When you are struggling with alcohol abuse or addiction, you may be wondering if Alcoholics Anonymous is right for you. It’s important to know that Alcoholics Anonymous is by itself not a professionally-run treatment program. However, it can offer you a strong, supportive community both before and after you go through detox, and initial addiction treatment through a professional facility. Here’s what you need to know about Alcoholics Anonymous and how to tell if it’s the right choice on your path to life in recovery:
What Exactly Is Alcoholics Anonymous?
There’s a good chance you’re at least a little familiar with the sobriety-focused organization, or as it is commonly known, “AA”. Launched back in 1935 in Ohio, the now-international group has become practically synonymous with those who are trying to recover from alcohol addiction. Groups typically meet at least once a week or more, sharing their stories of both substance abuse and sobriety, and offering one another support.
AA is also well-known for its “12 steps” of recovery, which are traditionally spiritual in nature. That said, advocates in recent years have explained that these steps are not necessarily religious and can be adopted by people of all beliefs. Essentially, these steps provide a basic guide towards sobriety. It begins with admitting your problem and that you have become powerless under your addiction. The steps then gradually progress through ways you can make steady changes, make amends with those who have been affected by your addiction, and regain control over your life.
Why People Choose AA
In addition to the “steps”, people are drawn to AA for other reasons. The community support is a big one, and many participants feel inspired by others’ stories and comforted in knowing that they are not alone in their experiences. The group also provides a means of accountability towards others, and many find themselves increasingly likely to make healthy decisions when they are checking in with other people in addiction recovery each week.
In fact, most professional addiction treatment programs highly recommend that recovering addicts find a strong support system during their recovery (and life in sobriety). Especially for those whose relationships may have suffered during alcohol abuse, AA can serve as a supportive frontline. It is this sense of community and place of belonging that draws many people to AA groups in the first place, and it is also what helps members stay.
There’s also the anonymity factor. While those who attend meetings will obviously recognize you if they see you in public, they are expected to not share your name or story with others. While attending a meeting, you yourself are under no obligation to share your real name (though you are welcome to do so). Likewise, when discussing AA publicly or with anyone outside the program, members are also expected to not share their own personal names or the names of others in the program.
Can I Attend AA If I Have a Different Addiction?
There are different kinds of AA meetings. Open meetings are public and may be attended by both alcoholics and non-alcoholics alike, and because of this the local supportive community is often quite extensive. Furthermore, a lot of people attending AA meetings have been in addiction recovery for quite some time. Many people struggling with other substance abuse problems do so because the belief system can easily be generalized to drugs and other addictions. Aside from AA, there are a variety of other 12-step programs geared towards different substances.
Do I Still Need to Go Through Addiction Treatment?
Life in recovery is within your grasp — now you just need to find the best way to get there. While some people do manage to reach sobriety through AA groups alone, the truth is that many others need the focused care that comes with professional addiction treatment programs. After all, AA typically only provides guidance. To get actual medical supervision through detox and onto the first steps of sobriety, you will need the more hands-on approach that comes with a professional treatment program. If you are like most people and are unsure about what approach would be best, it’s wise to reach out to a treatment counselor for more information about your options.
Laguna View Detox Is Here For You
To learn more about professional addiction treatment for alcohol and other substances, reach out to our team at Laguna View Detox. We offer a variety of comprehensive treatment programs that can help you detox and achieve sobriety in a relaxing, luxurious setting. While we encourage you to find outside sources of support (like Alcoholics Anonymous) that can help you stay on track, we will help you go through the important steps of actually freeing your body from dependence on substances. Reach out to us today to learn more.