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Post Info TOPIC: Respect in Meetings.


Member

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Respect in Meetings.


I would like members views on what they feel is a respect based meeting, and conversely, what they feel is disrespectful behaviour in meetings. I personally find people who laugh and chat as a member is sharing to be disrespectful and disruptive but I accept others may view it differently. Should a Chair or Group members intervene when such behaviour is taking place?

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Senior Member

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yes the rule should be no cross talk or disruptive behavior showing resect for the person shareing is in my mind tatmount to recovery the same people who gab are often the first to bitch if someone talks when they share this is only my opinion but i have been in and out of the rooms for over 25 years so i think i have learnd a thing or 2

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Guru

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 smile      It is very distracting at meetings.In some formats is says to respect the one who is sharing,no crosstalk,interuption.My peeve is texting at meetings , are they there for recovery or to fool on there dam phone.Some people are just jackasses were ever they go.They don't care about the people around them who are at the meeting to change there way of life ,free from addiction.smile

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Member

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hi rocky. thanks for your clear views and I have a lot of respect for the years you have clocked up. Each day a miracle eh? Re subject ; I have always stated 'this is a room of recovery and ask people respect this and refrain from conversations whilst people share' as I chair but find myself under a bit of pressure from certain members who have more clean time (I am a year on the 18th) who seem to think it is ok to chat and giggle during the meeting as members share. I find it rude on a gut feeling but my main concern is that it could lead to a death. I know of at least one addict who, whilst detoxing in the rooms, took this behaviour to be directed at him and hasn't been back. Am I best to stick to my guns and make clear this behaviour is inappropriate and disruptive? Go so far as to state it as such? If needed to ask members to take their conversations outside? I know it seems drastic but I feel as though my obligation is to the whole. What do you suggest I do? We are a young group in terms of cleantime and I/we would welcome your input.

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Member

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I agree cdbuckberry. It isn't a gang hut we are in, it is a room of recovery. I got cleans in the rooms and feel it is really important to behave in a respectful manner. It does piss me off when people cross-talk and texting would drive me over the edge I think. Spirituality would probably fly out the window if that were to happen smile.gif

-- Edited by CharlieMcEdin on Sunday 10th of January 2010 06:47:18 AM

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Guru

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I like meetings where there is laughter and a sense of joy.
It shows how recovering addicts can be restored to happiness.
I do not like when it happens during sharing, but of course it does.
My experience is that most times it is brief and not what I would call 'disruptive"
but there have been a few times when it got a little to loud or too long.
I have seen chair people say something like "please refrain from cross talk while people share" in a non hostile way and it usually works.

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Veteran Member

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I find it disrespectful when people are talking while someone is sharing. If you want to talk to someone instead of listen then wait until after the meeting or don't come at all.

There are some who will play with their phone. Since I'm easily distracted my phone stays in my car.

I want to focus on the person who is sharing because it helps me with understanding my thoughts and feelings.

When cross-talk or disruptive behaviors occur, our chair speaks up and politely tells the 'offenders' to zip it!

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Guru

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Hey Charlie,welcome to forum..We also discussed 'children at meetings week or so ago and being disruptive etc.Lot of different feelings there also. Asking for 'atmosphere" during sharing periods usually settles group or individuals down I have seen it most always work.We are a "rough mixture of people" though and sometimes I have seen people actually stop sharing until the disruption in the room settled.Bottom line there are meetings 7 days a week in my area and folks and I do know people who won't attend certain meetings because they feel they are not condusive to their recovery,.I find that sad and not representative of our 5th tradition,but like CD says "not all are there for the right reason..Our 1st tradition says it pretty clearly"our common welfare should come first,personal recovery depends on N.A. unity"A disruptive room doesnt seem to coincide with that statement     my 2 cents! ..smile

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Guru

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Hi Charlie,,
My name is Raman and I am a addict.

I was in Glasgow and Edinburgh recetly. But could not make a meeting.

So theres been some issues there ?
I suggest that if there is no easy soluions, to take it up at Area Service committee.
Im sure that other groups would have faced this problem and found solutions.

I did hear tell hat meetings in Scotland can be pretty rough at times; I even heard that sometimes een kives were pulled out !

Then you could also ask Lenny who s the Regional Meetings Rep/ Area Service rep. from your burg !

In England, Ive found most meetings I went to very respectful of who is sharing and hope someday in the very near future , the same situation will prevail in Edinburg too !

(P.S.;;;;; I remember the time in Leshmahagow,,,,what a beutiful Scotland is indeed !!!)

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Raman an addict clean and serene just for today in NA Worldwide ; live to love and love to live the NA Way !!!


Veteran Member

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is it rude and disruptive? sometimes.

in a small meeting, even a shift in posture during sharing can be taken the wrong way. in a large meeting, a comment to your neighbor of a few words barely even goes noticed. for me, the key is to keep the focus on me, and if i have issues with another person, pray for them. if it's a recurring problem, i may have a side conversation with them after the meeting. or if it's my home group, maybe calling a business meeting to discuss and explore ways for the group to handle. (we have an IP that addresses this problem)

i'm fortunate in that this isn't much of a problem in our area, and generally we do a good job in handling disruptive members.

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Senior Member

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the big book says we are to put principles before personalities.

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Guru

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And the Baisc Text of Narcotics Anonymous, in the lead-in to the Traditions states that we keep what we have only with vigilance !!!

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Raman an addict clean and serene just for today in NA Worldwide ; live to love and love to live the NA Way !!!


Member

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Date:

Hi all...thanks very much for your input. I have been busily doing my studies and unable to participate on site for a while. So apologies for not replying sooner and thanking all for your input.

Raman, Lenny is my friend and is now ELANA Chair. Was elected as Chair on Sunday. A wise man undoubtedly and also my close friend and guide. I'll say hi to him for you.

I have now come to the point where I accept that all I can do in chair, or we can do in my homegroup collectively, is behave in a manner that is respectful of all members whilst they share. We, as a group, (Tuesday Reading Group Edinburgh) also have established that our meetings are calm, respectful of all who share, and operate with an understanding that cross talking and socialising during the meeting itself is regarded as disruptive and therefore not consistent with the need for unity. Members will laugh and that is fine. But laughing and giggling whilst a member bares their soul is highly inappropriate and is challenged as such.

As a result our meeting is very well attended, members have often remarked on how they feel a sense of calm when they enter, and we have developed an atmosphere of love that is special. A love that makes clear we need be responsible but also a love that understands that people are at where they are at. So we remind disruptive members in a non selective manner that 'members attend meetings and do so to maintain recovery...may I remind all members that the least we can do is respect those who share as sharing can often take great effort...'

That tends to ensure there is a non confrontational approach and it has worked remarkably well. If anyone feels we are going wrong as a group, feel free to offer advice as I believe we are all here to learn.

God Bless x


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Member

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There is a NA service pamphlet on Disruptive Behavior at Meetings that is quite helpful in this context, check it out family!

I guess a Chairperson can to some extent play a role in taking care of such distractions at a NA meeting, but beyond that, I've often realized that certain things as they tend to transpire in a NA meeting are beyond the Chairperson and other members.

Some members sit at the backbench, chatting away, and like a member shared above, even laughing and making fun of what one's sharing, some sit right in front of the sharing person and are busy in their mobile phones.

Some just get up and leave when a particular member starts sharing, unable to digest what is being shared...

And I've seen that these are not newcomers or relatively new NA members doing this, some well-known members and oldtimers also involve in such behavior at NA meetings, hence the newcomers feel that it's okay to do so.

Very sad state of affairs, especially when these are the meetings that saved us from jails, institutions and death, but then that's how it is at times. It takes us all and it takes all the chaos and disorder to make a NA meeting at times lol...

The other day, I saw that there's a lot of distraction from behind, lots of talking and laughing going on in the back-half of the meeting room, and I couldn't listen to what the speakers were sharing... I could choose to obsessize on these backbenchers, get angry on them, dwell on what I can do to make them quiet or behave differently etc. As a result, I will leave the meeting-room bitter about it all instead of feeling good.

So I chose to move in the front, sit more nearer to the one sharing, and focus on what's being shared. Then nothing mattered. But it could be very hurtful for the one sharing, such disruptive behavior and distractions, and at times I feel that's exactly what someone might hope to achieve through their behavior...

It's very important for me personally to remember these members who go about disturbing the meeting and also myself for getting disturbed by it when it's time to close the meeting and a moment is observed for the still-suffering addict... Doing so liberates me from my dissatisfaction and I'm able to let go, leaving the meeting with memories of only those amazing messages that I heard a member or two shared...



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"If we do an honest examination of exactly what we are giving, we are better able to evaluate the results we are getting." Chapter 10 - Emotional Pain - NA Way of Life.
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