~ LETTERS TO THE EDITOR ~
- READER QUESTIONS OA POLICIES
Kia ora (Greetings):
I am writing in response to Todd's questions of
recognition of the on-line loops as an OA tool. I have received a lot
of support from these loops on a daily basis in between meetings.
I live in a town that has one f2f meeting a week, however with the
loop it is like having an extra two meetings a day, every day. I would
love to talk about my esh at my f2f meeting where I have used this
tool, but have been warned/encouraged not to do this, because
it is not recognised by WSO. I would like WSO, or those who have
influence, to consider a motion for conscience decisions for this to
I remain an abstinent OA member in recovery,
Hiria R, New Zealand
- THE RECOVERY GROUP PHOTO ALBUM - I
I am writing to you because I was very offended by a letter in the
March issue of Serendipity. The letter was from "turned off in
Missouri", and the writer insinuated that the photo album is a
break of anonymity and ended with a quote of "who wants to
see a bunch of fat people anyway." I have been in OA for
almost three years now (came in at my highest weight ever),
and have never felt anything but love and acceptance. I have
been a member of the Recovery Group for quite a while, too,
and have felt the same there: unconditional love and acceptance.
OA has given me my life back and I am very grateful for that.
But you know, whoever wrote that letter sounds exactly like
the people "out there" (in the real world.) When I am in the
OA rooms (whether f2f or online) I am in a whole other
world... we all are; a world of acceptance and love and
understanding. I cannot get that anywhere but OA.
When I found that letter in your newsletter I started to wonder
why you chose to put it in there. It hurt me, offended me and
made me feel very sad; sad that there is actually someone in
this wonderful fellowship who feels that way, sad that that
person chose to write that letter without first dealing with their
own personal issue, and sad that they are at a place where
they have to think and say mean things to hurt other people,
without even thinking about the effects it has on others.
I, for one, love the idea of the photo album. And by the pictures
on it, I can see I am not alone. As I understand the traditions,
you can not break your own anonymity. I am not trying to be rude
or anything, but that letter is something I would expect anywhere
in the world but OA. The last thing I want is OA to turn out like
all the other places I am running away from, places we all are
running away from. If we can not love and accept each other
(and ourselves) EXACTLY as we are in OA, where can we?
Aren't we supposed to love ourselves and want to look at
ourselves no matter how much we weigh? And the same goes
for each other. To make a statement like "who wants to look
at a bunch of fat people anyway" is not only rude, judgemental
and not accepting, but it is exactly the type of comment and
outlook in society that got me (as well as many others, I'm sure)
to OA in the first place.
PLEASE, let's leave those kinds of judgments and comments to the
outside world... that's where they belong. The only thing that
belongs in OA is unity, acceptance and love.
- THE RECOVERY GROUP PHOTO ALBUM - II
A comment to the writer about the pictures. As with many
things, I am going to take what I want and leave the rest.
According to the Twelve Traditions, in the public media,
faces and last names should not be used if people state
they are members of OA. There may be room for debate as
to whether this website is the public media. There may be
room for debate as to whether by being a part of the Recovery
Group, I am stating I belong to OA. I don't know that I have
an answer. For myself, if requested, I would not have my
picture included. But for people that do choose to post their
pictures, thank you, HP, that most people viewing those pictures
on this site are nonjudgmental, and see the people as fellow travelers
on the road to recovery.
Keep up the good work; I am enjoying the newsletter.
(Editor's note: The Recovery Photo Album accessed via the
main page of the Recovery Website is private and can only be
accessed by members of TRG with a password.
- NEW LOOP INTEREST
Somewhere I read that we could join a group where
we could work on our childhood issues and bad family
experiences while growing up. Can you tell me where this
A Reader ~ Israel
(Editors' note: There is currently no such group. However,
the administrators might consider such a loop if there is sufficient
- SUBMITTING LETTERS
Letters to the Editor are encouraged and welcomed.
Please send your letter to
Please put 'Letter to the Editor' in the subject line.
~ April LOOP SPOTLIGHTS ~
The Drug Abuse ODAT discussion group is more than just a
private and safe list in cyberspace. It is a place where those of
us with food compulsions who are also cross addicted to drugs
can meet with others who suffer and share our experience,
strength and hope with one another. It is a place where we can
feel at home, it can become our cyberspace family and where
we know that we will be heard and not judged. A place where
we can be anonymous ... and safe ... and accepted ... and loved.
A place where we all speak the same language ~ the language
of recovery. And a place, as the poet said, "where, when we
have to go there, they have to take us in."
Drug Abuse ODAT is not affiliated with Overeaters Anonymous, Inc. or
Narcotics Anonymous, Inc. Nevertheless, many of our members belong
to OA and NA and we have the Twelve Traditions as our guidelines.
An important part of our recovery program are the Twelve Steps and we
encourage the use of OA and NA literature. Drug Abuse and Recovery
has online meetings where there is no crosstalk and where we share
our experience, strength and hope with one another. The only
requirement for membership in DA and Recovery is the sincere desire
to stop using and eating compulsively.
Because this list is composed primarily of members of anonymous
groups, it is not a public medium of communication and thus members
may use their last names if they desire. Pseudonyms are also
acceptable. Readers of this list are urged to respect the anonymity
of the users of this list. What you read here, what you see here,
let it stay here. Please do not pass on the messages that are posted
to this list without first getting the permission of the person who originally
posted the message. You have the option of sending messages to the
entire list or to individuals privately. It is always a joy for the group to
see the posting of a new member and you will probably receive lots
of letters back welcoming you when you decide you would like to
To find out more, please visit
To join, please send a blank email to:
Emotions ODAT is a quiet group, and sharing is low. Emotions are a
touchy subject and hard to talk about. My name is Mickie,
and I have been the coordinator of the Emotions group for about two years.
I am always available for those in need of
a friendly ear. Personally, I have found that emotions play a large
part of my recovery from compulsive overeating; finding my trigger
emotionsmade it easier to follow the 12 steps to recovery. Our
group is open to any one wishing to recover. To join, please
send a blank email to:
For more information please check out the following web site:
To join, send an email to:
Grey Sheet ODAT
Before Overeaters Anonymous approved Dignity of Choice in regard to
plans of eating a number of years ago, there was what became widely
known as the Grey Sheet. There was nothing secret about the Grey
Sheet ~ many used it as their plan of eating ... and many lost weight.
There is still wide interest in the Grey Sheet.
Many of our members wanted more information about the Grey Sheet,
especially newcomers who had heard about it but wanted to know
more. To accommodate this need, Grey Sheet ODAT was created.
The mission of this loop is to provide a forum for members to ask
questions and learn more about the Grey Sheet. This loop with its
200 members will serve as a springboard to a new loop which you
will be hearing more about In the weeks to come. The new loop
will be for those who have made the decision to commit to a new
way of life by working the Twelve Steps, using the Grey Sheet as
their plan of eating and working on their spiritual, emotional and
physical recovery one day at a time. The Grey Sheet nor any
serious Twelve Step recovery program should not be worked alone.
A sponsor is vital.
The Recovery Group does not have an opinion of the Grey Sheet or any
organization with that name. We do have an opinion, however, on
making available to our members a safe forum for information, to meet
others to discuss the serious matter of our disease and to work a
recovery program even if that program includes a special focus.
The use of a food plan is not a requirement for membership in OA
or in The Recovery Group. Tradition three states: "The only
requirement for membership is a desire to stop eating compulsively."
And please notice that the word "desire" is a key word in that
In May of 1997, Overeaters Anonymous issued a policy statement on
food plans which read:
"The OA 1997 World Service Business Conference, after careful
consideration, believes that, although many individual OA members
choose to follow a plan of eating for their personal plan of recovery,
offering food plans at OA meetings is a violation of Tradition Ten.
While each OA member is free to choose a personal plan of eating
to achieve abstinence, OA as a whole cannot print, endorse or
distribute food plan information to members. Nutrition is a most
controversial outside issue; the hiring of professionals to produce
food plans for use at meetings also violates the Eighth Tradition,
as we need always remain non-professional. Groups endorsing
any food plans by distributing them at their meetings affect OA as
a whole. We ask all groups, intergroups and regions of OA to
adhere to the above policy statement and discontinue the use
of food plan information at meetings. We ought best concern
ourselves with our suggested program of recovery - the Twelve Steps."
Before this time there was the Grey Sheet and Dignity of Choice.
If you would like to read about the evolvement of food plans for OA,
there is quite a good one at the following URL:
You don't have to experience the loss of a life to know grief. Just
watching a loved one die can cause us to grieve while they are
still with us. Other types of grief include the grief of a parent
watching their child pack and leave home to go to college or
move in with a partner; a teenager dealing with the divorce of
his or her parents, left wondering if some how he/she is to blame
for this separation; the pain from the loss of a beloved pet; or
even the turmoil of losing one's job.
Whatever your loss, we offer a haven, a safe environment, for
you to relive those moments you once shared, and in sharing,
know that through your memories, the strength and love you
once felt is still there in you heart and can be healed. Please
know that grief is not forever, but love is. And here at Grief and
Recovery we will love you until you feel warm and secure again."
Whatever your loss, we offer a haven, a safe environment, for you
to relive those moments you once shared, and in sharing, know
that through your memories, the strength and love you once felt
is still there in you heart and can be healed. Please know that
grief is not forever, but love is. And here at Grief and Recovery
we will love you until you feel warm and secure again".
To read more, please visit our webpage:
To join, please send a blank email to