How Alcoholics Anonymous Started
Many people that were alcoholics were able to get over the condition through the help of the groups such as Alcoholics Anonymous. Alcoholics Anonymous was founded in 1935 by Bill Wilson and Dr. Bob Smith both of whom were alcoholics, aiming to encourage others to quit and remain sober. 12 steps were developed by the pair to go on the meetings of AA. They later also introduced the 12 traditions further to help define the purpose within the group. The 12 Steps are still followed, and many recovered alcoholics say belonging to an AA group saw them through the recovery journey.
Today, Alcoholics Anonymous has more than 2,000,000 active members all over the world and more than 50 thousand of support groups countrywide.
What You Will Find At An AA Meeting
It is always quite challenging the first time you go for the meeting if you are not aware of what goes on there. This is to be expected because the meetings involve telling people whom you've probably never met that you're an addict and that you need assistance. It however gets easy becomes all the members share a common experience like yours. The founders of the AA were themselves alcoholics and the groups follow the original model to this day. Everybody in the AA programs even those running them has gone through the program at some point, so they empathize with members.
New members are made to feel comfortable The best way to recover is through opening up about your journey but it is not mandatory to speak in the meetings. AA realises that there are people who feel uncomfortable when sharing info about private matters during their first visit. In the course of time, most of the attendees realise great healing power of the open honest debating at these meetings.
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Difference Between Closed And Open Meetings
Only recovering alcoholics or those trying to get on the path to recovery are allowed to attend closed AA meetings.
Open meetings, on the other hand, admit family and friends of the alcoholic members. You may choose the type of meeting you feel comfortable attending. For some people, it is preferable to separate their normal lives from their recovery. These meetings can provide alcoholics the support needed by their loved ones and many are known to gain from this benefit.
The Twelve Steps For AA
Alcoholics Anonymous is the first group that came up with the 12 stages of achieving addiction recovery which is currently being used by other communities. These steps are written one after another, but group members realise that in fact they go in a circle. The member needs to be comfortable with every step before they can move to the next stage.
The initial step requires an alcoholic to admit that he or she has a problem and needs help to overcome the same. Admitting and accepting your mistakes, making an effort to correct these errors and deciding to always try and improve are some of the steps that follow. Learn more about the twelve steps here.
Why Some People Do Not Go To AA
Most people are not comfortable with attending a meeting with AA and therefore, come up with reasons not to attend. The resistance people have towards attending AA include
- They don't see if they'll get the assistance they need
- They are afraid of confronting someone they know
- They aren't sure they really have a problem
These arguments may seem meaningful to somebody who is already in doubt about attending a meeting; however, you should keep in mind why you were considering going there in the first place.
The bottom line out here is that if you feel there is a problem you are probably right. There will be no harm for you if you go to a meeting; besides, it can potentially save you from years of suffering caused by your addiction.
Looking For An Alcoholics Anonymous Group
No matter where you live, there certainly is an AA group nearby. It's easy to attend these meetings because the groups tend to meet up regularly. We can help you identify the AA meetings near your location and you can choose the type of meeting you want to attend. Contact us on 0800 246 1509 today and we'll help you find an AA group that will suit you best.