By: Shannon Persad
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What is Alcoholics Anonymous?
On your journey to recovery, you will find many support groups that are specific to certain substances. The most popular is known as Alcoholics Anonymous, also known as AA. There are many groups where anyone can join, no matter what they are addicted to, but Alcoholics Anonymous began the movement and also birthed the 12-step program.
According to the National Institute on Alcohol Abuse and Alcoholism (NIAAA), “Although AA has the largest following, groups catering to populations with different demographics and preferences (e.g., women and younger people) also can be found.”
The main goal of AA is to become free from alcohol addiction. Various sources provide in-depth information about AA, and how you can become involved.
What is AA, and How Can I Be Involved?
To become an AA member, all you have to do is find a group near you, which is provided on the official website at Alcoholics Anonymous. No membership or dues required it is entirely free.
AA has a set of steps and traditions they must follow such as the Twelve Steps and the Twelve Traditions.
The Twelve Steps of AA include:
- We admitted we were powerless over alcohol—that our lives had become unmanageable.
- Came to believe that a Power greater than ourselves could restore us to sanity.
- Made a decision to turn our will and our lives over to the care of God as we understood him.
- Made a searching and fearless moral inventory of ourselves.
- Admitted to God, to ourselves, and to another human being the exact nature of our wrongs.
- We’re entirely ready to have God remove all these defects of character.
- Humbly asked Him to remove our shortcomings.
- Made a list of all persons we had harmed, and became willing to make amends to them all.
- Made direct amends to such people wherever possible, except when to do so would injure them or others.
- Continued to take personal inventory and when we were wrong promptly admitted it.
- Sought through prayer and meditation to improve our conscious contact with God as we understood him, praying only for knowledge of His will for us and the power to carry that out.
- Having had a spiritual awakening as the result of these steps, we tried to carry this message to alcoholics, and to practice these principles in all our affairs.
The Twelve Traditions of AA can be found here.
If you are a recovering alcoholic, it may be in your best interest to join an AA group by first going over to www.aa.org.
If you or someone you know is suffering from alcohol addiction, seek professional help now.