Support Groups and 12 Step Programs
Alcoholics Anonymous meetings take place almost any time of the day or night all over the state. Because of this you should have no problem finding a meeting to attend at a place and time that is convenient for you.
If you are new to AA then don’t assume that all meetings are like the first one you attend. If you go to a particular location at a particular time, and feel like you don’t fit in with the other attendees, try a different time or location.
There are also many trade or profession specific AA groups. For example, there are AA meetings for Judges and Lawyers, Dentists, Health Care Professionals and so forth. You may benefit more from AA attendance with a group of your peers.
Once you find a meeting place time and location that suits you, you will want to learn and work the 12-steps.
The relative success of the A.A. program seems to be due to the fact that an alcoholic who no longer drinks has an exceptional faculty for “reaching” and helping an uncontrolled drinker.
In simplest form, the A.A. program operates when a recovered alcoholic passes along the story of his or her own problem drinking, describes the sobriety he or she has found in A.A., and invites the newcomer to join the informal Fellowship.
The heart of the suggested program of personal recovery is contained in Twelve Steps describing the experience of the earliest members of the Society:
The Twelve Steps of Alcoholics Anonymous
1. We admitted we were powerless over alcohol – that our lives had become unmanageable.
2. Came to believe that a Power greater than ourselves could restore us to sanity.
3. Made a decision to turn our will and our lives over to the care of God as we understood Him.
4. Made a searching and fearless moral inventory of ourselves.
5. Admitted to God, to ourselves and to another human being the exact nature of our wrongs.
6. Were entirely ready to have God remove all these defects of character.
7. Humbly asked Him to remove our shortcomings.
8. Made a list of all persons we had harmed, and became willing to make amends to them all.
9. Made direct amends to such people wherever possible, except when to do so would injurethem or others.
10. Continued to take personal inventory and when we were wrong promptly admitted it.
11. 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.
12. 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.