One of the reasons I started this blog was that there seem not to be as many DA HOW sponsors recently, and definitely not enough who are available to help the increasing numbers of new members who need sponsors. That scares me. My life was saved by the DA HOW program and I need others who are doing what I am doing in this program in order to survive. For me, and I am ONLY speaking for me, I needed more structure than I was able to find in regular DA and so I found my home after eight years of floundering between regular DA and finding DA HOW.
I need the accountability of turning over my spending daily to another person before I do it. I need to be honest about what I am buying. I need to have a network of others who are willing to wait before buying something when to proceed would mean deprivation or ultimately debting … even if the waiting is painful. I need to live by a very conscientious spending plan so I am in complete clarity about where my money is going.
All of these I found in DA HOW.
However, in the end, my Higher Power (HP) is not contained in any one person. It is the group as a whole that my HP speaks through. If I give any one person that much power, I will end up surely feeling resentful. Because people are imperfect and they will inevitably disappoint this compulsive debtor. I need to be forgiving and understanding that each of us is here to save our own life, first and foremost. We are all ill in our own ways and when I criticize someone, I don’t think about how far they may have come from where they started.
So, I’m saying all that to tell you that it may not be easy to find a sponsor in DA HOW. But please, please, do not let that deter you. There are still many members who are abstinent. And definitely enough sponsors to have a network to call a different one each day for weeks to turn over your numbers and writing.
I have heard a number of people who were frustrated and angry at the lack of available sponsors. To these suffering people, I say, please understand that we each are capable of sponsoring a limited number of people. Each call takes 15 minutes. Please think about your own schedule. Most calls are in the morning, so if you have family or a job, you can see that there is a limit to how many calls you can do daily.
A number of members work more than one HOW program. So multiply those calls by that number. We each call a sponsor for our own call lasting 15 minutes.
Plus, there is an emotional commitment with each sponsee that takes energy.
If you do the math, you will see that it is not feasible for most sponsors to take on more than one or two people and still live a reasonable life.
Some sponsors, such as me, have a “permanent” temp spot for a week or two, so that we can rotate and help those who are seeking a full-time sponsor.
Once you get a sponsor, remember that things change. If your sponsor has to drop you for some reason, it is not an excuse for you to leave program. Please try not to take it personally.
The program says we may change sponsors at will. Sometimes, it is a bad match, or maybe the sponsor’s situation has changed. Please remember that we all must first put the oxygen mask on ourselves before we can help others.
To find a sponsor who has what you want may take time anyway. Not having a sponsor is not an excuse for not working the program if you decide you need it. Read the post on how to begin and just start. Call different sponsors every day to turn over your information. Sometimes, you have to work at something you really want. It is worth it. It truly is.
Calling different sponsors for outreach and to turn over your numbers may actually be the best thing for you. You will start developing a network of others like you who are committed to working DA HOW and staying abstinent no matter what. You will also be on their minds if they get an opening.
Maybe you can arrange with a sponsor that if you try to reach up to four sponsors by phone unsuccessfully that day, they will let you email your numbers and writing to them. And maybe you can arrange to text or leave a message for a sponsor if you need to make a change. I have certainly been willing to do that.
Having been without a sponsor at various times, I understand that it can be frustrating and demoralizing. But so is our disease. Which is worse? Going out there on your own and killing yourself with your debting and spending? Or trusting that if you just do the right thing one day at a time, your life will turn around as it has for others?