Twelve Steps to Danger: How Alcoholics Anonymous Can Be a Playground for Violence-Prone Members

narcotics anonymous vs alcoholic anonymous

In a discussion meeting, members are given opportunities to speak and share their experiences. There may also be readings or group discussions about particular topics. Speaker meetings give members a chance to talk for longer. The group’s facilitator will ask at the beginning of the meeting if there are any new members in attendance. This is your chance to raise your hand and introduce yourself. There will be people at the meeting who are also new to the program.

Still, researchers found that there may be some benefits in going to NA meetings for people who are taking BMT. Many experts agree that socializing with others and doing service work can be powerful tools for those recovering from addiction. Virtual meetings are an option if you’re concerned about COVID. Many meetings are hybrid, so you can choose to attend in person or remotely. And in 2012, Sean Calahan was on probation in Montana after jail time for molesting a 12-year-old girl. Among Lake County Court’s demands for the first-time offender were that he attend AA meetings regularly, remain abstinent from alcohol, and not enter into any relationships with women.

You may also hear people reciting the serenity prayer or the 12 Traditions. After that, you’ll find that meetings are all quite different from each other. Some meetings may include speakers, or people sharing about their experiences. Others will involve discussions or reading from a chosen textbook.

narcotics anonymous vs alcoholic anonymous

The steps were adapted by other groups, including those dependent on narcotics, those with gambling compulsions, and overeaters. At some point in early 2011, Karla went to a 12-step meeting at the sober-living home where Earle was living at the time. Such facilities serve as interim housing for people recently released from rehab or as an alternative to incarceration. Earle’s former roommate, John, said Earle quickly noticed Karla.

Three of these that are indispensable are honesty, open-mindedness, and willingness. There’s a good chance there’s an AA or NA meeting happening near right you now. Even small towns tend to have at least one daily AA or NA meeting, but you must find them. You can use the AA Resource Guide ambien or the NA Find-a-Meeting Guide to find a 12 step meeting near you. Finally, though AA and NA are meant to help people through discussions and readings, Patterson says meetings can become triggers for some people. In Marlon’s first year of recovery, he left his job, got a divorce, and moved.

Alternatives to AA and NA

AA and NA literature, like the Big Books, are full of the reasoning behind the 12 steps and tools to help navigate sobriety. Evidence from multiple lines of research supports the effectiveness and practical importance of Alcoholics Anonymous and Narcotics Anonymous. Conference presenters discussed the relationship between 12-Step participation and abstinence among various populations, including adolescents, women, and urban drug users. Insight from the arts and humanities placed empirical findings in a holistic context.

There is only one requirement for membership, the desire to stop using. We suggest that you keep an open mind and give yourself a break. Our programme is a set of principles written so simply that we can follow them in our daily lives.

  1. Today, it holds more than 70,000 regular meetings in 144 countries.
  2. The goal of 12 step meetings is not to divide through rejection or dismiss due to misunderstanding but teach the 12 steps to help an addict or alcoholic achieve happiness and sobriety.
  3. Patterson believes CBT can be a helpful tool when done in conjunction with a 12-step program or SMART Recovery, though plenty of people find CBT helpful on its own.
  4. In 2010, a Hawaii judge mandated that Clayborne Conley, a troubled Iraq veteran, must attend AA after nine months in a state psychiatric hospital.
  5. The group’s official position is that the only criteria for membership is a desire to stop using drugs.
  6. The Oxford Group, an evangelical Christian fellowship that flourished in the United States and England in the early 1900s, had a strong influence on the origins of AA.

He was able to abide only by the first condition, according to court documents published in the Leader Advertiser, a Montana newspaper. His probation officers discovered alcohol in his possession, along with a diary in which he admitted to preying on women at AA meetings, precisely because they were fragile. During those shaky days, the two women strove to help each other adjust to life without illicit substances.

How to Choose Between Narcotics Anonymous and Alcoholics Anonymous

In step 8, you make a list of people you’ve harmed and become willing to make amends. The structure is also rigid, with steps generally done in a specific order. For one, if you’re undergoing medication-assisted treatment for opioid use disorder, NA may not be the best option. Addiction is complex, so it makes sense that there wouldn’t be a one-size-fits-all approach to recovery.

narcotics anonymous vs alcoholic anonymous

When you attend AA, you are attending a group that is based upon helping people who struggle with alcoholism. NA focuses on helping people who struggle with all drugs, barbiturate withdrawal symptoms including alcohol. In addition, there is a small difference in each group’s approach to The Twelve Step Program, and it all begins with the very first step.

Drugs & Supplements

These organizations have been pivotal in helping millions of people attain and sustain abstinence. Anyone can drop in an open meeting, including friends and relatives, community members, and college students studying substance abuse. Closed meetings are reserved only for those with addiction issues. This often helps members feel more comfortable about opening up.

Fearing for his sobriety Bill W called churches and hospitals before connecting to Dr. Bob, an Ohio surgeon who had tried to stop drinking several times with no success. In alcohol withdrawal syndrome some meetings, attendees are invited to share burning desires. Other times, speakers may share their journeys with a major focus on their previous drug or alcohol use.

Brief History of Narcotics Anonymous

Whether it’s AA or NA, find a meeting that you’re comfortable attending and that you believe will help you progress. What if you’re an alcoholic but are also addicted to cocaine? Those with multiple addictions should simply choose the 12-step meeting they’re most comfortable with. Any drug addict can get help in AA and any alcoholic can get help in NA – it’s all about what you think will work best for you. Alcoholics Anonymous (or AA) began in 1935 by two men who had one unified goal.

The Difference Between Alcoholics Anonymous (AA) and Narcotics Anonymous (NA)

But early that spring two years ago, she told her parents and younger sister that she had met a charming, kind and handsome man who understood what she had been through. In the spring of 2011, Karla Brada Mendez finally seemed happy. She was 31 and in love, eager to move ahead on the path to maturity – marriage, a family, stability. There is one thing more than anything else that will defeat us in our recovery; this is an attitude of indifference or intolerance toward spiritual principles.


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