, she told me that she found this helps out, so you are not seeing all negative with you.
I think it is important to find someone outside the meetings, because i feel that was the only way I could grasp the program the way I did. I became secretary, treasurer, currently now in the outreach program for the community and also GSR (group service representative) for the region, I really do not believe that I would have came as far as I have come if I had not worked with a sponsor and wanted to work the steps with someone outside the meeting.
Our group has an once a month meeting for the steps prior to the regular meeting. This is helping people to understand the steps and I hope this will lead to people to look for sponsors. If you cannot find a sponsor in your area, you can go to naranonforum.com and besides being online meetings, there are online sponsors. You never know that there could actually be someone in your area and you just don't know it.