Our Guiding Philosophy
Sometimes we must sacrifice what we want as individuals for what is best for the group and for AA as a whole. By group conscience, we rely on the Twelve Traditions of Alcoholics Anonymous to guide how Grateful Recovering Online Women operates. The Traditions keep A.A. alive, allowing us to stay sober and to carry the message to the alcoholic who still suffers.
- Our Guiding Philosophy – Our philosophy as an AA group and how we enact AA Traditions in Cyberspace (on this page)
- How to Grow with Us – How to join us
- Email Etiquette – Our guidelines for communicating in cyberspace
- FAQ – Frequently asked questions
Traditions in Cyberspace
Following are the Twelve Traditions of A.A. The description beneath is our group conscience regarding each tradition’s application to our online A.A. meeting.
- “Our common welfare should come first; personal recovery depends on A.A. unity.”
While any dynamic A.A. group is bound to have some conflict and disagreement at times, our experience in online meetings is that disagreement can quickly get out of hand. Without unity we die. Therefore, we do not tolerate disrespectful, aggressive or abusive posts. Our common welfare comes first. Individuals who display a pattern of disruptive behavior toward group members may be unsubscribed from the list. See our guide for e-mail etiquette.
- “For our group purpose there is but one ultimate authority – a loving God as He may express Himself in our group conscience. Our leaders are but trusted servants; they do not govern.”
The decisions that affect GROW are based on the spiritual expression of our group conscience. We have faith in the ability of our trusted servants to perform the tasks necessary to carry out these decisions because we have faith in the second Tradition.
- “The only requirement for A.A. membership is a desire to stop drinking.”
GROW has no financial, social, cultural or background requirements. We are a specialized, closed A.A. group for women who are sober or who express a desire to learn how A.A. might help them stop drinking.
- “Each group should be autonomous except in matters affecting other groups or A.A. as a whole.”
It is this ability to govern itself that gives each A.A. group its own unique personality. However, as a group and as individuals we must adhere to certain principles in order to survive. We believe this to be especially important here in Cyberspace. This tradition also allows our group to adopt guidelines that will enhance our function as an E-mail group. We must always carefully consider how our group conscience decisions may affect other online groups and A.A. as a whole.
- “Each group has but one primary purpose–to carry its message to the alcoholic who still suffers.”
In Cyberspace it is easy to become distracted from our primary purpose. GROW enjoys both on- and off-topic posts, and we find Tradition 5 to be especially helpful when considering whether an off-topic post is appropriate to send to the entire list. There are also a few items that we respectfully ask members to refrain from sending to the group. See our guide for e-mail etiquette.
- “An A.A. group ought never endorse, finance or lend the A.A. name to any related facility or outside enterprise, lest problems of money, property and prestige divert us from our primary purpose.”
This Tradition is especially important in the development and maintenance of this website. Our site is intended to relate to our group and to Alcoholics Anonymous. Links resulting from this site that do otherwise, do not imply endorsement by GROW or A.A.
- “Every A.A. group ought to be fully self-supporting, declining outside contributions.”
We have no dues or fees, but we do have expenses, such as listserver, website, and bank fees. These expenses are paid entirely by the voluntary contributions of our group members. We maintain a prudent reserve equal to six months of group expenses and any excess is distributed equally among OIAA and GSO.
- “Alcoholics Anonymous should remain forever nonprofessional, but our service centers may employ special workers.”
The long form of this Tradition defines professionalism as the occupation of counseling alcoholics for fees. Any work we do in GROW is done voluntarily and freely as part of our 12th step work. Sobriety is a gift that we freely give away in order to keep.
- “A.A. as such, ought never be organized; but we may create service boards or committees directly responsible to those they serve.”
GROW relies on a Steering Committee to administer the day-to-day operations of the group and to make decisions based on group conscience. Most trusted servant roles are term limited to allow for rotation of leadership.
- “Alcoholics Anonymous has no opinion on outside issues; hence the A.A. name ought never be drawn into public controversy.”
We conduct ourselves online as we would face to face. In keeping with this Tradition, we try to avoid posting to the group about outside issues of a controversial nature, and as stated in the long form of Tradition 10, particularly those of politics, alcohol reform or sectarian religion. We involve ourselves in recovery not controversy.
- “Our public relations policy is based on attraction rather than promotion; we need always maintain personal anonymity at the level of press, radio and film.”
We believe the need for personal anonymity extends to Cyberspace. However, we cannot guarantee that what you write will not be seen by others outside our mail list. Please consider this when using full names, addresses or telephone numbers in any of your posts.
- “Anonymity is the spiritual foundation of all our traditions, ever reminding us to place principles before personalities.”
In GROW we give up our need for distinction in order to each become part of something larger than any one of us. We have no superiors, no inferiors; we are not interested in who among us may be public figures. Protection of privacy is of paramount importance. Out of respect for anonymity: a) we address mail to the list only, including “no” other address; b) we never forward group email to anyone outside the group without permission and without removing all identifying information; c) we delete all identifying information before forwarding something we wish to share with the list. See our guide for e-mail etiquette.
“Traditions in Cyberspace” is not endorsed or approved by Alcoholics Anonymous World Services, Inc. the service office for the USA and Canada, any other country’s national service office, nor OIAA. It is a translation of the Twelve Traditions as interpreted by group conscience of Grateful Recovering Online Women for guidance in this meeting medium.