Everyone recovers differently. Some people find that a twelve-step fellowship is extremely beneficial in their recovery. Whether they attend the original twelve step fellowship, Alcoholics Anonymous, or they attend a “sister” fellowship which follows the anonymous or twelve step model, what they find there will be the same. They will find a format for every meeting, and a few different kinds of meetings which each have their own format. They will find a warm welcome by happy, smiling people; outstretched hands, offers to answer any questions, and a warm, compassionate approach. At twelve-step meetings, there is faith and hope to be found, a sincere belief in a solution for some of life’s most painful problems. Community, fellowship, service, information, and a willingness to recover can be found at any 12-step meeting.
The original twelve steps were created by Bill Wilson and Doctor Bob Smith when they founded Alcoholics Anonymous in the 1930s. Before there were twelve steps, there were six steps, created by a fellowship called the Oxford Group. The Oxford Group was already helping men and women at the time who were struggling with alcoholism. Alcoholism wasn’t coined alcoholism quite yet and doctors, as well as psychologists, did not know how to help people who seemed hopelessly attached to the drink. After much conversation and personal experience, Bill and Bob realized more steps were necessary to create a program for recovery. The twelve steps are interchangeably called a “program for living” and a “spiritual program” for people to abide by. Drawing from varying religions, science, doctor’s opinions, psychology, philosophy, and personal experience, Bill and Bob drafted Alcoholics Anonymous, affectionately regarded as “The Big Book”. Alcoholics Anonymous meetings, the book, and the steps, have inspired a long list of other twelve step communities to grow. Many see the twelve steps as a universal spiritual program for healing.
At a twelve step meeting you’ll find people who have been recovered for many years and people who have only been recovering for a few days, or even hours. You’ll hear people share their stories of experience in a way which encompasses a twelve step motto: What it was like, what happened, and what it is like now. Every now and then, you’ll catch a bit of drama, as people who come to “the rooms” are often struggling with their mental health.
You’ll find literature, including pamphlets, booklets, flyers, and actual books. Some twelve step fellowships have many books, others use “The Big Book” or have their own book, along with a workbook. You’ll find a phone list, which has the name and number of people in the fellowship you can call when you are in need.
Whenever you attend a twelve step meeting, you’ll find you feel like you’ve arrived home. You’ll always find a sense of safety and security, a sense of welcoming, and a sense of belonging.
You won’t find anything at a twelve step meeting if you don’t go. Try a meeting today. Try a few this week. You may be surprised by what you find.
Twelve step meetings can be a great asset to recovery. So can working with O’Connor Professional Group. Offering concierge behavioral health services, we help custom create a plan of treatment and recovery for you or a loved one. From treatment placement to case management and aftercare options, we help create a healing plan aligned with the needs of your life. For more information, call us today: 617.910.3940