Sorry some people are going to be pissed by this, but Al-Anon and the other twelve-step programs based on Alcoholics Anonymous are a cult.
Yes, I am aware that a lot of people have experienced positive changes while involved in the twelve-step programs. Others have experienced negative changes while involved in the twelve-step programs.
I suggest that someone impacted by a family member’s alcohol or drug addiction consider doing one or both of these, instead:
- If you want something scientific and evidence-based, look into something like this:
“HARM LESS is a secular support group for people who have been negatively impacted by the alcohol or drug use of a loved one. No 12 steps, no Higher …”
- If you want to get involved in a support group that is spiritually-based: look into something based on Christian principles; or at least the principles of some other specific religion you believe in. I would suggest avoidance of these nebulous, non-specific-Higher-Power-as-you-understand-it twelve-step spiritual support groups.
Pray, and ask God for help, surely. But I would recommend doing that in some context other than the 12-step programs.[/quote]
Ok, as someone who has worked at an in-patient drug and alcohol rehab, this is B.S.
Ok: as someone with a family member who went through rehab; went through the twelve steps; got off drugs; became a sponsor of other participants; but also became a grandiose con-man who went to prison at least twice afterwards – could you please provide one of the following, A or B or C:
A) Peer-reviewed scientific study showing the twelve-step programs are more effective than other methods.
B) Serious comparison of twelve steps & “Big Book” vs. Catholic doctrine, demonstrating how the twelve steps & “Big Book” put the latter into practice.
C) Serious comparison of twelve steps & “Big Book” vs. the Bible, demonstrating how the twelve steps & “Big Book” put the latter into practice.
In other words: either show compatibility between the twelve steps & “Big Book” and scientific evidence; or else show compatibility between the twelve steps & “Big Book” and Revealed Truth. At least one or the other.
You’re missing the point of the whole cult / nebulousness thing.
People turn themselves over to a made-up Higher Power; with a pretense of no dogma but in fact a different set of cleverly-presented dogmas.
Some of them manage to stay sober or attain more sanity in their dealings with an addict or a drunk. Understandably, they credit their involvement with the group for their improvement in this area.
The success rate for the immediately preceding is no better than for people not involved in the twelve-step programs.
But meanwhile the cleverly-presented dogmas and the ways they are intrepreted under the guidance of the senior members of the group sometimes lead to bad changes in the attitudes and characters of participants (in areas other than drinking, drugging, or getting dragged down by others who do the former).
There is more than one way to encourage people to check their egos at the door.
Al-Anon does not apply the steps, the sponsorship, and the personal transformations to the addict, but rather to the addict’s family member or friend. Admittedly: being tied up in egos, defense mechanisms, and inflated false sense of worth applies to the addict’s family member or friend as well. In fact, it applies to almost everybody to some extent. And these things all constitute a clever pretext to steer people towards a cult, whether intentionally or (almost always) unknowingly.
As for the OP, I’m not saying you should not look into advances in neurology or pharmacology, but I hope you aren’t taking advice from an organization that is running its website on yahoo groups. Second Al-Anon as something to look into.
No one is ever hopeless. I’ve met a ton of people who were people in and out of rehab for years before they finally got cleaned up for the long term. Who’s to say if they will ever relapse again but they have had long stints of sobriety after many failed attempts. Just because your sister has had 2 failed stints at rehab does not mean that she cannot benefit from another trip. If she does go to rehab, I would recommend trying to find one which has a family program and attending that if you can.[/quote]