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Dr Sleep and AA

Discussion in 'Doctor Sleep' started by Christiane17, Jan 7, 2014.

  1. Christiane17

    Christiane17 Well-Known Member

    Hi everyone! Hope you guys had fantastic hollidays. Happy New Year to each one of you.

    I am currently reading french translation of Dr. Sleep and I find this novel so completly awesome. That being said, I'm not an AA member, but my husband is ( and not ashamed of it ). He's been sober for nearly 30 years now. So I am glad to see the many references about AA and how it's painted in the book. Everything is so accurate ( the big book, the meetings, the mentors, the way alcoolics are describded and their sufferings. Dan Torrance is gifted with his ''shining'', but he's also human and tormented. He's a fantastic exemple on how people with great intelligence and big potentiel could also have to struggle every day of their life to stay away from alcool or other subtences. SK wrote a great novel and he probably helped at the same time people who are addicted to those. My husband is not a reader, but I read parts where AA is mentionned to him, and he agreed that the program is very well describded. Dr. Sleep is truely a book of reference as well as a fascinating work of art. Love it!!! :clap:
    Sirocco, Sarah25, DemPugs and 18 others like this.
  2. Tiny

    Tiny RECEIVED:Annoying Questions award

    Thanks for shareN Chris!

    I am a member of AA, 12 years sober.
    In Dr. Sleep:
    The depiction of AA (and the drunks it serves) is utterly realistic.
    when I read it , I ran and told an old sponsor of mine all about it.
    then I shared about it in a meeting. I was very excited that the
    main dudes in the story are all AA guys!!

    some members where 'wary' of a celeb' talking about his or her
    recovery. It is one of our highest traditions that we keep
    %100 anonymity at the level of press radio and film.

    some members think that the %100 IS A LITTLE EXTREME.

    We believe its OK for a celeb to talk about recovery, as long as that celeb
    does not set themselves up to be the "poster child" for AA or NA or any other A.
    not in any way, not ever. its NEVER a good idea.

    King and many other celebs (Stephen Tyler, Greg Fergison, Drew Barrymore etc etc)
    do a fine job at this, keeping well with in the confines of common sense.

    It was a great day for me when I saw a true-to-life depiction of AA's
    in the media. Most AA related stuff is something like...
    ...SNL Spoofs and such.

    TommyKnockers is another King book filled with AA references.
    Sarah25, DemPugs, Wasp27 and 11 others like this.
  3. skimom2

    skimom2 Just moseyin' through...

    I think that for a lot of people, the AA references are going to be a point of contention with this novel (probably already are--I only read one review, and was irritated that the person writing the review had clearly not read the novel. I review for publication, and the 'tells' were all there, sadly enough). Dan's journey to sobriety is a strong subtext to the story, meant, I think, to recall Jack's failure and the consequences of that action--it brings the stories together. It draws a parallel between the two protagonists, but then sharply divides them.

    For many people, though, AA and the religious underpinning of that organization is troublesome, or it's become a joke to them. Mr. King obviously believes in its value, but not everyone thinks the same way. The references were so pervasive, I think, that in the hands of a lesser writer they might have become tiresome and strident. I suspect there are those that became frustrated or irritated and dropped the book because of them. Their loss.
    CCAL, davo67, Chuggs and 6 others like this.
  4. FlakeNoir

    FlakeNoir Original Kiwi© SKMB® Moderator

    I'm not a member and haven't had much to do with AA. I wasn't put off by the references and didn't feel them to be tiresome or intrusive. I think because I knew of Jack's history I actually welcomed Danny's involvement with AA... because I just wanted to see him well again and I guess not having any preconceived (negative) notions with the organisation, I hoped that he'd be able to find help there.
    davo67, ~Ally~, niro and 8 others like this.
  5. skimom2

    skimom2 Just moseyin' through...

    Agreed. Unfortunately, the organization has become a staple of stand up comedy/SNL-type shows here, or people become passionate defenders. America has such a ridiculous obsession with religion--we're firmly a product of pragmatism, but there's still that Puritan streak that makes us (and I'm using "us" in the corporate sense) feel guilty about that. So in a country where there isn't really strong religious sentiment, you get people who think that they 'have to' take a stand, either over the top religiosity or strident anti-religion. IMHO, it's all private--who cares what anyone else thinks/believes? But that's a subject for another board, methinks (lol).
  6. Tiny

    Tiny RECEIVED:Annoying Questions award

    AA religious underpinnings

    They/it (the God stuff) can be ignored by new members.
    There is very little "god talk" at any given meeting . A new person
    can find a sponsor that either is heavily INTO the God stuff or
    find a sponsor that is Agnostic.

    the GOD stuff should never keep anyone away from AA.
    A person can take it or leave it ...as they wish
    Last edited: Jan 7, 2014
    ~Ally~, niro, Christiane17 and 5 others like this.
  7. Christine62

    Christine62 Well-Known Member

    My step mother has been in AA for 35 years. It saved her and my father's life. I think Mr. King's depiction of Dan Torrence's "bottom" and his slow, slow heal through AA might just might get some folks to a meeting. Alcohol and drugs are just a response to the **** all us humans have to shovel through. AA gives meaning and grounding to those who need a way to look at the world. I told my mom that she and her AA pals should read the Shining because Jack Torrence is so text book drunk it's not even funny--and Danny is textbook recovery.
    baggy, CCAL, ~Ally~ and 7 others like this.
  8. FlakeNoir

    FlakeNoir Original Kiwi© SKMB® Moderator

    You hit the nail there for me... whenever I get somebody come to my front door wishing to discuss religion, this is exactly what I say... 'it's personal and private and not something that I will discuss with a complete stranger on my doorstep.... have a nice day.' :biggrin2:
    Sarah25, niro, Lisey Landon and 10 others like this.
  9. AnnaMarie

    AnnaMarie Well-Known Member

    SK has been honest about his own struggles with alcohol. Whether AA was where he got help or not, I'm sure it's something he tried. And if it did help him, he would feel positively about it. If it did not help him, he still might feel positive about it.

    Personally, I thought the part where Dan hit bottom seemed rushed. I continued waiting for him to hit rock bottom. It just seemed rushed and I didn't feel it with Dan.
  10. VultureLvr45

    VultureLvr45 Well-Known Member

    I admire SK's honesty about his struggles. AM, I (respectfully) disagree about his hitting bottom. 'Canny' and 'Mama' were so horrific to him, the bruises, on baby and his Mama, and Dan
    stealing from the mama, or perhaps considering to permit the baby to go into the drug thinking it may be a quicker (and more humane way to die) than to starved and beaten to death over the next 18 months by a caretaker[/Spoiler] was mortified to visit this aspect of himself. It is why he held on to that and didn`t tell his sponsor.
    I appreciated the glimpse of AA. King, again bringing it home to regular people.
    Last edited by a moderator: Jan 8, 2014
  11. AnnaMarie

    AnnaMarie Well-Known Member


    When it happened, I didn't feel it. As he looked back, and I think more information was added I realized it was his rock bottom. But,
    when Dan left, he felt bad about stealing from the little boy. But, that's not rock bottom....he felt worse when he found out the little boy was killed by his uncle. He was separated by time and space when that happened.

    To me personally, I didn't feel it the way I usually feel things in King books.

    The fact that I've never hit rock bottom and quit alcohol/drugs doesn't matter. King writes so well I usually do feel what he wants.
    Christiane17, VultureLvr45 and Neesy like this.
  12. Tiny

    Tiny RECEIVED:Annoying Questions award

    Mr Stephen King KNOWS a great deal about AA and its 'goings on".
    He knows the Lingo and the walk.
    He knows what meetings are like .
    he has a deep understanding about "how it works"

    either he is/was a long time members or he has REALLY
    SPOKEN 'at length' to someone who is a member. This person would
    have had to "personalty" help King write this book. ...An AA ghost writer
    of sorts...

    It is much more likely that King himself is a serious member of AA.
    TRUST me...King is an AA guy...not an Earth person.

    (Earth person is our term for anyone that is not a drunk)
  13. Tiny

    Tiny RECEIVED:Annoying Questions award

    ...regular people...
    I LOL !
  14. not_nadine

    not_nadine Comfortably Roont

    .....regular people.... lol...I am reading this as I am heading off to a meeting!

    Not that there's anything wrong with that! :tounge:
    Last edited by a moderator: Jan 8, 2014
  15. not_nadine

    not_nadine Comfortably Roont

    That whole post was not supposed to be a spoiler - still figuring out how to work the tags.

    Gotta go!
  16. Tiny

    Tiny RECEIVED:Annoying Questions award

    it worked just fine from where im sitting.

    well done, hope you had a good meeting!
  17. The Nameless

    The Nameless M-O-O-N - That spells Nameless

    I have to admit to a couple of ignorances of mine - I never realized how old aa was, I thought it was a mid - late 90s thing, 15 - 20 years, and I just always assumed that Stephen was a member, knowing he has beaten drug and alcohol addiction, and he wrote a bit about it in 11/22/63.

    Good luck to all of you who use aa.
  18. Christiane17

    Christiane17 Well-Known Member

    I'm happy people share their thoughts here. AA is a great fraternity and my hubbie always says that he's greatful for being a part of it, and also that he never declines whenever another member is asking for help. Again, in Dr. Sleep, this way of thinking is well pictured. In french it's refered as ''Le mode de vie''. I really have no idea how this translate in english sorry. Thank you all for sharing.:okay::grin:
  19. not_nadine

    not_nadine Comfortably Roont

    "Le mode de vie" according to google translate is "The Lifestyle". I don't know if that means "The Fellowship" as it is referred to here.

    Yeah, it was started in 1935 and NA was formed in 1953.
  20. Neesy

    Neesy #1 fan (Annie Wilkes cousin) 1st cousin Mom's side

    I would translate "le mode de vie" as "way of life" but maybe I am just taking the words literally. I know that once in AA and a successful member, it does become your way of life.
    VultureLvr45 and Christiane17 like this.

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