MU Meeting:  Feb. 19th, 2023 – Daryl and Sue Hales:  “Recovery from alcoholism”

At this month’s meeting we invited Daryl Hales and his wife, Sue, to come and speak about their individual experiences in the recovery from alcoholism.

As Daryl said, you would expect an alcoholic to be a homeless old man in tatty old clothes with matted hair roaming the streets. He was a very smart man, neat and tidy and looking quite ‘normal’. Alcoholism isn’t limited to the poor and unemployed, but includes many well educated people with high-powered jobs. Apparently Daryl had tried many times to combat alcoholism, which of course, he had maintained was never his fault.

Alcoholism can ruin lives, families and marriages, and even going to Alcoholics Anonymous (AA) doesn’t always work first time or if people aren’t in the right frame of mind. There are 4,000,000 or so recovering alcoholics, and when joining AA they are given a book of instructions to follow (much like the size of a Bible). The aim is to encourage people to find a really, happy contented life, with the idea of finding a god to aid them. Daryl believes he has been a God-given purpose in life to help others in their recovery.  However many alcoholics end up in institutions, psychiatric hospitals and rehab. It seems to come from a mental obsession, and a physical allergy to alcohol.

Daryl’s wife, Sue, then gave us her version of being an alcoholic. Her’s was a more normal journey, starting at 17 / 18 when she discovered alcohol as many other teenagers would. Then onto university, where of course it was a normal course of life, and where there were no tabs on her. It was only when she got caught for drunk driving, when she felt she had let everyone down, and the idea of being a failure and not worth anything to anyone set in, that Sue also ended up at AA, where she was given the book of instructions to work through. She read out to us the 12 steps of AA, which end up with the purpose of going out and talking to people about it and sharing their experiences. This is where we came in. However, Daryl did say he reads his book every day, just like the Bible, to give him daily guidance, and he hasn’t looked back since.

This was a really interesting and informative talk and Daryl and Sue hoped it had given us an insight into the issues of alcohol and alcoholism.

Our next meeting will be on Wednesday 15th March and it will be our AGM. We will be providing tea and cakes, so please do come along and join us at 2pm in the Church Hall. If you need any more information ring Dorothy on HC 533704 or Carole on HC 533882.