Alcoholics Anonymous (AA) has been a staple in addiction treatment for almost 90 years. Unless you participate, though, it’s a process that is not well understood. Treatment centers like San Antonio Recovery Center (SARC) follow the 12-step philosophy resulting from the original AA program because it provides a solid foundation for recovery. Learn more about some of the facts and myths regarding AA and reach out today for help if you are struggling with drug or alcohol abuse.
1. Alcoholics Anonymous Isn’t Really Anonymous
In fact, this program is completely anonymous. People who participate in AA meetings give only their first names. Last names are not allowed. This helps to maintain the integrity of the group. The goal of AA is not to sit in judgment of other people but to create a sense of unity. That is easier to do when you can be anonymous as you speak to the group.
Anonymity also means that you can go to any group around. You can find a group near your home, your work, the gym, your favorite restaurant — wherever you are; chances are a group will be starting very soon. There are thousands of groups held daily in 180 nations.
2. Alcoholics Anonymous Has a Low Success Rate
No, the fact is that addiction treatment is not a one-size-fits-all concept, so AA doesn’t work for everyone. The success rate of the program also depends on who you ask. The 12-step philosophy is often just part of an overall recovery plan.
For example, San Antonio Recovery Center follows a 12-step philosophy, but that is just a slice of what they do for those working towards long-term sobriety. Recovery at SARC tends to include:
- Detox: If you’re coming off of a serious addiction, it’s important to rid your body of all drugs and alcohol. This can be done in a medically-supervised setting where 24/7 care is provided.
- Residential care: Once you’ve detoxed, you may feel like you can tackle sobriety on your own. But for many, being in an environment where drinking and using are not present is vital for early recovery.
- Intensive outpatient treatment: IOP is a happy medium for those who don’t need 24/7 care, but still benefit from being in a structured environment several days per week.
- Outpatient services: Outpatient treatment is the least intensive level of care. It’s typically best for those who have completed a more intensive treatment program and are working to maintain their sobriety.
Going to meetings is a part of all of that combined. Alcoholics Anonymous provides a strong support network for those trying to maintain their sobriety. It also helps someone who relapses get back on track. It is safe to say that if the success rate really were low, there wouldn’t be as many groups out there still after all these decades of existence.
3. AA Keeps Track of Members
There is no formal membership for AA, and there are no fees to participate and no dues to pay. In some cases, they may accept donations to cover the cost of the donuts and coffee, but other than that, it is a completely free service.
4. In AA, Your Sponsor is in Charge
That is a myth. An AA sponsor isn’t there to keep you on a leash. Having a sponsor is all about support. This person helps you navigate the program and the steps and is there if you need to reach out to someone. Most people find they develop a very special relationship with their AA sponsor.
5. AA Means You Have to Speak
Meeting participation in Alcoholics Anonymous is voluntary. It is helpful for your recovery if you speak when the time is right, though. If you are taking part in 12-steps meetings as part of your treatment at SARC, they might encourage you to be an active participant as part of your therapy, but it is always your choice. If it feels like the right time to tell your story, AA ensures there are people ready to listen.
Contact San Antonio Recovery Center
San Antonio Recovery Center offers a full spectrum treatment of affordable program that includes:
- Gender-specific services: We understand that men and women are different and require unique approaches in order to recover.
- 90-day treatment programs: In order to achieve long-term sobriety, a person may need to receive treatment for an extended period of time.
- Aftercare services: Our goal is to help you transition back into society and live a sober, productive life.
- Yoga therapy: Our yoga therapy program helps to relax the mind and body, and promote healing.
- Meditation therapy: This helps to encourage mindfulness and peace of mind.