Alcoholics Anonymous, the worldwide fellowship of sobriety seekers, is the most effective path to abstinence, according to a comprehensive analysis conducted by a Stanford School of Medicine researcher and his collaborators. After evaluating 35 studies — involving the work of scientists and the outcomes of 10, participants — Keith Humphreys, PhD, professor of psychiatry and behavioral sciences, and his fellow investigators determined that AA was nearly always found to be more effective than psychotherapy in achieving abstinence. In addition, most studies showed that AA participation lowered health care costs. AA works because it’s based on social interaction, Humphreys said, noting that members give one another emotional support as well as practical tips to refrain from drinking. Cochrane requires its authors to undertake a rigorous process that ensures the studies represented in its summaries are high-quality and the review of evidence is unbiased. Although AA is well-known and used by millions around the world, mental health professionals are sometimes skeptical of its effectiveness, Humphreys said. Psychologists and psychiatrists, trained to provide cognitive behavioral therapy and motivational enhancement therapy to treat patients with alcohol-use disorder, can have a hard time admitting that the lay people who run AA groups do a better job of keeping people on the wagon. Early in his career, Humphreys said, he dismissed AA, thinking, “How dare these people do things that I have all these degrees to do?
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It also indicated that strenuous work, one alcoholic (recovered member) with another (newcomer), was vital to permanent recovery.” (Alcoholics Anonymous.
Whether your partner is also in recovery or not, the program is sure to touch your relationships. When Sarah C. While the grief and loss threatened to overwhelm them, Sarah said that their shared step traditions gave them the strength to survive. On the other hand, a person without a history of addiction might have less baggage, but also less understanding. For Sarah and William, who are now married and recently had another baby, the tenants of AA have formed the foundation on which their family is built.
Because of that, William and Sarah are able to focus on moving forward in their recovery together, without having to teach their significant other about the program.
Alcoholics Anonymous works for some people. A new study suggests the alternatives do too.
Alcoholics Anonymous AA is one of the most well-known treatment approaches to recovering from alcohol abuse. AA started in in Akron, Ohio. Bill Wilson and Bob Smith, both alcoholics themselves, were determined to help others quit drinking. In AA, members meet to help motivate and keep one another accountable for their alcohol use. The meetings are free and open to anyone who wants to stop drinking. Meetings vary but often include reading from The Big Book along with sharing stories, celebrating sobriety, and intense discussions about themes relating to drinking.
Informal evidence shows that alcoholics who choose to attend AA meetings do better than those who do not, and the longer they are involved in attending.
Abram Tuvov had been sober so long that Alcoholics Anonymous members in Palm Springs just assumed he was a good guy. One female AA member who was new in town felt comfortable enough to go on an afternoon bicycle ride with him, even stopping at his house for waffles. The November outing ended with Tuvov, 72, raping the woman so viciously that she played dead until it was over.
Victims, former officials and some members say the culture of the organization — unregulated and loosely organized — puts vulnerable alcoholics at risk to predatory leaders whose only credential is their longtime sobriety. And while many members are in Alcoholics Anonymous of their own volition, some criminal offenders are there as part of their court sentences. Tuvov was found guilty last year of rape, oral copulation by force, penetration with a foreign object and sexual battery.
Neither he nor his lawyer could be reached for comment. Leaders also warn that wrongdoers cannot hide behind the cloak of anonymity. Former directors and victims advocates insist the Alcoholics Anonymous General Service Board can do more to protect local members.
The Founders of Alcoholics Anonymous
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Coronavirus News. Tradition Anonymity is the spiritual foundation of all our traditions, ever reminding us to place principles before personalities. The spiritual.
The church will be closed tomorrow, and the drunks are freaking out. An elderly lady in a prim white blouse has just delivered the bad news, with deep apologies: A major blizzard is scheduled to wallop Manhattan tonight, and up to a foot of snow will cover the ground by dawn. The church, located on the Upper West Side, can’t ask its staff to risk a dangerous commute. Unfortunately, that means it must cancel the Alcoholics Anonymous meeting held daily in the basement.
A worried murmur ripples through the room. She’s in rough shape, having emerged from a multiday alcohol-and-cocaine bender that morning. A mustachioed man in skintight jeans stands and reads off the number for a hotline that provides up-to-the-minute meeting schedules. He assures his fellow alcoholics that some groups will still convene tomorrow despite the weather. Anyone who needs an AA fix will be able to get one, though it may require an icy trek across the city.
That won’t be a problem for a thickset man in a baggy beige sweat suit.
Glossary of AA Terms – Part 1 of 2
In a Zoom meeting of Alcoholics Anonymous last week, a waifish figure with rheumy eyes assumed the center of the computer screen. This was my first online experience of the fellowship that has been a cornerstone of my life since Like many A. But internet A. In my experience, A.
I developed a few passing crushes but never acted on them, dutifully sticking to the suggestion to avoid romantic relationships for the first year.
Alcoholics Anonymous AA is an international mutual aid fellowship  with the stated purpose of enabling its members to “stay sober and help other alcoholics achieve sobriety. Its only membership requirement is a desire to stop drinking. AA was founded in in Akron, Ohio when one alcoholic, Bill Wilson , talked to another alcoholic, Bob Smith , about the nature of alcoholism and a possible solution.
Its title became the name of the organization and is now usually referred to as “The Big Book”. The Traditions recommend that members remain anonymous in public media, altruistically help other alcoholics, and that AA groups avoid official affiliations with other organizations. They also advise against dogma and coercive hierarchies. Subsequent fellowships such as Narcotics Anonymous have adapted the Twelve Steps and the Twelve Traditions to their respective primary purposes.
AA membership has since spread internationally “across diverse cultures holding different beliefs and values”, including geopolitical areas resistant to grassroots movements. AA sprang from The Oxford Group , a non-denominational movement modeled after first-century Christianity. Feeling a “kinship of common suffering” and, though drunk, Wilson attended his first Group gathering.
Alcoholics Anonymous is a fellowship of men and women who share their experience, strength and hope with each other that they may solve their common problem and help others to recover from alcoholism. The only requirement for membership is a desire to stop drinking. There are no dues or fees for A. AA is not allied with any sect, denomination, politics, organisation or institution; does not wish to engage in any controversy; neither endorses nor opposes any causes.
Alcoholics Anonymous meetings have moved from musty church basements to laptop screens in quarantine. Do they still work?
On May 11, , Bill W. During a business trip to Ohio, he found himself standing in the lobby of a hotel, craving a drink. With growing anxiety he contemplated his options. Bill narrowed his choices to two: order a cocktail in the hotel bar or call another recovering alcoholic and ask for help in staying sober.
Bill knew that this choice came with high stakes. As an alcoholic who had nearly drunk himself to death, he’d endured four hospital stays for “detox. He was seized with “an ecstasy beyond description” and concluded that he was free from any need for alcohol. But there was no divine blaze in the lobby of the Mayflower Hotel in Akron — only the dim lights of the bar and the lure of a drink. Pacing through the lobby, Bill passed the bar and found a church directory.
Within minutes he was on the phone with a local minister. A series of calls put him in touch with an alcoholic surgeon named Dr.
‘I was fresh meat’: how AA meetings push some women into harmful dating
Paul J. Whelan, E. Jane Marshall, David M. Aims: The aim of this study was to explore the roles of Alcoholics Anonymous AA sponsors and to describe the characteristics of a sample of sponsors. Methods: Twenty-eight AA sponsors, recruited using a purposive sampling method, were administered an unstructured qualitative interview and standardized questionnaires.
You can be that man.” — Frank Buchman, Oxford Group Founder. An AA member explains the early history of AA in the video below.
We are not allied with any particular faith, sector, denomination nor do we oppose anyone. We simply wish to be helpful to those who are afflicted. Since that day all kinds of experiments with membership have been tried. The number of membership rules which have been made and mostly broken! Two or three years ago the Central Office asked the groups to list their membership rules and send them in. After they arrived we set them all down. They took a great many sheets of paper. A little reflection upon these many rules brought us to an astonishing conclusion.
If all of these edicts had been in force everywhere at once it would have been practically impossible for any alcoholic to have ever joined Alcoholics Anonymous. About nine-tenths of our oldest and best members could never have got by! In some cases we would have been too discouraged by the demands made upon us.