Alcoholics Anonymous, the first 12 Step recovery fellowship, began after a meeting between Bill Wilson and Dr. Bob Smith in 1935. The basic text of Alcoholics Anonymous, known as the Big Book was first published in 1939 and explains the process of the 12 Steps. Since then, many other recovery fellowships have developed using Alcoholics Anonymous 12 Step program to focus on specific issues. The two most widely known 12 Step recovery programs are Alcoholics Anonymous and Narcotics Anonymous. Narcotics Anonymous was developed in 1953 as an alternative fellowship for men and women who suffered from drug addiction rather than alcoholism, and could benefit from the 12 Step program of recovery. It is important to note that many men and women who suffer from drug addiction still choose to attend Alcoholics Anonymous meetings in order to receive the original source material of 12 Step recovery from the Big Book. Cocaine Anonymous is a fellowship developed in 1982 for recovery from drug addiction, but used the Big Book of Alcoholics Anonymous as its basic text. Despite the name, Cocaine Anonymous is not a drug-specific fellowship. Cocaine Anonymous, in About C.A., explains, “The only requirement for membership is a desire to stop using cocaine and all other mind-altering substances. Anyone who wants to stop using cocaine and all other mind-altering substances (including alcohol and other drugs) is welcome.” In a sense, CA bridges the gap between Alcoholics Anonymous and Narcotics Anonymous by using the Big Book and A.A. structure to promote recovery from all mind and mood-altering substances. There are a multitude of various recovery programs that may or may not be substance specific, and any individual will be able to find one that fits their specific needs. There are even programs designed for loved ones of those who suffer from addiction and alcoholism, such as Al-Anon. Al-Anon applies the 12 Step program of recovery to help those affected by alcoholism, and “has but one purpose: to help families of alcoholics. We do this by practicing the Twelve Steps, by welcoming and giving comfort to families of alcoholics, and by giving understanding and encouragement to the alcoholic.” Early recovery is a time for exploration of what various fellowships have to offer. With so many out there, a person is bound to find one that fits their specific needs.
Your story doesn’t have to be one of desperation and suffering caused by addiction and alcoholism. You can find a better life by making the decision to seek help now. Oceanfront Recovery, a treatment center in beautiful Laguna Beach, offers a variety of treatment methodologies and techniques, including inside and outside 12 Step meetings, to give you all the tools necessary to achieve and maintain permanent sobriety. For more information, please call today: (877) 279-1777