The Brief History Of Al-Anon
Al-Anon is support groups all over the world that where people affected by alcoholism in one way or another meet to share experiences and help each other. The aim of these groups is to be recuperative and curative.
Many alcoholics have overcome this condition thanks to the help they get from Al-Anon which is a support group that started in 1951. Lois Wilson, well-known simply as Lois W, whose husband launched Alcoholics Anonymous (AA), laid the foundation of Al-Anon organization 16 years after AA was established. Dealing with the difficulties of providing support to a recovering alcoholic during her life, she decided to create an organization for people similar to her. Al-Anon is an organization self-supported through member donations. The meetings aim to help members cope with and know how to support and help their loved ones fighting alcoholism.
To assist members by having them understand they aren't alone in their struggle, is the principal target of Al-Anon.
Alcoholism Being A Family Illness
Al-Anon considers the problem of alcoholism as a family illness because of the negative impact it has both on the alcoholic and the people surrounding them. A clear-cut system of friends and family members support is an integral part of recovery from alcoholism.
Many family members are known to blame themselves for the drinking problem of their loved one, and in many cases do not understand why the recovery of their loved one is a priority. During the Al-Anon gathering, people are educated about taking alcoholism not as a one person problem but as a joint issue in the family.
Alateen- Al-Anon Meetings Intended For Teenagers
A particular group called Alateen assists young people impacted by alcoholism in their family is also run by Al-Anon.
Young people are permitted to meet with others of their own age at these meetings, making the experiences more similar and advantageous.
Reasons To Partake In An Al-Anon Group
Members benefit from Al-Anon because they are introduced to many people and families who suffer from alcoholism. People are different, although, Al-Anon members have all had similar experiences with their struggles. Al-Anon provides a key benefit and that is to help people finding others who have had similar experiences to talk about. These meetings are widespread all over the country. Call us on 0800 246 1509 to help you find one near you.
What Happens During The Meetings
For anyone who is affected by someone else's drinking, Al- Anon meetings are for those. If you are worried about somebody's heavy drinking or if the drunkard's lifestyle somehow affects your life , Al-Anon will help you.
The outcomes of these meetings is what scares some people from coming. What you must remember when you attend an Al-Anon meeting:
- Al-Anon is a group that is unidentified
- Whether personally or through a family member, everyone in each meeting has been impacted by alcoholism
- You are not forced to talk or discuss your issues though it is encouraged
- Different Types Of Meetings Are Held For Everyone
- There are meetings where you may not be helped but someone else might be.
- There is no religious base for Al-Anon
- These meetings are focused on the 12 Step program by Al-Anon
The Al-Anon meetings work on the "take what you like and leave the rest" philosophy The shared stories, of experiences, hardships, and victories encourages members to know how to handle their experiences.
Al-Anon And The Twelve Steps
Usually, meetings start with someone reading from the 12 step program. These twelve steps are an abridged, almost verbatim, quote from the same-name program of Alcoholics Anonymous. Similarly to AA, Al-Anon members rely on a facilitator who guides them through the steps and who is always ready to support when the going gets tough. These stages are:
- We admitted we were powerless over alcohol that our lives had become unmanageable.
- Members can learn to accept alcoholism as a disease which they cannot control in others.
- Came to believe that a power greater than ourselves could restore us to sanity.
- members also learn they are driving themselves crazy by trying to change or control another person.
- The members then recognise the fact that there is a solution out there for them.
- Made a resolution to turn our lives and our will over to the care of God in a way we perceived Him.
- Learning how to forgive is an extremely important step of the program, together with acceptance.
- Made a searching and fearless moral inventory of ourselves.
- Self-discovery plays a huge role in making the steps; and this is its beginning.
- Attendees have the option of creating a list of how they could have wronged themselves or their loved ones with examples like threats issued, Etc.
- Admitted to God, to ourselves, and to another human being the exact nature of our wrongs.
- Then follows going through the list one item at a time and dealing with each.
- We are entirely prepared to have god remove all these defects of character.
- This step allows the member to off-load his recovery to someone greater and bigger than themselves to handle.
- Humbly asked Him to remove our shortcomings.
- This part of the 12 steps provides members with the assistance needed to understand how they may have been exercising control or being judgmental towards an addict and how these actions are counterproductive.
- Drew up a list of all people we had harmed, and became willing to right a wrong for them all.
- Most often making amends begins with yourself.
- Lots of people tend to blame themselves for addiction of their significant others.
- These people had better be willing to forgive and make amends to themselves.
- Made amends to such people directly where feasible, except for the cases when doing so is likely to hurt them or others.
- After you are willing to make amends, the following step is to act on it.
- Went on making personal inventory and each time we were wrong, we admitted it at once.
- It takes some period before you can complete the stages.
- There is also a possibility for relapse when trying to recover in the program.
- Step 10 provides a recognition that this is an ongoing process.
- Through prayer and meditation endeavoured to improve our conscious contact with God as we perceived Him, praying only for learning His will for us and the strength to do it.
- This is taking personal spiritual responsibility and surrender so as to start healing.
- Having experienced a spiritual awakening thanks to these steps, we tried to spread the word to other people, and to always practice these principles.
- The last step is a realization that the members journey has not finished.
- Encouragement is provided to members to support other members with their education.
What Is Higher Power
Although Al-Anon's program is not a religious one, members do experience insights into higher power. However, the notion of "higher power" can be interpreted depending on one's personal beliefs. Members of all religions and beliefs are accepted at Al-Anon and none is coerced to change their beliefs.