The Recovery Group

Question Four

Dear Web Visitors and Loop Friends,

My name is Shana and I am a compulsive overeater. I am grateful to have found the OA program of recovery and part of my program is sharing it with others.

Over the next eight months (approx.) I will be sharing with you the 30 Questions of Overeaters Anonymous as given to me in years past. These questions helped introduce me to the first 3 steps of OA, and helped me name...and claim my feelings about myself and my disease of coe.

As I post these weekly shares, I hope that they will bring responses from YOU and that you will share your answers to these questions here on the loops.

Please note that all previous questions are already up on the web site and can be found at


A.) Read the Doctor's Opinion, in the Big Book of Alcoholics Anonymous, pages xxiii to xxx.

B.) Discuss and reflect on the phenomenon of craving as it appears in the three levels of your life - physically, emotionally, and spiritually.

First, I want to quote part of a sentence on page xxiv, where the author states, "...that the body of the alcoholic is quite as abnormal as his mind." As I read this the first time back in 1973, and as I read it today, it always hits home with me; it centers me and leaves no reservation or denial in me: I am a compulsive overeater on every level of my life.

It has been a sad truth, too, that when I succumb to the craving, the binge foods, even the foods that would fool anyone watching (because they may look normal to the naked eye), then I am caught up in a dangerous game. And, I quote again, page xxviii, "All these, and many others, have one symptom in common: they cannot start drinking without developing the phenomenon of craving." Physically, I have lived my whole life going up and down the scale. I look at photos taken of me at various stages of my life and see either the pain or the joy; pain and discomfort of a larger me smiling bravely at the camera but cringing inside, or the happy and carefree me smiling happily, basking in the good feelings of a thinner Shana.

This leads me to find meaning on page xxvii, " After they have succumbed to the desire again, as so many do, and the phenomenon of craving develops, they pass through the well-known stages of a spree, emerging remorseful, with a firm resolution not to drink again." How easy it is to fall away from the task, and forget the need for continuous and nurturing work ... work that needs to be done. How very easy to succumb to the food." How easy it is to stop the nurturing continuous work that needs to be done; how easy it is to succumb to the food. For what? I often ask myself that as I face-off with a binge; what will it bring me? Fame, fortune, happiness, health? No! Nothing but remorse, false promises, fear and anxiety. And, yes, always with that " firm resolution " that tomorrow will be a new day...tomorrow I will begin...tomorrow. It is here that I look at my life on an emotional and spiritual level. What do I want for me? I know that the compulsive overeating never gives me a chance to come up for air. It never allows my self-esteem to rise enough to listen and learn as to what my Higher Power wants for me. Moving from binge to binge, overeating large amounts of food and telling myself that it's okay, all this can leave no time in my life to work on being the best I can be. The best of me is yet to come, but I have to be in TODAY to know it, see it, and want it.

Since I have become abstinent this time, thanks to my Higher Power, I have found that my spiritual side has grown and blossomed as never before. Faith has replaced fear, and this faith is such that I am willing to trust life and flow with the waves of change. Never before could I do this, and it is only through the taking of the steps, and remaining abstinent, that I now can. Emotionally, I have never been healthier, yet why now? I think it is because I trust ME as I have never done before; the ME that is spelled "Higher Power."

Love in recovery,





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