Alcoholics Anonymous: The 12-Step Treatment Alcoholics Anonymous: The 12-Step Treatment The 12-step program used by Alcoholics Anonymous is a well-known treatment method that’s used for many types of addiction, not just alcohol. Alcoholics are encouraged to “work” the 12-steps. The first step involves admitting the powerlessness over alcohol. The second step has the alcoholic believe that there is some type of a greater power working that will help aide the alcoholic to reach sobriety, as well as maintain is once reached.
This step is an example of the religious influence on the 12-step recovery process. Alcoholics Anonymous is not a religion, it is a spiritual program. In a religion you do certain things or act certain ways to gain God’s favor. Alcoholics Anonymous is a growing relationship between you and God. You will not hear in Alcoholics Anonymous that you have to act a certain way, though people will often make suggestions that work for them. Alcoholics Anonymous believes “come as you are” even a rough concept of God will be a good starting place.
Alcoholics Anonymous does not ask you to believe in God in the same way that they do. Although it is common that many would agree that the program is based upon Biblical principles. You will usually not hear the name of Jesus much in Alcoholics Anonymous. The idea of the “Higher Power” is to draw people who may not be as open about God into the fellowship without scaring them off. A lot of people may have had bad experiences in churches and think the experiences are from God. There are people from all faiths in Alcoholics Anonymous, some of which have a God or “Higher Power” different from others.
The steps continue to involve the healing process. One of them asks that the drinker to go to any friends or family that have been hurt by alcoholism and apologize. Another step asks the drinker to take a sponsor. A sponsor is also an alcoholic who has been sober for a longer amount of time. The sponsor helps the recovering alcoholic make it through the steps. Throughout their recovery, alcoholics will also get chips. The chips are usually different colors, depending on how long the alcoholic has been sober. The final two steps of Alcoholics
Anonymous involve “taking inventory” of your life and understanding why you did what you did when drunk. These are called the drinker’s motivations. Step 12 talks about three major parts the alcoholic should have accomplished. They are having had a spiritual awakening, practicing the lessons learned in Alcoholics Anonymous, and carrying the message of recovery to other alcoholics. The final step seems like a lifetime step. It is practiced by the drinker, along with the other steps for the rest of their life. It stresses the amount of work they must put in for the program to work for them.
It is said that, once completed, the alcoholic has a lifetime of recovery. Alcoholism is a disease that most alcoholics will admit never goes away. Alcoholics need ongoing treatment and support. There is always a chance to “fall off the wagon. ” Alcoholics should enter a long-term treatment facility, go through detox, join Alcoholics Anonymous and attend meetings regularly. The longer an alcoholic receives treatment, the better the chances for becoming sober and being able to stay that way. In conclusion, though the 12-steps may be a life changer for some.
The 12-steps are not a one-size fits all method, in fact for many it has failed to suit their needs. The best way to stay sober is simply through abstinence. It is the only true “cure” of alcoholism. Alcoholism is said to be a disease by many doctors and psychologists. It is a disease because once the person becomes addicted, they cannot stop drinking. It is beyond their control. They cause physical harm to themselves and others. Their health declines and death by alcoholism is not uncommon. That is why it is better if someone who is more likely to drink and enjoy it to abstain all together.
Drinking in moderation works for some people, but for alcoholics, there really is no other choice. For the sake of their own lives, for their family and friends, and for society as a whole, alcoholics should pursue the most effective treatment and help everyone fight the terrible disease of alcoholism. References Dick, B. (1998). Utilizing Early A. A. ‘s Spiritual Roots for Recovery Today. Good Book Publishing Company. Services, A. A. , & Anonymous, A. (1981). Twelve steps and twelve traditions. AA World Services, Inc.