How It Works: Step 4 (Sex Conduct)

How It Works: Step 4 – (Sex Conduct)

Pages 68 – 71

  1. What is an “over-hauling”?
  2. Why is it to “get way off track”?
  3. Describe in your own words the difference between the two (2) voices which comment about sex.
  4. What does this sentence mean to you, “One school would allow man no flavor for his fare and the other would have us all on a straight pepper diet.”?
  5. Why would AA want to stay out of this controversy?
  6. What is an “arbiter”?
  7. Why do we NOT want to be the “arbiter” of anyone’s sex conduct?
  8. What does the phrase “sex conduct” mean?
  9. What is one of the signs of being human, according to the Big Book?
  10. Is there an answer to the question, “What can we do about them?”
    1. (HINT:  The answer is YES!  We can follow through on our 3rd Step decision by working Steps 4 – 12..)
  11. Did your “sex conduct” as a man or woman hurt other people?
  12. Did your conduct ever unjustifiably arouse jealousy, suspicion or bitterness?  Why would these be in an inventory if this portion was only about sexual activities?  Do you think they fit if this inventory is about your conduct as a man or woman?
  13. Where do we put the answers to the next question, “What should we have done instead?”   Once it is on paper, what do we do?  Why do you think Bill instructs us to do that?
  14. On paper, we are shape a “sane and sound ideal” for our future sex lives.  What do you think the phrase, “sane and sound” means within the context of our sex lives?
  15. Can God actually “mold your ideals”?  If possible, what are your thoughts on how He may do this?
  16. Do you honestly want to ask/pray that God mold your ideals and help you live up to them?  Why or why not?
  17. Who gave us our “sex powers”?  Are they good?
  18. What must we be willing to do regardless of our ideals?
  19. What does “grow towards” mean to you?  Does this imply that we have the right ideal currently or that growth should follow to discover it?
  20. Should we make amends for our conduct in this realm of life?  Are there any conditions?
  21. Do we treat sex differently than other problems?
  22. What do we ask God about in our morning meditations?
  23. Will the right answers come?  Under what condition?
  24. Who alone can judge our sex situation?  Who can God use to help us discern His will?
  25. After writing our new ideal, what if we fall short?  Will we get drunk?  Why or why not?
  26. To sum up about sex, what four things do we pray for?
  27. What does the word earnestly mean?
  28. What is “right” ideal?  What is your source of information on this?
  29. Why would we need guidance?
  30. Why would Bill use the word sanity when speaking of sexuality?
  31. Is there such a thing as sexual sanity?
  32. Why would you need to be “strengthened” to do the “right thing”?
  33. How would God actually “strengthen” you to do the “right thing”?
  34. What should we do if sex is very “troublesome”?
  35. What does “troublesome” mean to you?
  36. What two things have we begun to comprehend about our resentments?
  37. What have we begun to learn?
  38. How have we begun to see our enemies?
  39. What are we now willing to straighten out?
  40. What did for us, that we could not do for ourselves?
  41. Do you believe that God can remove whatever self-will has blocked you off from Him?
  42. What two things consummate the beginning of working your program?

 

Now that you studied the literature…let’s BEGIN our 4th Step on Sex Conduct…

  1. Download the 4th Step Inventory Form for SEX CONDUCT.
    1. This is the form that has worked well for us.
  2. IMPORTANT:  We will be working DOWN these sheets, NOT ACROSS!
  3. On Page 65, the Big Book tells us “to go back” through our lives.  Start with any SEX CONDUCT you have right now and work backwards.
  4. Write your FEARS in Column #1.  (Stay in Column #1)
    1. Any SEX CONDUCT in your mind right now
    2. Any SEX CONDUCT connected to your RESENTMENTS and FEARS (Check Marked on your RESENTMENT INVENTORY and your FEAR INVENTORY)
    3. Any SEX CONDUCT in addition to these (See LIST of POTENTIAL SEX CONDUCT POINTS for assistance.)
  5. GOOD WORK!  All writing has been down in Column #1!
  6. Now, moving to Column #2, answer this question for all SEX CONDUCT.
    1. “What did you do?”
    2. Review the Big Book Example on Page 65 and see how Bill uses short phrases, not full stories to describe his Column #2 information.
      1. BIG BOOK EXAMPLES FROM PAGE 65
        1. His attention to my wife.
        2. Told my wife about my mistress.
        3. Brown may get my job in the office.
        4. She is a nut.
        5. She snubbed me.
      2. NOTICE THAT SOME OF THESE ASSESSMENTS ARE NOT NECESSARILY NICE, SOME ARE OUT-RIGHT MEAN.  IT DOESN’T MATTER AT THIS POINT.  JUST WRITE HONESTLY WHAT IS ON YOUR HEART AND MAKE THE POINTS SHORT.
    3. Complete Column #2 on all your SEX CONDUCT before moving onto Column #3
  7. As we approach Column #3
    1. Some points of interest.
    2. All people have at least three (3) Basic Instincts in Life.
      1. Social Instinct – The yearning for relationship with self and with others.
        1. Relationship with Self – Self-Esteem
        2. Relationship with Others – Personal Relationship
      2. Security Instinct – The yearning for safety in their material well being and safety in giving and receiving love.
        1. Material
        2. Emotional
      3. Sex Instinct – The yearning for reproducing and life-long sacramental intimacy.
        1. Acceptable Sex Relations
        2. Hidden Sex Relations
      4. In addition, we all have Ambitions to satisfy each of these three (3) Basic Instincts of Life (Social, Security and Sex).
  8. Now, moving onto Column #3.  Again, work DOWNWARD by columns.
  9. Ask yourself this question, “Has this SEX CONDUCT affected my …” 
    1. …Social Instinct in regards to my Self-Esteem? 
      1. Check the Self-Esteem boxes, working downward, if this SEX CONDUCT has affected your Self-Esteem.  Complete all your SEX CONDUCT before moving onto Personal Relationships.
    2. …Social Instinct in regards to my Personal Relationships? 
      1. Check the Personal Relationships boxes, working downward, if this SEX CONDUCT has affected your Personal Relationships.  Complete all your SEX CONDUCT before moving onto Material Security.
    3. …Security Instinct in regards to my Material Security? 
      1. Check the Material Security boxes, working downward, if this SEX CONDUCT has affected your Material Security.  Complete all your SEX CONDUCT before moving onto Emotional Security.
    4. …Security Instinct in regards to my Emotional Security? 
      1. Check the Emotional Security boxes, working downward, if this SEX CONDUCT has affected your Emotional Security.  Complete all your SEX CONDUCT before moving onto Acceptable Sex Relations.
    5. …Sex Instinct in regards to my Acceptable Sex Relations? 
      1. Check the Acceptable Sex Relations boxes, working downward, if this SEX CONDUCT has affected your Acceptable Sex Relations.  Acceptable Sex Relations is defined by this, “Sexual behavior that I would not feel public shame about.”  Complete all your SEX CONDUCT before moving onto Hidden Sex Relations.
    6. …Sex Instinct in regards to my Hidden Sex Relations? 
      1. Check the Hidden Sex Relations boxes, working downward, if this SEX CONDUCT has affected your Hidden Sex Relations.  Acceptable Sex Relations are defined by this, “Sexual behavior that I would feel public shame about.”  Complete all your SEX CONDUCT before moving onto Ambitions.
    7. “Ambitions” are concerned with obsessive demands to get my Instincts met or a desire to retreat/run away from the opportunities to get my Instincts met.
    8. …Ambitions in regards to fulfilling my Social Instincts?
      1. Check the  boxes, working downward, if this SEX CONDUCT has affected your Ambitions for fulfilling your Social Instinct.  Complete all your SEX CONDUCT before moving onto Security Instinct.
    9. …Ambitions in regards to fulfilling my Security Instincts?
      1. Check the  boxes, working downward, if this SEX CONDUCT has affected your Ambitions for fulfilling your Security Instinct.  Complete all your SEX CONDUCT before moving onto Sex Instinct.
    10. …Ambitions in regards to fulfilling my Sex Instinct?
      1. Check the  boxes, working downward, if this SEX CONDUCT has affected your Ambitions for fulfilling your Sex Instinct.  Complete all your SEX CONDUCT before moving onto Column #4.
  10. Now we PRAY the 4th STEP SEX CONDUCT PRAYERS on page 70.  “We earnestly pray for the right ideal, for guidance in each questionable situation, for sanity, and for strength to do the right thing.”
  11. Also, if sex is very troublesome, we throw ourselves into helping others.
  12. COLUMN #4:  Page 67, “Referring to our list again. Putting out of our minds the wrongs others had done, we resolutely looked for our own mistakes.
    1. Where had we been selfish, dishonest, self-seeking and frightened?
    2. Though a situation had not been entirely our fault, we tried to disregard the other person involved entirely. Where were we to blame?
    3. The inventory was ours, not the other man’s.
    4. When we saw our faults we listed them.
    5. We placed them before us in black and white.
    6. We admitted our wrongs honestly and were willing to set these matters straight.
  13. Go to Column #4, working downward and check the exact nature of your wrongs?
    1. Check the Selfish boxes, working downward, if you Selfishly played a role, any role of any size, in this situation.  Complete all your SEX CONDUCT before moving onto Dishonest.
    2. Check the Dishonest boxes, working downward, if you acted Dishonestly in any way in this situation.  Complete all your SEX CONDUCT before moving onto Self-seeking & Frightened.
    3. Check the Self-seeking & Frightened boxes, working downward, if you acted in a Frightened manner in this situation.  Complete all your SEX CONDUCT before moving onto Inconsiderate.
    4. Check the Inconsiderate boxes, working downward, if you acted in an Inconsiderate manner toward anyone, at anytime in this situation.

NEW SEX IDEAL:  Page 69

  1. Subject each relation to this question, “Was it selfish or not?”
  2. Write down where we were at fault.
  3. Write down the answer to this question for each specific matter, “What should we have done instead?”
  4. Look at it!  Take it in…
  5. Prayerfully ask God to mold your ideals
  6. Prayerfully ask God to help you live up to them.
  7. Remember that your sex powers are God-given and therefore good.
  8. These powers should not be used lightly or selfishly, neither should they be despised or loathed.
  9. Based on your writing and praying, write down your new sex ideal.
  10. Ask God to help you be willing to grow toward His ideal.
  11. Ask God for the willingness to make amends where you have harmed someone, provided that you do not bring about even more harm in doing so.
  12. Ask God what you should do about each specific matter.
  13. God alone can judge your sex situation. (Read your new ideal to God and ask Him to show you the possible “loopholes” in it.)

If you have followed these directions, you have completed the 4th Step and you are on your way to completing Step 3!  You have done an HONEST ASSESSMENT, done a lot of WRITING and PRAYED!  Congratulations on finishing your Step 4!

**Big Book Study: Chapter 6: Into Action: Step 5

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