Just about everyone has heard of Alcoholics Anonymous, which is a support group offered to those suffering from addiction to alcohol. The idea behind the group, is that the members meet regularly to discuss the trials and tribulations of their experience overcoming their addiction.
The Alcoholics Anonymous program generally includes:
- Admitting to the fact that they have no control over their alcohol consumption, and that their life revolves around drinking.
- Recognizing the key figures in their life that they have harmed emotionally, or even physically through their addiction, and be willing to recover those relationships.
- Being offered the chance to become religious or turn to God if they choose to do so.
- Choosing not to regret the past, but rather moving into a brighter future.
- Above all else, the sole requirement of the membership is to stop drinking.
Recommended Read: The 5-Day Alcohol Detox Program
It is based on a 12-step program which was first developed by Bill Wilson and Bob Smith in 1935. The program is governed by the idea that alcoholism isn’t a lack of willpower, but rather a disease. Both of the founders of the 12 step program believed that “Turning one’s life, and will, over to a personally meaning ‘higher power’ is the key to recovery”. Globally, Alcoholics Anonymous has over 2 million members across 115,000 groups, however the success rate of members reaching sobriety remains a topic of skepticism.
This could be due to the many complex factors that are intertwined into an alcoholic’s life, with relapse being quite common. It is believed around 8-12% of members find success through Alcoholics Anonymous, which is far from an impressive success rate.
This embodies principals that assist in general coping skills, to help an alcoholic overcome the many challenges and hurdles that arise through attempting to give up their drinking including:Relapse prevention.
- The belief in the ability to abstain from alcohol.
- The expectations that a bottle of alcohol will bring to the user will be challenged.
- Identifying high risk situations that trigger drinking, such as high workload in the office or family pressures, and building coping skills to deal with those specific situations.