Are you living with an alcoholic? Are you trying to get your alcoholic husband or alcoholic wife to go to Alcoholic Anonymous meetings and your spouse says they hate AA and won’t go? What are the most common complaints that I hear from my patients tbeing treated for an alcohol problem?
AA is too religious. A number of people will complain if it is held in a Church.
The stories people share about what they have gone through can seem really extreme and can be frightening.
Your alcoholic spouse doesn’t feel like he fits in.
Your alcoholic wife doesn’t feel comfortable talking about her problems in a group where men are present.
Your alcoholic husband claims his problem is not as serious as the other people who attend.
The people at Alcoholic Anonymous meetings are now addicted to AA instead of alcohol.
Your alcoholic spouse is still in denial about their alcohol problem and thinks AA is a waste of time.
Most of my patients with an alcohol problem do not like their first few AA meetings. Some even hate it. AA meetings are not for everyone. However, the people engaged in 12 step programs who then sponsor other people are the ones I see who succeed in recovery. As a psychiatrist that specializes in addiction, I am really impressed with 12 step meetings. Most patients I treat get over their initial negative reaction after the first couple of weeks. For those who are turned off by the religious/spiritutual aspect, Rational Recovery is a good alternative.
There is not one simple answer to be successful in recovery.
AA isn’t enough, family support isn’t enough, medications to treat underlying depression or anxiety aren’t enough, residential treatment centers aren’t enough. No magic bullet exists. The people who succeed in their alcoholic recovery have a combination of all these things. That is the key.
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