When Rick R’s grandson was five he was learning about space, animals and what “bad” behavior was. In a moment of irritation, grandpa resorted to blaming. His grandson reminded him of a better way to look at things. Since Steps 8 and 9 are about improving personal relationships, we learn to stop personal attacks (from Twelve Steps and Twelve Traditions, p. 77 and Concept XII, AA General Service’s Warranty Five).

Kathleen C describes her living amends with a family member—without worrying about doing it perfectly. An anonymous member gives us more tips for smoothing out the process by promoting unity. John W, good drinker and great forgetter, found a friend’s share reminded him what the past was like and why he didn’t want to go back there.

Standing alone on Hope Street in Tiburon

Christine R tells us how standing alone on Hope Street in Tiburon underscores her commitment to answering the AA helpline phones. Another living example of The Promises, Bryan L traces his life experience and how it was valuable training for his job as a counselor in rehab. These stories show how members avoid going on the defensive, clear past wreckage and find hope for living better lives.

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