Sunday, May 31, 2015

May 31, 2015 - The rise and fall of Johnny Depp

Huffington Post: May 31, 2015 - The Rise And Fall Of Johnny Depp

May 31, 2015 - Tennessee TV station refuses to air right-to-marry ad by gay Republican soldier

Huffington Post: May 31, 2015 - TV Station Refuses To Air Gay Republican Soldier's Right To Marry Ad

May 31, 2015 - Great Britain considers banning those sexually stimulating 'poppers'

Gay Star News: May 31, 2015 - Poppers could be banned in the UK | Gay Star News

May 31, 2015 - Profiting from addiction: Relapse or homelessness is the only choice for many in recovery

New York Times: May 31, 2015 - A Choice for Recovering Addicts: Relapse or Homelessness - NYTimes.com

May 31, 2015 - Editorial: Treating HIV patients before they get sick

New York Times: May 31, 2015 - Editorial: Treating H.I.V. Patients Before They Get Sick - NYTimes.com

May 31, 2015 - Beau Biden, son of vice president, succumbs to brain cancer at 46

New York Times: May 31, 2015 - Beau Biden, Vice President Joe Biden’s Son, Dies at 46 - NYTimes.com

May 31, 2015 - Readings in Recovery: Today's Gift from Hazelden

Sunday, May 31, 2015
Today's thought from Hazelden is:

Detachment means "freedom from emotion"

Letting someone else's behavior determine how we feel at every turn is irresponsible. Our emotions should be determined by us, not by someone else. But no doubt we have spent years confusing the boundaries that separate us from other people. Whether at work or at home, we have too often let someone else's "insanity" affect how we behave and how we feel.

At first, it may seem insensitive not to react to others' problems or negative behavior. We may fear they'll think we simply don't care about them. Learning that it is far more caring to let other people handle their own lives takes time and patience. But with practice, it will begin to feel comfortable. In fact, in time it will feel freeing and wonderful.

I will work on detachment today, knowing that in time the rewards will come.
You are reading from the book:
A Life of My Own by Karen Casey. © 1993 by Hazelden Foundation

May 31, 2015 - Readings in Recovery: Step by Step

Step by Step
Sunday, May 31, 2015
"...(D)eep down in every man, woman and child is the fundamental idea of God. It may be obscured by calamity, by pomp, by worship of other things, but in some form or other it is there. For faith in a Power greater than ourselves, and miraculous demonstrations of that power in human lives, are facts as old as man himself." - Alcoholics Anonymous, 3rd Edition, 1976, Ch 4 ("We Agnostics"), p 55.
Today, if I expect AA to work for me, I must work with it, and I must knock down the wall that separates me from a power stronger than myself to begin my recovery. If I am struggling or even rejecting the possibility of such a power, let me read and embrace these words and accept on blind faith the hope that somewhere inside me is a "fundamental idea of God." He, God, need not be a religious entity but a spiritual one, and a "spiritual awakening," even if it is a basic change in my psyche or character, is required if I am to achieve any kind of quality sobriety. Today, I must put aside any resistance and open myself to the idea of a power stronger than myself so that I can earn the benefits of recovery. If alcohol is stronger than me, I have to believe that a force stronger than alcohol can restore me. And our common journey continues. Step by step. - Chris M., 2015

May 31, 2015 - Readings in Recovery: Twenty-Four Hours a Day

Twenty-Four Hours a Day
Sunday, May 31, 2015

AA Thought for the Day
I shall not wait to be drafted for service to AA. I shall volunteer. I shall be loyal in my attendance, generous in my giving, kind in my criticism, creative in my suggestions, loving in my attitudes. I shall give to AA my interest, my enthusiasm, my devotion and, most of all, myself.

Do I also accept this as my AA credo?

Meditation for the Day
Prayer is of many kinds but, of whatever kind, prayer is the linking up of the soul and mind to God. So, if prayer is only a glance of faith, a look or a word of love or just a feeling of confidence in the goodness and purpose in the universe, still the result of that prayer is added strength to meet all temptations and to overcome them. Even if no supplication is expressed, all the supply of strength that is necessary is secured because the soul, being linked and united to God, receives from Him all spiritual help needed. The soul, when in its human body, still needs the things belonging to its heavenly habitation.

Prayer for the Day
I pray that I may be taught how to pray. I pray that I may be linked through prayer to the mind and will of God.

Hazelden Foundation

May 31, 2015 - Readings in Recovery: A Day at a Time

The Serenity Prayer
A Day at a Time
Sunday, May 31, 2015

Reflection for the Day
Giving love is a fulfillment in itself. It must not matter whether love is returned or not. If I give love only to get a response on my terms, my love is cancelled out by my motives. If I have the capacity to give love, then any return I get for it is a special bonus. It is through giving love freely and without expectation of return, that we find ourselves and build ourselves spiritually.

Have I begun to believe, in the words of Goethe, that"Love does not dominate; it cultivates ...?"

Today I Pray
May I, the inveterate people-pleaser and approval-seeker, know that the only real love does not ask for love back. May God be patient as I try to practice this principle. May I rid myself of pride that throws itself in the way of love. May I discard my silly cat-and-mouse games that have no place in real love.

Today I Will Remember
I will not give love to get love.

Hazelden Foundation

May 31, 2015 - Readings in Recovery: The Eye Opener

The Eye Opener
Sunday, May 31, 2015

For a person to attempt to live apart from this world is as useless as for a drop of water to live apart from the ocean. God put everything in this world, and He takes nothing out. To endeavor to withdraw from the world's activities is another way of fooling yourself. We are an influence for good or evil regardless of our attempts to hide from society at large.

When a rock falls from a cliff into the sea, it is not merely that the land is one rock less, it means the contour of the whole continent has changed. However, it is still a part of God's Universe whether it can be seen by man or not.

Hazelden Foundation

May 31, 2015 - Good morning and welcome to a serene Sunday, folks!


Saturday, May 30, 2015

May 30, 2015 - Colorado school blocks valedictorian's coming out speech at graduation ceremony

Associated Press: May 30, 2015 - School blocks speech by valedictorian who planned to come out as gay – LGBTQ Nation

May 30, 2015 - Illinois legislature sends law to ban gay conversion therapy to GOP governor

Advocate.com: May 30, 2015 - Illinois Sends Conversion Therapy Ban to Governor | Advocate.com

May 30, 2015 - Obama issues proclamation for June as LGBT Pride Month

LGBTQ Nation: May 30, 2015 - Obama issues Presidential Proclamation declaring June LGBT Pride Month – LGBTQ Nation

May 30, 2015 - Academic study using gay canvassers erred in methods, not results, author says

New York Times: May 30, 2015 - Study Using Gay Canvassers Erred in Methods, Not Results, Author Says - NYTimes.com

May 30, 2015 - Readings in Recovery: Today's Gift from Hazelden

Saturday, May 30, 2015
Today's thought from Hazelden is:

We learn as much from sorrow as from joy, as much from illness as from health, from handicap as from advantage - and indeed perhaps more.
 -- Pearl S. Buck


If we or a loved one is suffering with a chronic or terminal illness or laid up from an accident, we may be out of work either because we ourselves are sick or because we need to function as caretaker. In addition to losing income, we're confronted by a stream of medical bills not covered by insurance. We may already feel completely overwhelmed by the illness or tragedy. How do we face the debt, too?

If we're emotionally overwrought because of a tragedy, we remember that the medical bills will wait. We have a responsibility to deal with them somehow, but our first responsibility is toward ourselves and to whoever is ill. We can only handle so much at a time. We allow ourselves to deal with our relationships and our grief.

Today I will live one day at a time.
You are reading from the book:
Letting Go of Debt © 2000 by Hazelden Foundation

May 30, 2015 - Readings in Recovery: Step by Step

Step by Step
Saturday, May 30, 2015 
"The old pattern reasserted itself, but it was no longer once every six months. The intervals grew shorter. The binges were longer. They were harder to get off. I wasn't the type that could taper off. I had to stop cold. My last binge followed the previous one by two weeks. I had just come off a good one, and I went back on to the next one." - Alcoholics Anonymous, 3rd Edition, 1976, "They Lost Nearly All," Ch 3 ("Desperation Drinking"), p 514. 
Today, guard against the passage of time and my last drunk from fading the memory of what my drinking days were really like - pure desperation. If it is true that the best predictor of my future is my past conduct, I cannot afford to "romanticize" my drinking, that it was "fun" and that it didn't rip a path of destruction through myself and others. God grant me the honesty and wisdom to remember the desperation that finally pushed me to seek help after I exhausted all the denial, justifications and rationalizations. Let me understand and accept that desperation is all that awaits me again if I am not honest with myself in remembering what active alcoholism is truly like. Today, the desperation that is always there to greet me again can wait. And our common journey continues. Step by step. - Chris M., 2015

May 30, 2015 - Readings in Recovery: Twenty-Four Hours a Day

Twenty-Four Hours a Day
Saturday, May 30, 2015

AA Thought for the Day
I am part of AA, one among many, but I am one. I need the AA principles for the development of the buried life within me. AA may be human in its organization, but it is Divine in its purpose. The purpose is to point men toward God and a better life. Participating in the privilege of the movement, I shall share in the responsibilities, taking it upon myself to carry my fair share of the load, not grudgingly but joyfully. To the extent that I fail in my responsibilities, AA fails. To the extent that I succeed, AA succeeds.

Do I accept this as my AA credo?

Meditation for the Day
"Praise the Lord." What does praising God mean? It means being grateful for all the wonderful things in the universe and for all the blessings in your life. So praise God by being grateful and humble. Praise of this kind has more power to vanquish evil than has mere resignation. The truly grateful and humble person who is always praising God is not tempted to do wrong. You will have a feeling of security because you know that fundamentally all is well. So look up to God and praise Him.

Prayer for the Day
I pray that I may be grateful for all my blessings. I pray that I may be humble because I know that I do not deserve them.

Hazelden Foundation

May 30, 2015 - Readings in Recovery: A Day at a Time

A Day at a Time
Saturday, May 30, 2015

Reflection for the Day
Since I've been in The Program, I've learned to redefine love. I've come to understand, for example, that sometimes it's necessary to place love ahead of indiscriminate "factual honesty." No longer, under the guise of "perfect honesty" can I cruelly and unnecessarily hurt others. Today, I always must ask myself, "What's the best and most loving thing I can do?"

Have I begun to sow the seeds of love in my daily living?

Today I Pray
May God, in His love, show me how to be loving. May I first sense the feelings of love and caring within me and then find ways to show those feelings. May I remember how many times I cut myself off from relationships because I did not know how either to let myself feel love or to show what I did feel.

Today I Will Remember
When I feel love, I will be loving.

Hazelden Foundation

May 30, 2015 - Readings in Recovery: The Eye Opener

The Eye Opener
Saturday, May 30, 2015

We are all familiar with that class of people who have a drinking problem; they know they have it and they know that they can do nothing about it themselves. They also know that we had a similar problem and that we did something about it; their own eyes bear testimony to that effect - yet they refuse to take the message we bring them. They have ears, yet they will not hear. It is not our purpose to sell them a bill of goods. Our message is only for those who want it. They aren't ready yet, so conserve your efforts for those who are hungry for what we have to give.

Hazelden Foundation

May 30, 2015 - Rise 'n shine to a Super Saturday and weekend, folks!


Friday, May 29, 2015

May 29, 2015 - Hall of Hypocrisy: 16 anti-LGBT leaders exposed as closeted gays or bi's

Advocate.com: May 29, 2015 - 16 Antigay Leaders Exposed as Gay or Bi | Advocate.com

May 29, 2015 - Arkansas justices reject new arguments in same-sex marriage case

Associated Press: May 29, 2015 - Arkansas justices reject new arguments in same-sex marriage case – LGBTQ Nation

May 29, 2015 - Science magazine formally retracts discredited study on voters' views of LGBT rights

Associated Press: May 29, 2015 - Science magazine formally retracts study on voters’ gay rights views – LGBTQ Nation

May 29, 2015 - North Carolina governor vetoes religious objection bill

Associated Press: May 29, 2015 - Governor vetoes North Carolina religious objection bill on same-sex marriage – LGBTQ Nation

May 29, 2015 - Readings in Recovery: Today's Gift from Hazelden

The Serenity Prayer
Friday, May 29, 2015
Today's thought from Hazelden is:

The cost of a thing is the amount of what I will call life, which is required to be exchanged for it, immediately or in the long run.
--Henry David Thoreau


Consider the young man who was doing great in his high school studies, then suddenly started to fall behind. One day, a teacher pulled the young man aside and asked him what happened. The student told him that he had asked his father for a car, and the father told him that if he earned the money, he could have one. The student, being industrious and hard working, went out, got a job, saved the money, and bought the car. But then the car needed insurance, gas, and maintenance, so the student kept the job to keep up the car. The job took up more and more of his time, until finally he began to fall behind in his studies.

"Why don't you just get rid of the car?" asked the teacher.

"Get rid of the car?" came the reply. "How would I get to my job?"

How often we feel that if we just get that new car, that new boyfriend or girlfriend, that promotion, or the condo in the good neighborhood, we will find happiness and contentment - only to discover that the thing just brings with it more pain, more costs, and more bother than it's worth. The new sports car runs only half the time, the new partner needs more care than your dog, the promotion eats up your weekends, and the new condo won't allow pets.

Things don't bring true happiness. Instead, they often sap your strength and leave you emptier than you were before. Think about the true cost of a thing before you pursue it in time, lifestyle changes, energy, maintenance and money. Can you really afford the amount of life that the thing will take from you in return for the happiness it brings? Are you willing to pay the price?

God, help me be aware of the true cost of the things in my life.
You are reading from the book:
More Language of Letting Go © 2000 by Melody Beattie

May 29, 2015 - Readings in Recovery: Step by Step

The Serenity Prayer
Step by Step
Friday, May 29, 2015 
"Came to believe that a Power greater than ourselves could restore us to sanity." - Step Two 
Today, whether a newcomer or veteran of the Program, if the term Higher Power discourages me because my faith has been ravaged by alcohol or a less than serene sobriety, let me re-read and understand the literal interpretation of Step Two. We are not asked to believe but come to believe in the possibility of a Higher Power. If I shrug off that possibility, I need only look to why I came to AA in the first place. And in doing that, I also reached for the possibility that some help I needed desperately exists. But if I cannot yet grasp the concept of a higher power, let me believe that Step Two is telling me that coming to believe in and accepting a higher power is a dynamic process, one that requires ongoing change. Just as I did not become sober after my last drink and needed weeks, months or longer to go from being dry to being sober, so it goes with developing an understanding of the principles of the Twelve Steps. Today, I will not give up if I do not  believe in that higher power and instead will proceed with the promise of Step Two that I will one day find my higher power. And our common journey continues. Step by step. - Chris M., 2015

May 29, 2015 - Readings in Recovery: Twenty-Four Hours a Day

The Serenity Prayer
Twenty-Four Hours a Day
Friday, May 29, 2015

AA Thought for the Day
We who have learned to put our drink problem in God's hands can help others to do so. We can be used as a connection between an alcoholic's need and God's supply of strength. We in Alcoholics Anonymous can be uniquely useful just because we have the misfortune or fortune to be alcoholics ourselves. Do I want to be a uniquely useful person?

Will I use my own greatest defeat and failure and sickness as a weapon to help others?

Meditation for the Day
I will try to help others. I will try not to let a day pass without reaching out an arm of love to someone. Each day I will try to do something to lift another human being out of the sea of discouragements into which he or she has fallen. My helping hand is needed to raise the helpless to courage, to strength, to faith, to health. In my own gratitude, I will turn and help other alcoholics with the burden that is pressing too heavily upon them.

Prayer for the Day
I pray that I may be used by God to lighten many burdens. I pray that many souls may be helped through my efforts.

Hazelden Foundation

May 29, 2015 - Readings in Recovery: A Day at a Time

The Serenity Prayer
A Day at a Time
Friday, May 29, 2015

Reflection for the Day
When we first reached The Program and for the first time in our lives stood among people who seemed to understand, the sense of belonging was exhilarating. We felt that the problem of isolation had been solved. We soon discovered, however, that while we weren't alone any more, in a social sense, we still suffered many of the old pangs of anxious apartness. Until we had talked with complete candor of our conflicts and had listened to someone else do the same thing, we still didn't belong. Step Five was the answer.

Have I found through the Fifth Step the beginning of true kinship with my fellows and God?

Today I Pray
May God help me learn to share myself, my attributes and my failings, not just as I take the Fifth Step but in a continuing give-and-take process with my friends. May I cultivate an attitude of openness and honesty with others, now that I have begun to be honest with myself. May I remember who I used to be - the child in a game of hide-and-seek, who hid so well that nobody could find her/him and everyone gave up trying and went home.

Today I Will Remember
I will be open to friendship.

Hazelden Foundation

May 29, 2015 - Readings in Recovery: The Eye Opener

The Serenity Prayer
The Eye Opener
Friday, May 29, 2015

Life has been hard on us, but most of it was made hard by ourselves. The hard life, however, taught us much: it strengthened our muscles; it broadened our experiences. We are better men because of it. We have known much of hunger, pain, defeat, mental anguish, despair and shame. Only the good survived this ordeal, and we can alleviate the sufferings of the world all the better because we have suffered also.

God was not punishing us ...He was conditioning us.

Hazelden Foundation

May 29, 2015 - Wake up to a toe-tappin' Happy Dance Friday, folks!


Thursday, May 28, 2015

May 28, 2015 - Neither bisexual nor lesbian, Oscar winner Tatum O'Neal is dating women

Huffington Post: May 28, 2015 - Tatum O'Neal Reveals She's 'Dating Mostly Women' These Days

May 28, 2015 - Gay porn models may soon have to wear protective goggles on set

Gay Star News: May 28, 2015 - Gay porn actors may soon have to wear 'protective goggles' on set | Gay Star News

May 28, 2015 - New report underlines savage inequalities faced by LGBT Americans

Advocate.com: May 28, 2015 - New Report Underlines Savage Inequalities Faced by LGBT Americans | Advocate.com

May 28, 2015 - Why Indiana was the perfect storm for an HIV outbreak

HIV Plus: May 28, 2015 - Why Indiana Was Perfect Storm for HIV Outbreak | HIVPlusMag.com

May 28, 2015 - Another closet: The need for intervention in domestically violence LGBT relationships

The Good Men Project: May 28, 2015 - Want to Better Support LGBTQIA+ and Male Survivors of Partner Violence? Here’s Why We Need More Gender Analysis -

May 28, 2015 - Why men might not go to therapy when we need it

The Good Men Project: May 28, 2015 - Why Men Might Not Go to Therapy -

May 28, 2015 - Clemson football coach Dabo Swinney pulls out of event sponsored by anti-gay organization

Outsports: May 28, 2015 - Clemson football coach Dabo Swinney pulls out of event sponsored by anti-gay group - Outsports

May 28, 2015 - High school athlete on coming out as gay: 'Best decision I've ever made'

Outsports: May 28, 2015 - High school athlete comes out on Twitter: 'The best decision I've ever made' - Outsports

May 28, 2015 - Priest removed from Seton Hall breaks silence, comes out publicly as gay

Outsports: May 28, 2015 - Priest removed from Seton Hall breaks his silence, comes out publicly as gay - Outsports

May 28, 2015 - Eroding a stigma: Is TV finally ready for real HIV-positive characters?

HIV Plus: May 28, 2015 - Is Television Finally Ready for Real HIV-Positive Characters? | HIVPlusMag.com

May 28, 2015 - HIV treatment should start at diagnosis, U.S. health officials contend

New York Times: May 28, 2015 - H.I.V. Treatment Should Start at Diagnosis, U.S. Health Officials Say - NYTimes.com

May 28, 2015 - Readings in Recovery: Today's Gift from Hazelden

The Serenity Prayer
Thursday, May 28, 2015
Today's thought from Hazelden is:

I can hear music...sweet, sweet music.
 -- Brian Wilson


We often find it helpful to think about the role music has played in our lives. Sometimes, it has been a problem for us - time spent listening to loud, blaring music was a time of physical and emotional isolation, usually under the influence of drugs.

In recovery we may find ourselves drawn to a different kind of music that speaks to our changing way of life. Perhaps it is more soothing or relaxing. Perhaps it is a new artist.

Whatever type of music we choose, we find it is much more than a pastime for us. It is an appreciation. Our favorite artists, our favorite songs - some never change, some do.

Our relationship with music is growing and changing. In recovery we find music engages our minds and relaxes our bodies in a new way. Music lifts our spirits, too. We are grateful that music is part of our life and that we now have a chance to think about it and perhaps even develop some new interests. Music is an excellent way to get to know other people; it helps us unwind after a hard day and adds a new dimension to our enjoyment of life.

Today I thank You for music. Help me to love and appreciate it even more now that I am sober.
You are reading from the book:
Body, Mind, and Spirit © 1990 by Hazelden Foundation

May 28, 2015 - Readings in Recovery: Step by Step

The Serenity Prayer
Step by Step
Thursday, May 28, 2015
Today, my character defects in my Fourth Step and the amends in my Eighth Step are not confined to wrongs of commission but also to my wrongs of omission. With that reality, my Fourth and Eighth Steps, hopefully, will be more honest. My moral inventory and amends I have tried before have focused on things I have done or said, but they have not included my wrongs done by not saying or doing what I should have. Maybe I neglected or refused to return love or support that someone showed me in my darkest days, or maybe I didn't answer someone's call for help for whatever reason. Today, I return to my Fourth and Eighth steps to decide if I owe restitution not for what I did, but for what I didn't do. And our common journey continues. Step by step. - Chris M., 2015

May 28, 2015 - Readings in Recovery: Twenty-Four Hours a Day

The Serenity Prayer
Twenty-Four Hours a Day
Thursday, May 28, 2015

AA Thought for the Day
In AA, we learn that since we are alcoholics we can be uniquely useful people. That is, we can help other alcoholics when perhaps somebody who has not had our experience with drinking could not help them. That makes us uniquely useful. The AA's are a unique group of people because they have taken their own greatest defeat and failure and sickness and used it as a means of helping others. We who have been through the same thing are the ones who can best help other alcoholics.

Do I believe that I can be uniquely useful?

Meditation for the Day
I should try to practice the presence of God. I can feel that He is with me and near me, protecting and strengthening me always. In spite of every difficulty, every trial, every failure, the presence of God suffices. Just to believe that He is near me brings strength and peace. I should try to live as though God were beside me. I cannot see Him because I was not made with the ability to see Him else there were no room for faith. But I can feel His spirit with me.

Prayer for the Day
I pray that I may try to practice the presence of God. I pray that by doing so I may never feel alone or helpless again.

Hazelden Foundation