So I pulled out. Then people came out of the woodworks to ask me to stay. Oh, they didn't defend me out in the posts... except for the very brave like TJ... maybe a couple of others. But for the most part, these poor posters don't even post anymore themselves. They appreciated my trip up the steps and wanted me to bring them back.
So, I stepped back and just said... "WHAT???? Are you serious?" The powers that be didn't want any part of me over there. You want to see what I'm talking about? Well... I'll show you. This is the kind of A.A. bashing that goes on over there unabated;
"Protecting a person before they get harmed in recovery world is exactly what I'm trying to do. When 95% of people drop out of AA in their first year (AA's numbers), that shows that something is wrong.
I was a volunteer peer advocate with a program whose clientele were all dually diagnosed. They had all been through 12step treatment and AA/NA, most several times, all unsuccessfully. I now work in mental health primarily with those who have coexisting substance abuse issues. Together, over five years in the field.
I've run DRA, SOS, and harm reduction groups, each has had their success stories and their failures. All of them have had people who feel they had been harmed by AA/NA.
Besides the anti-medication factor and the 13th steppers which are obvious (and tolerated in the rooms), the philosophy of AA is damaging for many. The idea that addiction isn't the people's fault, that is a disease that they powerless over is seductive. People don't want to admit that their actions led to their addictions, that's the pull of 12step groups. Belief that they are powerless gives them an excuse for relapses.
When people in AA relapse, it is practically scripted that they go out on a full class binge. The Brandsma study showed that binging occurred five times as much with people in 12step treatment as those who received no treatment and nines times more that those who had received rational behavioral therapy.
AA is fear-based program, all the talk of "jails, institutions, and death" and the horror stories of how people who leave die are scare tactics not health coping skills. People, especially those with coexisting disorders, respond better to Motivational Interviewing/Motivational Enhancement than fear.
And some, like myself, could not accept the religious nature of the program. I have had several clients with religious delusions that were all too eager to accept AA religiosity and incorporate it with their own that ended up badly.
It's for these reasons I cannot, in good conscience, suggest AA as a treatment method.
Let's break down a list of claims from above;
- A.A. has a 5% recovery rate based on newcomer dropout after the first year.
- People with dual-diagnosis who claim they've been harmed in A.A./N.A.
- The support for and/or tolerance of denying the AAer from the use of medications
- The support for and/or tolerance of 13 stepping
- The idea that A.A. supports the "addiction" model and that A.A. falsely believes that some people called alcoholics were doomed to become alcoholics despite their actions, thus "powerless" over booze from the start AND that this results in the excuse that they are also "powerless" over any subsequent relapse. When people in A.A. go out in relapse, they purposely go on a tear and follow some premeditated script due to their "brainwashing" from A.A. indoctrination.
- A.A. is fear-based and those in the fellowship are threatened to stay or they will face "jails, institutions, or death."
- A.A. is a religious program and does not mix with the prospect's own prior convictions.
- A.A. cannot be, in good conscience, be recommended as a method of treatment.
That 5% recovery rate is an example of the bashing from those in the antiAA industry...aka those earning a buck on your plight that are "vehemently antiA.A. as opposed to those who were fundamental program followers and found it to be a 75% recovery rate. They claim the numbers come from within A.A. archives... as if A.A. would be able to measure such a stat.
"Of course, this doesn’t really tell the whole story, as many people will leave AA after being first introduced to it, and then later return once they have truly been beaten by their alcoholism. Most people who are a success story in AA tell of how they struggled–sometimes for years–going in and out of AA before they finally “got it.”"
My personal experience with the thing is this; I have always made it more than a year when I came into A.A. and did the A.A. program via the 12 Steps. So for me, the Program has a 300% success rate. You stupid antiA.A. fools. Get a new statistician and stop watching Penn & Teller Bullshit and passing it off as education.
Dual diagnosis; Don't know what to tell ya. Maybe you're right. In my A.A. group, we don't fool with dual-diagnosis. We send them elsewhere. People with dual-diagnosis tend to fall back on the other problem when the heat gets too great on the one. Either you're alcoholic or you're not. A.A. is for alcoholics. Period! No one else. Just alkies. I would question the "Professional" that made the dual-diagnosis in the first place and I would question the treatment center that tagged the client as an alcoholic/drug addict/ a drug is a drug is a drug bullshit. Either you're an alcoholic or you're not and it's up to you to diagnose yourself... according to A.A. A.A. gives the potential client the dignity to find that out for themselves.
My experience based on what I've seen; my oldest brother is a paranoid schizophrenic. He is not a drug addict and he is not an alcoholic. He does like to get high once in a while though. He does not go to A.A. nor does he go to N.A. Why? Because, for one thing, he is given the dignity to decide that for himself. Nobody forces him to go into A.A. or N.A. Oh, and he doesn't break the law too often. You break the law, and the state, county, or feds will decide you are not allowed to drink booze or do mind altering drugs anymore. Then of those, some are given the "opportunity" to try 12 Step to help with their subsequent abstinence. They are not "forced into A.A." They are merely given the choice; A.A. or Bubba. Would you like to see SMART, RR, LR, SOS, etc. get a crack at these fine folks? Yes? Well so would I. I'll get to work on that.
13 Stepping; Note to newcomers in A.A. ... keep your legs crossed. You have the right to not spread your legs. The steps stop after 12. We've tried to tell you to not date within the first year, to have women work only with women, to not shout, to not pout, to be a good boy. We have not yet been able to control the wrong-doings of others... and sometimes ourselves. But to say that 13 Stepping is tolerated or encouraged... that's just a flat out lie.
My experience, my group doesn't even currently have any women in it now. They come to our meeting from time to time and ask if it's a stag meeting. We say "No. You are welcome... so long as you are an alcoholic and want to do something about it." There's another meeting I go to where they have a lot of women, a lot of people who date within their own gender, etc. Why that is, IDK. I guess they feel safe there, but it's a good meeting that is focussed on the A.A. program via the 12 Steps. If I saw someone in the A.A. program going after someone who was new, female, vulnerable, etc., I'd get in their face about it and warn the other party about it as best I could. I've not seen this in a long time.
To say that A.A. corners the market in predatory behavior is a flat out lie and would like to see how the "Professional Community" fares on such matters. Naw, not really. I got better shit to do. Like being a husband to my wife and cleaning my own side of the street.
We in A.A. do believe we are powerless over alcohol physically and mentally... once we put it into our body we react physically different than the norm and once separated from booze, we react differently to the 1st drink than others. That's A.A.'s stance. A.A. did not come about as yet one of many successful solutions for the alcoholic. It came about as the only thing that would work. And A.A. is still here today because it's the only thing that works for real alcoholics. Alcoholism is not an addiction. The word "addiction" being linked to alcoholism came about in about 1991 when insurance co-pay got into the game. Alcoholics are not addicts, alcoholism is not a disease, and alcohol is not a drug; it is food. Let's get on the same page and talk the same language. Then maybe the success rates for alcoholics, drug addicts, etc. will increase.
Relapse is not part of the A.A. Program and it never was. That's treatment center bullshit and is also perpetuated by the thought that once you forget the pain, relapse begins. It's bullshit and it came from you doctors, psychiatrists, psychologists, counselors, therapists, etc. Own up to it and shut your holes about it.
The truth in the matter is that some alcoholics come to A.A. and are never shown the Program... aka the doing of the steps... and they go back out and drink again and what happens is usually sad. How dare you make fun of this tragic event and use it to bash A.A. you stupid punk. I'm a real fucking alcoholic and I've gone back out and drank again and it always gets worse. What's your experience with drinking booze?
A.A. is fear-based and the threat of going back out will result in "jails, institutions, and death?" That's complete bullshit too. At least it is in my Step-working group. If you want to go back out or leave A.A., you're welcome to it. But for some of those real alcoholics that did, the results is sometimes "jails, institutions, and death". Now that's the truth. And that may bother some of you. Some non alcoholics that got hustled into A.A. from treatment centers left A.A. and did fine.
A good A.A. group will help a potential client find out if they are alcoholic or not, and be invited to leave if they're not. Why? Because A.A. is a spiritual based program founded on the Truth and you cannot build a spiritual life based on a fundamental lie. If you're not an alcoholic and try to pass yourself off as one, you will get sick, not better. THAT'S WHY WE DON'T HUSTLE NON-ALCOHOLICS INTO A.A. FROM THE GET-GO. A.A. IS FOR JUST ALKIES.
As alcoholics get older, their livers, pancreas', and kidneys get older, not newer. So for that reason, if they go back out and drink again, it always gets worse, never better. Does this not make any sense to you in the medical field? It should. I know it for a fact because I've experienced it in my own life. Oh, but let's not dare call it a disease! That would offend those folks with real diseases!
A.A. is a religious program that does not mix with a prospect's existing convictions? Not my experience at all. In fact, let's talk about a prospects existing convictions? How well did God separate the prospect from booze prior to A.A.?
Not so good, huh? You want to know why? Two simple words... get ready for a theology lesson you dorks... Free Will!
This is why priests, rabbi's, ministers, other clergy come to A.A. to find that contact with their God so they can follow a "few simple rules" which will enable that God to remove the obsession to drink from them and enable them to find a life which is once again useful and whole. Oh, and it's where the doctor, psychiatrist, psychologist, therapist, counselor, etc. will go to dispell the myths of recovery and enable the real alcoholic that needs it to seek help.
Frankly, A.A. was given a lot of support from clergy and medical professionals and we started off as "friends". Then these "friends" got greedy and A.A. stayed consistent and the alcoholic hasn't changed a lick, nor has booze, nor has human nature... so if anything has skewed the recovery stats for A.A., I'd say it's been the greed of the Alcoholism Industry.