Drug Addicts Anonymous Meetings: What’s the point? Why should I go?
Nearly a century ago, in 1935, we saw the first type of addiction support group begin: alcoholics anonymous, AA. It is the oldest, and most conspicuous of these support groups. 18 years after the founding of AA, Narcotics Anonymous came onto the scene. The point of NA was to include people addicted to drugs besides alcohol. Over time, we’ve seen these sorts of groups becoming more and more specialized so that today we have a great variety to choose from. Whatever form your addiction has taken, you’re likely to find people who can relate to you in drug addicts anonymous meetings.
Wherever you are on your journey to recovery, meeting with peers is always a good idea. Drug addicts anonymous meetings have helped thousands of people achieve and maintain recovery. Have you been considering joining one yourself? Would you like your partner, child, or friend to join? If so, you might find this article quite useful. We’ve put together some information on drug addicts anonymous meetings for you to make an informed decision.
Finding a peer support group has more benefits than you may have realized. According to the statistics, drug addicts anonymous meetings can help you in the following ways:
- 85% of Narcotics Anonymous (NA) members say the group made it possible to find peers to identify with.
- 92% of NA members reported that their family relationships improved.
- 81% of NA members said they returned to their hobbies and interests.
- Roughly 3/4 of NA members said that meetings helped them achieve stable work and housing.
- 56% achieved a higher level of education after participating in NA.
- 1/4 of NA members have been able to maintain sobriety for 20 years or more.
Options for Drug Addicts Anonymous Meetings
The original 12 Steps:
- We admitted we were powerless over alcohol – that our lives had become unmanageable.
- Came to believe that a Power greater than ourselves could restore us to sanity.
- Made a decision to turn our will and our lives over to the care of God as we understood Him.
- Made a searching and fearless moral inventory of ourselves.
- Admitted to God, to ourselves and to another human being the exact nature of our wrongs.
- Were entirely ready to have God remove all these defects of character.
- Humbly asked Him to remove our shortcomings.
- Made a list of all persons we had harmed and became willing to make amends to them all.
- Made direct amends to such people wherever possible, except when to do so would injure them or others.
- Continued to take personal inventory and when we were wrong promptly admitted it.
- Sought through prayer and meditation to improve our conscious contact with God as we understood Him, praying only for knowledge of His will for us and the power to carry that out.
- Having had a spiritual awakening as the result of these steps, we tried to carry this message to alcoholics and to practice these principles in all our affairs.
Although the language used in the original 12 steps is religious, modern programs do not require you to be religious to join. Diverse viewpoints, beyond the presumed Anglican Christian viewpoint, are welcome and encouraged today. Atheists, non-Christians, and spiritual people have all found a community in 12 step support groups.
Other popular 12 step options:
- CA: Cocaine Anonymous
- ACA: Adult Children of Alcoholics Anonymous
- CMA: Crystal Meth Anonymous
- Co-Anon, or Codependents Anonymous: a group for the co-dependents of addicts
- Heroin Anonymous
- Marijuana Anonymous
- NicA: Nicotine Anonymous
- PA: Pills Anonymous, for those addicted to prescription medications
You can search online for when and where these groups meet in your area. Searching nearby may help you find other new groups that are just starting.
Who Will Be In A Drug Addicts Anonymous Meeting?
The thought of your first meeting might be a little scary, understandably. It may help dispel your concerns to know who you can expect to see at meetings. Based on a large survey Narcotics Anonymous conducted in 2015, we know the general makeup of people who attend drug addict support groups:
- About 40% of attendees are women, and 60% are men.
- Most attendees are over the age of 40. 1% are under 21 years old, 11% are in their twenties, 21% are in their thirties, 24% are in their forties, 29% are in their fifties, and 14% are 60 or above.
- 74% are white, 11% are African American, 6% are Hispanic, 4% are mixed race, and 3% are Asian.
What are sponsors and sponsee?
One of the most important benefits that an addiction support group can uniquely offer, is the sponsor-sponsee relationship. This is a supportive relationship between two individuals that are both on the path to recovery. Both sponsor and sponsee hold each other accountable, support each other, and offer each other companionship.
According to Narcotics Anonymous: A sponsor’s role is not that of a legal adviser, a banker, a parent, a marriage counselor, or a social worker. Nor is a sponsor a therapist offering some sort of professional advice. A sponsor is simply another addict in recovery who is willing to share his or her experience, strength, and hope in the journey through the Twelve Steps.
Reclaim Your Life From Substance Use Disorders
Substance use disorders are serious conditions that can cause major health, social, and economic problems that should not be taken lightly. We Level Up California can provide to you, or someone you love, the tools to recover from addiction with professional and safe treatment. Feel free to call us to speak with one of our counselors. Our specialists know what you are going through. Please know that each call is private and confidential.