12-Step groups are an essential part of any addict’s comprehensive plan of recovery. These mutual self-help support groups are invaluable in the fact that people who are in recovery can receive support and encouragement from recovering peers who are traveling the same road towards sobriety. In almost every city and town throughout the world, you can find 12-step meetings–and there is a 12-step group that focuses on almost any addiction. From alcohol and cocaine to eating disorders and even blogging, there is a 12-step group that can fit any need. The following is a list of the 4 most popular 12 step programs available to addicts.
Formed in 1935, Alcoholics Anonymous (AA) was the first 12-step group that was formed and it remains the world’s leading fellowship program. Currently, AA has a presence in over 170 countries worldwide with more than 114,000 groups that serve over two million recovering alcoholics. AA is a fellowship of men and women who come together to share their experiences as well as their strength and hope with each other that they may work through their own issues with alcohol abuse and help others to recover from the disease of alcoholism.
As with all 12-step groups, the only requirement for membership in AA is a desire to stop drinking. There are no dues or fees for AA membership and is through the contributions from their members. The group is not allied with any sect, denomination, politics, organization or institution, and members do not endorse or oppose particular viewpoints. AA’s ultimate purpose is to help its’ members stay sober.
Narcotics Anonymous (NA) is one of the numerous 12-step based programs whose program was adapted from Alcoholics Anonymous. NA was founded in 1953, but the group’s numbers remained small until 1983 when the group published their Basic Text. Currently, NA holds approximately 63,000 meetings weekly in 132 countries worldwide. Despite what the name implies, Narcotics Anonymous does not focus on any one particular drug. In fact, the group has a unique approach in the fact that it makes no distinction between drugs including alcohol.
Membership is free, and NA has no affiliation with any organizations outside of NA including governments, religions, or medical and psychiatric associations. Through their focus on community service efforts and fostering cooperation with others who seek to help addicts of all types and backgrounds, the members of NA strive to reach every addict in the world has an opportunity with their message of recovery.
Cocaine Anonymous (CA) was formed in 1982, and interestingly it was formed by a long-standing member of Alcoholics Anonymous. This founding members had organized CA due to witnessing several people encountering problems finding a support group that could adequately address the unique and specific needs of those who are addicted to cocaine. As with other 12-step groups, CA borrowed and adapted the Steps and Traditions from Alcoholics Anonymous.
While many who regularly attend Cocaine Anonymous meetings have been addicted to cocaine, crack, methamphetamine or similar substances, CA is much like Narcotics Anonymous in the fact that an addiction to cocaine is not required for membership. Throughout their literature, it is stressed that the 12 steps of CA are not drugged specific and that Cocaine Anonymous as a self-help organization is not a drug specific fellowship. CA welcomes welcome any addict, alcoholic, or otherwise problemed drug user.
It is important to recognize the fact there are 12-step groups that focus on supporting and encouraging the family and friends of those who struggle with substance abuse. The best example of this kind of 12-step group is Al-Anon. Formed in 1951, Al-Anon is a worldwide self-help organization that recognizes that family and friends of alcoholics are often severely impacted by a loved one’s drinking and need emotional support and understanding.
At Al‑Anon meetings, friends and family members of problem drinkers share their experiences and learn how to apply the principles of the Al‑Anon program to their individual situations. For younger family members and their friends, they are able to attend Alateen meetings, which are similar in structure. The ultimate goal of both groups is to help family and friends know they are not alone in the problems they face, and that they have choices that lead to greater peace of mind.
Are You Looking For Help and Support with Your Addiction?
Addiction is a complex and progressive disease which can wreak havoc on your life and those you love. If you are struggling with substance abuse and need help. pick up the phone and call Guardian Recovery Network today. Based in Delray Beach, Florida, Guardian Recovery Network is a comprehensive gender-specific program that treats adults who are suffering from drug and alcohol addiction.
Our intensive outpatient programs were designed by our team of professionals who have many years of experience in the addiction treatment field. As a result, our programs are effective, proven to work and are individualized to meet your unique and specific needs. Call us toll-free and let Guardian Recovery Network give you the tools and support you need for lifelong recovery.