I happily thought I was done writing about the traditions and then I picked up the book The History of Gay People in Alcoholics Anonymous by Audrey Borden. She says that my friend from tradition three, the man who suffered from a worse addiction than alcohol, was actually a “sexual deviant,” aka gay.
Well, that’s a horse of a different color. I had always assumed it referred to heroin. Looking at it more closely, I can see that the text leaves it vague so that we may substitute whatever addiction presents itself to us in the form of a suffering alcoholic. But gay?
I hope we understand now that while gay people are a minority, they are not “deviant.” In my limited personal experience, I have not seen gay people discriminated against in AA. I have not seen their sexuality (our sexuality) impact their participation in AA or their sobriety. I guess back then this was a much bigger deal.
So I will send my gratitude toward heaven once again and be even more grateful that the founders allowed the gay man to belong and to participate.
If ever I have felt that I didn’t belong or wasn’t welcomed, it was when I was very young, and some few individuals couldn’t wrap their minds around the fact of my alcoholism. And that would have gone against the book as well.