Saved From Drowning By SA’s Spiritual Toolkit

After more than 40 years of drowning in a vast ocean of sexaholism that has a bottomless abyss, I was relieved to finally have a rescue swimmer (my sponsor) swim to my aid. I had the desperation of a drowning man and listened and followed his suggestions without question. The spiritual toolkit he was laying at my feet had immediate results. Though they were subtle results, I could feel the support, like a life-ring, building one day at a time.

Now years later my sponsor and this program have taught me to be a rescue swimmer in turn. In fact, if I do not perform this life saving service, I will find myself back in the depths of the abyss. Providing the spiritual toolkit for others, strengthens my own spiritual tools and keeps them honed so that the needed Power is there.

The Big Book warns us “To spend too much time on any situation is to deny some other sexaholic an opportunity to be rescued.” (AA 96) Sponsoring is exactly like that for me. When I look out over the vast ocean of sexaholism, there are many drowning people. Some do not wish to be rescued, and some want the suffering to stop but are not quite ready to do the work. Then there are those that have the Gift Of Desperation (GOD acronym). They are easy to spot and from the moment I reach them they have the look of desperation and the willingness to follow instructions. They grasp at the tools with the desperation of a drowning man, they listen intently and start applying the principles of those tools and with that, they begin to feel buoyancy instead of the powerful pull of the bottomless dark abyss.

So, as they practice the spiritual tools, I swim from one prospect to another giving them new life saving tools. Each sponsee then practices the principle of that new tool and they begin to discover the Power in each passing day. I can only work with only so many dying sexaholics and have to watch the horrible suffering of those still needing help. Every now and then I see one of my prospects slow down or stop practicing the principles of the tools and watch as they start to go under.

When I was a new sponsor, I swam over in a valiant effort to save the sponsee, encouraging them to keep fighting, keep practicing. Some regained the process, but there were those that only continued with half measures, resting on their laurels. In some cases I swam over and held them above the water, but soon realized the more I did that, the more the drowning sponsee let up doing the work. He was being held up and the desperation had been relieved to an extent he was no longer feeling the danger of the abyss.

After many exhaustive attempts to save the drowning SA, I realized that I was working harder than the sponsee. That my other sponsees that were willing to do the work, were not getting the next necessary spiritual tool, and that there were still many desperate drowning sexaholics all around me that were willing to practice the spiritual principles so that they could be set free, but had no one to help them.

I had to be willing to let the unwilling sexaholic go under and gulp a couple of deep incapacitating suffocating drinks of the ocean. Sometimes such a person would surface with a new desperation to continue the process, but sometimes he did not resurface and sank to deeper depths of the abyss or perished.

I had to learn, heartbreakingly so, that I have no Power and that I am no one’s solution. That each sponsee has to find a Power greater than himself through working and practicing the spiritual principles and then helping others by being of service. In the end, I realized that the work I am doing is really about keeping me connected to the Power. In many instances as I swim out to another sexaholic in the ocean, I myself am hearing from that SA in the fellowship, exactly what it is I am needing just for that day.

Dennis T., Alaska, USA

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