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Need Advise on appropriateness of an idea


Guest Kurt
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I am an adult gay male who has utilized the services of escorts for 25 years. I lost my virginity to a 70's stud prono star in San Francisco. Recreation for me is to surf escort and agency web sites. My free time is limited and I cannot thank HooBoy enough for this site. Now to my question. In my real life job, I am the Director of an Alcohol Treatment program in Phoenix. As a member of the Gay Community, I have long been aware of the impact of alcoholism on gay men and women. Alcohol seems to be one of the common threads holding the gay community together, yet at the sametime it is devestating. I have had close friends, even a former lover attack me while they were drunk. I had one escort show up once that was so drunk that he passed out on my lawn, and thought he was a no show until I found him the next morning passed out. As the Director of a gay owned and operated program, we sincerly want to provide service to the gay community. Getting the word out that there is a gay friendly, non 12 Step, medical model program is dificult. Question, would it be appropriate to buy banner ads on escort web sites. We want to get the information to gay adult males/females, and it sems to me that escort sites would be a logical place to include. I would really appreciate comments on this idea.

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I, too, am a recovering alcoholic and will soon celebrate, God willing, my eighteenth anniversary. Ever since I entered the Program I have been increasingly aware of the fact that alcoholism is as rampant in the gay community as elsewhere. I'm not sure more gay people are alcoholic than straight people, or how you'd count the bi's, but that's not the point. The point is that there are a whole lot of sick and suffering people out there and I am moved by your compassion.

 

However, buying banner space to advertise AA is absolutely and unequivocally against the Twelve Traditions. We do not promote or advertise what we have. Ours is a program of attraction, not promotion. I don't think I have ever seen paid advertising for an AA meeting anywhere or under any circumstances, and I would be very sorry to see it here. There are plenty of other ways to carry the message. In fact, the three of us are doing it right now, simply by sharing our experience, strength, and hope on this board. Also, there are gay/AA online meetings. To me, it would be a fundamental and very serious violation of the program's principles if a meeting were to advertise itself commercially. An announcement, pure and simple, is of course a different issue.

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I have lost gay friends to alcohol and I have plenty of gay friends who have reclaimed their lives from it.

It doesn't sound as if this quy is advertising AA but rather informing people who could use his services of how to contact him. Sounds good to me.

As a drinker, I wouldn't be bothered to see such a banner on as escort site.

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Guest cleverock

Advertising on escort sites

 

A couple thoughts------would escorts buy into this? It's noble but it's not really compatible with what they're trying to sell (sex, excitement, etc.) and they may be uncomfortable with it. Why not email an escort like Will Clark who is very involved in the community, etc. If he doesn't think it's a good idea, it might not be worth going further.

 

The other consideration is: who and how many people will come to you for the service? People who want substance abuse treatment often want/need intervention "right now". Flying across the country to a program that isn't covered by their HMO is infeasible on a number of levels for most people. You've got to figure out who the real market is. Once pople know you're in Phoenix, that may be the turn off, or they never get beyond looking at whatever info you have. If you seek an affluent crowd that can be moble, there may be other venues that will reach it better.

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You're right about that. Probably most of us gay people have lost lots of friends to alcoholism and drug addiction. Plus, the mind boggles to think how many men may have contracted HIV while their judgment was impaired by some "recreational" chemical they took. You're preaching to the choir when you talk about the virtues of recovery to me.

 

However, I was speaking of AA as an organization; what is or is not appropriate for that fellowship is not determined by an individual's sense of right and wrong. That's something that's decided on by the whole -- we call it "principles before personalities" and it doesn't have anything to do with what people might object to seeing. If somebody wants to buy space to advertise their own personal business, that's a different thing altogether. I was/am speaking as a member of Alcoholics Anonymous (with stress on the adjective there -- n,b, a reference to an escort who is active in "the community"). And if one wants to know whether it's appropriate, one can simply approach World Service Headquarters in New York. On the other hand, if a private individual wants to offer his professional services over the net -- as long as it doesn't mention AA or seek to profit from AA -- I certainly don't have any objection to that.

 

Concerning the escorts, I'd mention, first, that this is primarily a site for clients and, second, that only somebody who needs to read the message would object to seeing it. We post reminders about condoms and playing safe all over the place. If that's not "inappropriate" in a forum like this, I don't see why offering people a lifeline of another kind should be.

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He's not talking about AA

 

'a gay friendly, non 12 Step, medical model"

 

I did the treatment center thing when I first became sober, but I attribute the success of my sobriety to AA. But, if he wants to advertise his treatment center, I beleive he is fine to do so.

 

(I personally encourage anyone wanting lasting sobriety to join AA. There are many gay meetings in many cities. Just call the local office of Alcoholics Annonymous and ask. AA people typically won't care if you're gay or straight--only that you want to stop drinking.)

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Apologies to Kurt et al.

 

Apologies! That's what happens to my powers of concentration when I've been reading words on this bright little screen for too long. I obviously missed Kurt's clear statement that his program is "non-12 Step" and I apologize to everyone for having stuck my oar in where it didn't belong. If Kurt wants to advertise, I think that would be great.

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