Lois Wilson Story, when love is not enough

by Daniel · 1 comment

“I believe that people are good if you give them half a chance and that good is more powerful than evil.” Lois Wilson

If you had the opportunity to watch Wynona Ryder portray Lois Wilson the co-founder of Alanon and wife of Bill Wilson the co-founder of Alcoholics Anonymous (AA) you were treated to a powerful and emotional view of the life and development of mutual help recovery.  Over the past thirty years I have not fully grasped the significance that AA and Alanon has played in the treatment of alcoholism.  I utilize the term treatment and not recovery purposefully.  Up until 1934 alcoholism was an extremely baffling and insidious public health dilemma.  Treatment consisted of “Drying Out” tied down in a psychiatric unit or “drunk tank” a jail cell.

Surely there were lotions and potions springing up throughout the course of time, elixirs, similar to weight loss pills and diet fads today.  On April 19,2010 in the Health section of the New York Times reported one such claim dating back to 1909.  The article was titled “An Alcoholic’s Savior: God, Belladonna  or both?” Until 1934 when Ebby Thatcher approached Bill with his new found sobriety and principles for living of the Oxford Group, alcoholics, addicts, problem drinkers and anyone in between had little hope to recover.

The portrayal of this epic story in our history brought to life an emotional conviction of gratitude in me as I watched the show unfold.  Every fiber in my body felt the power of this historical event.  My entry into recovery began in 1980, nine years after Bill W. died, I was just shy of my twentieth birthday.  AA was 45 years strong and booming in New York.  By the time I got sober in 1988, Lois too had passed on.  AA was a program and a fellowship that to be honest was the only viable option for recovery for most people.  The significance of Bill and Lois Wilson and the foundation of mutual help groups never truly impacted me until last night as I watched in amazement.

When the show ended, I hit my knees in gratitude for these human beings and to God.  The only thing I could think to say was thank you, thank you, thank you!  Life is good!

Go, Go, Go…

Dan 🙂

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