- August 18, 2023


It has been often observed that defiance is the chief characteristic of an alcoholic.  They put up roadblocks of indifference, fancied self-sufficiency, prejudice and obstinacy.   It literally takes an act of God for some of these types of people to see things differently.  There will also be those who have drifted into indifference, filled with self-sufficiency who have become negatively prejudiced against the program.  There are also those who are downright defiant because their demands have not been fulfilled.  Strangely enough loved ones and friends may find this person even more unapproachable than the doctor or therapist.

Some people are just plain stubborn.  All alcoholics have this defect of character to one degree or another.  It may take many conversations with the stubborn one for them to let go of their death grip on life.  Usually there is fear involved.  These persons would rather live in fear than entertain some new ideas.  Fear is somewhat comfortable for them as they are familiar with it.  Change is terrifying to them.  Some would rather remain drunken sots than make positive changes in their way of living their lives.  

It is through the process of the 12 Steps that we are able to let go of our defiance and stubbornness.  By becoming compliant with the principles of the program and using the tools learned in the step process, we are able to incorporate new ways of thinking into our lives.  We become able to use our perception when it comes to having differences with others.  We realize that many persons may be looking at the same thing, but they all have a different perception of what is being looked at.  For example, think of a fish aquarium.  We may all be looking at the aquarium but our perception of it is different from the next person.  I may see a green fish and you may see a blue fish.  The defiant one may argue that all the fish are green because that is what he saw.  That may be true in his perception, but it is not the whole truth regarding the aquarium.  

This is unfortunate for all who are looking at the aquarium as the defiant one may start an argument or a shouting match when it isn’t necessary.  But persons who have come to a level of accepting the perceptions of others will find this type of behavior to be unnecessary.  In addition to being unhappy it is almost impossible to stay sober when this type of negative thinking is instilled in one.  So, you see the importance of losing one’s defiance through the process of the 12 Steps.  By doing so once may gain sobriety and even be happy about it.  Relationships with others may be more enjoyable.  And the former defiant one may come to live in a serene state of life.

Written by Phillip