The community of Alcoholics Anonymous has been providing necessary support and healing to recovering alcoholics for nearly 80 years. Alcoholics Anonymous was started in 1935 by Dr. Bob Smith and Bill Wilson who were both recovering addicts as a fellowship with the aim of encouraging other alcoholics on the path to recovery to stay sober. The journey to recovery is aided by the 12 stages that guide the operations of AA. The 12 Steps are still followed, and many recovered alcoholics say belonging to an AA group saw them through the recovery journey.
There are over 50,000 recovering alcoholics that are part of Alcoholics Anonymous group in the country and over 2 million around the globe.
If you've never been to one before, it may be daunting to attend an AA meeting. Opening up about your condition to people that you have just met is always the hard part for the new members. The great thing is those in the room understand you completely and feel what you are feeling. It must be understood that the organisation was founded by recovering alcoholics, and the model has served the community well even to this day. Every individual within AA has been through a problem before and has cultivated a unique feeling of community and understanding among recovering alcoholics.
The reception to the AA meeting is always amazing. New attendees are encouraged to join the discussion, but it is not required. 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.
Closed AA meeting is open only for people who are recovering alcohol addicts or the people who are interested in knowing more about how to overcome their addiction.
Partners, family and pals are allowed to attend open meetings. 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. However, some people recover faster when their families and friends are near them.
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. It involves following one stage t the next throughout the whole recovery process. The member needs to be comfortable with every step before they can move to the next stage.
Accepting the fact that you are suffering from alcoholism is usually the first stage you go through. Further steps include the following: making a firm decision to quit; admitting all your wrongs to yourself and others; making amends for all wrongdoings; and commitment to permanent improvement. You can read more about the 12 steps here.
Most people are not comfortable with attending a meeting with AA and therefore, come up with reasons not to attend. Some of their common objections are the following:
These excuses may seem insurmountable, but the most important thing is to keep your eyes on what you want to achieve.
The bottom line out here is that if you feel there is a problem you are probably right. Alcoholism can cause you many years of misery and in the long run you'll realise just how much attending these meetings may save you from.
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. Choose the kind of a meeting you want to attend - a closed or open one - and in what area, and you will be able to find a group online using our meeting finder. Let us provide you the help to find an AA group today please contact 0800 246 1509.