Friday, November 26, 2004

Why I Hate Alcoholics Anonymous

A Note:
Though based on an actual event, names (except mine, of course) and locations have been changed.

The language is also a bit more vitriolic than my actual feelings since I originally wrote this essay for an evening of spoken word performance and went a bit more over the top than my usual tone.

My point, however, remains. I don't like AA all that much.

And though it might take me awhile to approve comments, I approve and read each one which isn't spam, so whether you agree with me or disagree and insult me, each one will be approved in time.

So please comment.



Hi, my name is Ben, and I’m not an alcoholic.

But I've never wanted a drink more in my life than when I went to an Alcoholics Anonymous meeting.

My cousin Jay regularly attends AA meetings. I was told, on the day I agreed to accompany him to one of the meetings, that he hasn't had a drink in over nine years, so I thought, well, why is he going to AA if he hasn't had a drink in so long? Sounds like he's kicked it.

I started wondering what the statute of limitations was for alcoholism. Jay's been dry nine years and still considers himself an alcoholic. Can't you finally doff the moniker "alcoholic" if you've been sober ten years? Twenty?


If you've stopped smoking, you don't still consider yourself a smoker. You're an ex-smoker.

I've yet to hear anyone describe themselves as an ex-alcoholic. They're all "recovering alcoholics".

Once an alcoholic, always an alcoholic. Sounds like a raw deal to me, a scarlet AA burned into your liver for eternity.

The only reason I accepted the invitation was because so far my trip had been rather tame, filled with accompanying my nephews to the local swimming pool each day, sitting through impromptu living room talent shows, and getting to know the family dog rather well.

We arrived at the Charlottesville Community Center thirty minutes into the hour-long meeting. Before joining, Jay and I detoured into the coffee room to juice up. A large man cradling a styrofoam cup stood reading a bulletin board.

"Stan!" exclaimed Jay, giving him a hug. He motioned to me and continued: "I want you to meet my cousin Ben. This is his first visit to AA."

I shook Stan's hand while Jay ran off to use the restroom. "Nice to meet you," I said.

"Welcome," he said. "So, this is your first time, huh?"

"Yup," I said, making my way to the coffee machine.

"Well, we're glad you're here. You'll find that you've got help here whenever you need it."

I didn't try to correct his assessment of me, as denying I was an alcoholic would firmly cement in his head my reason for being there. Admittance is, after all, the first step. So I just smiled politely and pulled a cup from the shelves.

"Is the coffee any good?" I asked.

Jay rejoined us and said, "Stan's my sponsor. Been trying to get him to be my sponsor for a long time, and he finally said yes."

"I said yes just so you'd leave me alone," Stan chuckled. Jay laughed at this, an inside joke apparently.

"Yeah, Ben here's a normie," Jay said.

"Is that so?" Stan asked. "You sure he's related?"

The three of us shared a quiet laugh, then made our way into the meeting room, where Arlene was talking about how her faith in God keeps her sober.

We took a seat in the back, well away from the single table lamp illuminating the room, and listened to the various stories.

"Hi, my name's Brad, and I'm an alcoholic."

"Hi Brad."

They actually say that. Brad went on to tell us how he's been sober for five years, which elicited supportive applause from the group. He apparently found the drink in college, and realized he was an alcoholic when he woke up one afternoon in a puddle of vomit in the front yard.

I thought hell, I've done that before.

Brad and Arlene's stories were your basic stories of "this is how I became an alcoholic, this is how I realized I'm an alcoholic, and this is how I keep from drinking," and I wondered if they tell these same tales each week.

Seems like that would make for some tedious meetings. The same people telling the same stories over and over. Like visiting Grandpa in the old folks home except with less urine smells. You just smile and nod and feign interest in the story though what you really want to do is scream "we've heard this one before, we get it already, Jesus Christ!"

A few more people related their stories of woe and hope, strength and faith. Each one unique, each one exactly the same.

At the end of the hour, it was time to call this meeting adjourned. After an induction of two new members, everybody stood up, grabbed each other's hands, and arranged as much a circle as they could in this dark, L-shaped room crowded with desks and chairs.

I sat back in mine, outside of the circle, and listened to the group prayer which was topped off by what appeared to be the AA vision statement in rhyme. Something about trusting in Jesus to help the drunks get through life one day at a time, yadda yadda yadda.

I thanked Jesus myself for not letting anybody notice I wasn't participating, and afterwards gleefully watched as everyone scrambled to the front porch for a cigarette, chuckling as I imagined the Smokers Anonymous members throwing back a few pints after each one of their meetings.

Once an alcoholic, always an alcoholic. Talk about having no hope at all for recovery. It frightened me to think of all the bad habits I've had over the years, and how someone might still be able to identify me as that habit today even though I've kicked it completely.

Hi, my name is Ben and I torture insects.
Hi, my name is Ben and I pick my nose.
Hi, my name is Ben and I don't wash my hands after using the bathroom.

You see what I mean? I don't need this following me around. I don't want to be standing at the altar and have a priest say "Do you Ben, insect torturer, take you Kerri, passive aggressive ice queen, to be your lawfully wedded wife?"

But this is what Alcoholics Anonymous is doing. They're supporting an ideology and culture which states that even though you've been sober for over twenty years, you're still a fucking drunk. What sort of fucked up co-dependency is that?

I say if you haven't had a drink in a year, you're no longer an alcoholic. Forget about it and get on with your life. The only person worse than a drunk is someone who thinks it's by the grace of God they don't get shit faced each night. We understand you used to have a problem, Brad, but get out of the bar, you're bringing everybody down!

You don't want to drink anymore? Go see a movie, read a book, or better yet, don't go to these meetings every week where you're constantly reminded about how fucked up and awful your life used to be. Leave that to your family, they're quite good at that.

Goddammit I need a drink.


  1. great blog. good writing. will subscribe. :)

    1. only requirement is the desire to stop drinking to be a member...guess your not a member..if you don't want what we have do not worry you will not get it

      ...guess your not a member

    2. How about I may have a desire to drink but choose to use my own common sense because my drinking too much was becoming a problem in my life so I decided to stop because it wasn't fun anymore. ..end of story...rehabs don't need to bill my insurance thousands of dollars...then 28 days later hand me bill Wilson pamplets

  2. i wouldn't call them cult nazi bastards. i'd call them cult christian bastards.

    and i do think they provide a good a point.

    help people sober up and get their life back together. help them get back on track to live a healthier, more financially stable existence.

    but don't be the monkey on their back screaming into their ear that they're still a lousy drunk and without God's help they'll become again what they once were.

    1. taking some inventory there anon ?? lmfao

  3. right on!!! get over the bullshit. they go on & on & on .... get on w ur life .... i agree totally. thanks for agreeing and not walking around the world in an aa daze..worse than lsd!!

    1. and dont ever let them fool you, 2per cent of people actually stay in aa...FACT.


    3. worked for me... Your style is brilliant tho. I appreciate your perspective--made me smile.

  4. Thank you!
    Finally someone who can see through that crap.

  5. I'll tell you exactly why they keep going. When they were "newcomers," they were told they don't know anything. Then when they get an atta-boy after a year, they get to feel as they know something. So now they have their chance at hazing the "newcomers." Its a sick society of people that only want to stop drinking and find new malbehaviors so they can continue to call themselves sick. Futhermore, the longer you stay in, the more institutionalized you become... there's a direct tie to the courts and hospitals that commit people to A.A.. Get that, being sentenced to A.A..

  6. I wanted to elaborate on the concept of institutionalisation:

    Quoted from Wikipedia...
    "The term institutionalisation is therefore sometimes used as a term to describe both the treatment of, and damage caused to, vulnerable human beings by the oppressive or corrupt application of inflexible systems of social, medical, or legal controls by publicly owned, private or not-for-profit organisations or to describe the process of becoming accustomed to life in an institution so that it is difficult to resume normal life after leaving."

    After reading this, its obvious why they "keep coming back." Its sad actually that people are so weak they have to spend precious life resources to keep themselves from being free.

  7. To previous post -

    Drunks are so weak, have no will power, cannot live free? Yes, they are almost at the turning point through being intoxicated so much they program themselves to believe they are shit and deserve to die but are unable to die through suicide but rather a slow death of ridicule, lost families, foreclosed homes, fired at good jobs, loss of drivers license, being in jail/prison for multitudes of reasons, hospitals take them in then kick them out with outrageous medical bills for 24hrs (2500.00 or more for 12 hour stay without insurance), and to top it off ultimately the alcoholic goes back to what they know, drinking, the numbness from the pain of their mistakes and disease.

    I am a sober 38yr old alcoholic that goes to meetings daily to beleive that there is more to life than a job, validated self identity through the small amount of people most of us know or we live or work with and talk to on a daily basis. Yes, these things are essential to healthy living for most of us in a civilized world but we forget about the most important value that makes each and everyone of us valued.

    Faith in God.

    I found God open arms and loving in the rooms of AA through the suffering people there that have been in hell and we promote opening the gates from it. Unlike the rigorous visits to church weekly while growing up to instill the fear of the wrath of god during the 70's and early 80's for our sins.
    I am spiritual today yet do not belong to any religous sect, denomination, or institution. This spirituality (in AA twelve steps) is referred to a "higher power". Mine is God today.

    I have been given a second life, one to live absolutely different than the one I was living that is now positive, hopeful, and actually prosperous in every way.

    I may not be able to drink another drop of alcohol, but there are people that cannot eat shellfish, strawberries, milk, etc.. It's called an allergy.
    I have been blessed from mine through humility to understand and benefit from it.

    I enjoy helping others with my same allergy and have AA friends that are there for me and I called family.

    Hamilton, OH

    1. well i have an allergy to god and higher powers and other people but i have to go so I don't go to jail fruckckkk

    2. AA is a cult. God doesn't exist. just glad I'm productive and able to help others! That was a pipe dream before

  8. Hi, my name's Heather and I'm a nice person. I used to smoke crack and steal shit from Wal Mart. Why the hell would I want to tell ANYONE that? I wouldn't. And I don't. They say insanity is doing the same thing over and over. I got tired of going to meetings with some seriously fucked up people. You can see some people are pissed off at the world. Why would i want to hang around people like that? That's why I moved 2000 miles from my mother. I have always wondered how AA's can call themselves "sober" while they're guzzling coffee and smoking cigarettes. Didn't they get the memo that smoking can kill you just as dead as drinking and driving? Hello? Bueller?

    So, I've quit AA. I've tried it 300times after 299 relapses. Finally, I realized, "Hey, I've got complete control over what I put in my hand and lift to my mouth." I'd hardly call that powerless.

    1. I have met a lot of people who went to AA and said it did not work for them. After reading some things here it is obvoius tha those people did not WANT it to work,and that is why they failed.
      There is no such thing as relapse. In order to relapse from comething you have to be cure first. You just were not done abusing yourself yet.
      If it was a matter only of will power,which everyone has,nobody would engage in compulsive or stupid behavior. AA is not for people who NEED it,it is for people who want it. Don't like it,try something else and I wish you well. I don't care how someone gets sober,as long as they do.Finally there are a lot of AA haters who work for one of those fancy,country club rehabs who cater to spoinle brats. They hate AA because AA does for free what they charge $30,000 for a 28 day stay to do.

    2. The owners and operators of "Serenity" sober living in NYC, which charges tens of thousands of dollars per month for clients to stay at their sober living facilities, are long time members of the Atlantic Group AA meeting in NYC. Get your facts straight. A lot of those sober living facilities are started by sober people in the rooms.

      I do agree with your other point: those organizations are providing 'snake oil' for an outrageous price and are exploiting vulnerable people.

      Last note: people want to stay sober. They might not want AA, and for good reason. You shouldn't need to want AA in order to stay sober. I agree with you in the sense that if you don't want AA, then get out. That's exactly what I did. All the same, alternatives need to be publicized and developed. AA is bullshit, and it doesn't work for the overwhelming majority of people who come into the rooms. I think society can offer a better solution.

  9. alCULTholics anonymous is an addiction itself. i'd rather drink every day than attend daily meetings where i relive the most pathetic points of my life.

    1. I thought that nothing could kill brains cells like alcohol, until I tried AA.

    2. Why sympathize and try to understand the many stupids in a public setting. To some who pigeon-hole themselves into continued recovery, it's a unhealthy social life of misfits, who constantly complain of their lives and others around them. Better off talking one-on-one with a social worker instead, if that can help in proper communication of thought and spirit for your future endeavors.

  10. I was in denial too...until I figured out why AA works....maybe you all need a meeting! I noticed that quite a few of you used"Anonymous" to voice your points....interesting.

    1. Explain to me then, Why does AA work???????

  11. Phillip Roth said it the best, "When are those AA folks gonna realize its more about what didn't happen than what did."

    Study Doctor Bob and Bill W., classic wankers. American charlatans, wife beaters, etc.

    Too bad Bill W. didn't jump off the Chrysler building in 29'...we may have been saved so much misery.

  12. Great article. I really enjoyed it after googling "I hate alcoholics anonymous." Usually I take a very live-and-let live attitude towards things, but not with AA. I love seeing them made fun of - does that make me a bad person?

    Many people benefit from a more rational approach to alcohol abuse or dependence. AA is a bit extreme for most people, especially those who struggle with alcohol but have not let it completely destroy their lives. Use your own strength and will in recovery, these are IMHO your most powerful tools. AA teaches you to replace them with meetings. Ick.

    Read Anne Fletcher for an unbiased description of some other approaches.

    I sure hope this post pisses off some AA's. Petty? Maybe. I don't deny it. Maybe they will even feel sorry for me being in such deep "denial." Well, I suppose that is only fair. I feel sorry for them for being f*****g idiots.

  13. Ben, you're missing the point.... People don't go to Alcoholics Anonymous to punish themselves, but to get on with their lives and help others do the same. We do this by helping others alcoholics. This does two things for the alcoholic. 1) It helps relieve the guilt and shame from the actions we took while we were drinking, and 2) It helps us get to the bottom of our character defects which lead to our mental obsession of believing time after time that we can safely drink again.

    I don't want to recite everything from the big book - you can read that yourself if interested - but I will close by saying that it IS medically proven fact that alcoholism is an allergy type condition, and it is never cured. It is only treated by abstaining from alcohol completely. That is why someone who has been sober for 20 years can pick up a drink, and it will be as if they never stopped drinking for the prior 20 in terms of their tolerance and the impact on their bodies, and - in many cases - their lives.

    1. Alcoholism ISN'T an allergy. Silkworth's BS opinion is LAUGHED at these days by MDs, including myself. Allergic reaction is caused by excess histamine release, which drinking doesn't cause. No one with a TRUE allergy seeks out an allergen. You're just repeating bullshit out of the Big Book, which is just the screeds of a compulsively lying stock swindler and a child abuser. It's filled with lies because Bill was a compulsive liar. He wasn't even a stock broker. He was a pump and dump specialist who lived off of scraps given to him by the folks who were creating the phony stocks. Don't believe me? Look for his brokers' license. I'll wait, but not too long because it doesn't exist.

  14. By the way, I agree that agree that AA is not for everyone, but you don't need to call the millions of people this program helps every year F**ing idiots. If you are so lost that you spend your time looking for anti-AA ranting - I'm not sure any program could help you.

    Thanks for reading.:)

  15. I gotta tell you that even as an "alcoholic" who has been sober for 10 years I find this article comforting. I have to catagorize most of my home group meetings as "Time I'll never get back". When I consider how I felt before AA, the fear of returning there is enogh to accept it as a solution until I find something better. The only thing better at this point that I can see would not be acceptable to my family. If Svend Robinson could advocate for alcoholics the same way he advocated for Lou Gherigs victims, we might have the better solution.

  16. This is completely deranged.

    Have you ever personally known an alcoholic, and sat there and had to watch them?

    You, your logic, and your writing all suck.

    Why don't you read a book and learn something.

    1. Believing in a mythical entity known as "God" is what's deranged.

      And yes, I know an alcoholic. I live with one who spends all our money on cigs and booze instead of paying bills, and as yet, he won't accept that he has a problem. When/if he does decide to seek help, it won't be from some god-bothering arseholes living with their heads in the clouds.

      There are other forms of therapy. Ones that don't include sitting around in a circle telling all and sundry your life story whilst they make appropriate noises, and that most certainly do NOT demand that you believe in anyone/thing but yourself in order to get help.

    2. Is a tornado stronger than you or a volcano, do you have power over them. I think not. So instead of calling it mother nature or something we make it easy and say God. I was in NA for 18 months and had a swig of wine and I was told to start all over again. Bull Shit

  17. I have a real problem with the program as well. I agree that it is crazy to sit in a smoke filled room with a shit load of coffee chugging whining people. I mean really come on if you are trying to save the lives of other alcoholics. Why don't you go out to where they are and reach out to them.

    It is sad that our courts are even buying into the ridiculousness of A. A. I am still trying to get my California drivers license because of a DUI from 2003 in Michigan. The Nazi pricks at the Secretary of State insist that I go to A.A. They want signatures of "anonymous" people to insure that I am not drinking. Well guess what I don't like the energy in those rooms. So because I am being true to myself I talked to a lawyer to represent me. Guess what he told me. Don't bother trying to get him to go to the hearing to reinstate my license. Without at least 3 months of signatures.

    I hate that I am now without a license until I surrender to the nAAzis.

  18. I'm pretty sure most of you folks have totally missed the point, even if you have been to some meetings.

    The goal of AA is not to go to 1000 meetings a week - It is to get on with your life.

    That's the beauty of AA - take it or leave it. When I first got sober I went to TONS of meetings -one a day, Minimum. I was not able to not drink without them. Since then - thanks to working the 12 Steps with a Sponsor - things have changed a bit. I've graduated from college, have a professional career, a wife, a daughter, and more friends than I have time to spend time with.

    I have found much happiness, and many good times with the friends I've made in Alcoholics Anonymous.

    I attend three meetings a week. One a men's stag group I've been attending every Monday night when possible since 1996. Wednesday I go to a 'quickie' 1/2 hour speaker meeting over the lunch hour, and Thursday night I go share my experience with the clients at a low-bottom treatment center.

    So - anybody got something to say about that? I spend time with my friends a couple times a week, and try to help new people find the happiness and peace that I was Freely Given.

    If you can find a problem with that, I feel sorry for you.

    Steve U.
    Lincoln, NE

  19. While you all have many opinions on AA, AA has no opinions on you. That makes it a pretty easy target. Patience and tolerance is our code; love and service is our practice. I've been C&S in AA since '93 and am happy and content with my life. What's wrong with that?

  20. AA might help the people that go to meetings and work the program. But at what expense? They teach each other to lie to their families so they won't "hurt" them, they cover each other's backs and think they're so much better than "normal people".

    Just because I don't want to have more than ONE drink every once in a while, and I've never done any drugs, doesn't mean that I'm inferior and have "no life experience".

  21. Man.
    Any post with AA speak in it to the exclusion of normal English really just proves the point. It's brainwashing, mindless repetition of platitudes by people so lost they are clinging onto their new addiction for all their worth.
    I've lived with an AAer doing 3,4 meetings a week. It was an avoidance method, just like getting smashed 3,4 nights a week, but instead of feeling like an ass the next day, they are bolstered by their AA friend's opinion that they are putting themselves first and that's ok.
    Since my other half stopped all the meetings they are human. Not drinking, not selfish, and someone who is actually able to have an adult relationship.
    The AA friends? Still smoking themselves to death, still self-righteous and still exactly where they were, in crap relationships full of avoidance and lies and secrecy.
    I know that AA helps a lot of desparate people, but come on, 5 years no booze - you're sorted, get a life and be normal.
    Or maybe after a year no smokes I'm still a smoker.


  22. My wife is sixty days clean from prescription pain meds, and she's regularly attending NA meetings. She's already ready for a lifetime commitment to the program, and it's driving me nuts. The brainwashing there is fantastic, the repetition, the rituals, all of it. Even the "sponsor" whose specific job it is to indoctrinate you to the program. I would like to leave all of this behind someday, and that is absolutely not what the program is for. It's already well established that I can't criticize the program, as it has already been ingrained in her that NA is recoverery. (Narcotics Anonymous, that is.) I don't know what to do about it, but I wish there were something.

  23. WOW! I googled I hate AA and I got so many laughs! I have just joined AA and I am about 100 days clean.
    I have moved back home and I am no longer attending the meetings.
    It is good to be sober and I know the meetings helped. However I don't want to spend the rest of my life in meetings either!
    I have had fun in the meetings and made some good friends, but I have also made some messed up friends who have stabbed me in the back.
    It is crazy, where ever you go, you will find the same types of people.
    The AAs and NAs are no better or worse than any other group.
    There is good and evil in this world, in whatever group you belong.
    I laughed out loud at this post!
    I loved it!
    I can laugh today because I am not messed up!

    1. I total ageed with you, good for you

  24. AA is another pathetic codependent way for these people to avoid real relationships and real life. They truly believe no one can understand them unless they're as screwed up as they are. It's funny how the self-centered addict cant find the time of day for the people around them, who want to love them, but then can go to a meeting every single day. They are self-centered crybabies and the universe has to revolve around them.

  25. I've read most of these comments and had a good laugh, but I also feel sad about what AA has become. To someone who has never been to AA or needed to go it seems silly and it's become so commercialized, unfortunately. I know that these days people are told to go to meetings so a lot of people just go to meetings and more meetings which doesn't really do anybody any good. The founders of AA never intended to send the message that meetings keep people sober. It doesn't matter how many meetings somebody goes to it won't make a difference on keeping them sober. In fact the AA Big Book even says "none of us makes a sole vocation of this work, nor do we think it's effectiveness would be increased if we did." There's also another part in the book which says "Aside from fellowship and sociability, the prime object was to provide a time and place where new people might bring their problems." In AA's inception, they had a time and place where they would meet once a week to introduce the new person to the idea of recovery. Sadly today, many people are under the belief that AA is group therapy, which it was never intended to be. They think that meetings keep them sober and they don't. They also think that a sponsor prevents you from drinking. A sponsor's primary purpose is to take someone through the 12 steps. Right, the 12 steps. AA is a 12 step fellowship, but many, many people don't take the 12 steps and just use AA as a place to bring their problems without trying to find a solution which is the 12 steps. An alcoholic is powerless over alcohol so naturally the answer to powerlessness is power. But how do you find that power? That's what the 12 steps are for.

    I'm 34 years old and first went to rehab when I was 17 a few times. Stayed sober for 3 years, drank, lost control a few years later and found myself back in AA which was the last place I wanted to be. Luckily, I found people who took the 12 steps and helped other people take the 12 steps. I took the 12 steps and live better now than I ever have and also have the priviledge to help other people take the 12 steps. It's great to see people get well and to watch them help other people get well. To quote the AA Big Book again there's a part that says "To watch people recover, to see them help others, to watch loneliness vanish, to see a fellowship grow up about you, to have a host of friends — this is an experience you must not miss. We know you will not want to miss it." I'm glad I didn't miss it.

    AA isn't for everybody but has helped a lot of people and has helped put families back together. The biggest problem I see is that people treat AA as a self help group therapy program when AA is actually a help others program. The 12th step says "...we carried this message to others..."

  26. I'm a member of AA who still goes to meetings twice a week after four years sober. I think the article above is well-written and very funny. I also think it's a load of old bollocks, but I hope we can all, alcoholic and otherwise, have a good laugh at ourselves. For sure many people in AA take themselves way too seriously and I've heard some crap talked in meetings. My life has also changed immeasurably and I'm far happier now than I was while drinking. If AA suits you come on down. If it doesn't, that's just fine too. Thanks for making me laugh.

  27. This is very funny! Yes, the whole AA philosophy is something I strongly disagree with. If it helps others, vunderful!

  28. I finally found like minded people with regard to AA. I am very dissatisfied with my sober experience in alcoholics anonymous. I agree with Alan, that most people in AA do not do what is prescribed by the program. The book says, "no human power could have relieved our alcoholism", yet you must call your sponsor everyday and not defecate without first running it by your sponsor? The 12 steps can work. The people who go to AA ought to work it and free themselves of the misery and judgement of others I see dragged into every meeting I go to.

    1. The quote is " possibly no human power...."

  29. I am glad to see other people like me out there. Aad after nine years with dealing with AA and the people. I am glad that it is over, now all I have to do is erase the memory. All they have done is trade one addiction for another. The only difference is this one is worse and life debilitating. There are other more productive ways to break any addiction. This brain washing program is not the answer.

  30. Amen on the above! Glad you are gone.

  31. I use to think AA did good, but the more I find about the history, the workings and the people, no thanks. I too am getting over a almost 10 year relationship. She's almost gone and I am glad. I have never been around so many loosers and dead end people in my whole life. They all talk a good talk, but the distruction they do to thier own life and feelings is amazing. They all preach a higher power, never God, it's my church, it's what I do.

    If you have a family member or friend in AA get them out. If they stay in long enough they will change for the worse forever and claim that AA did them good.

    They never are recovered, they are always recovering. If you need help, please go find it in professional help, family, friends, church, anything except AA.

    I personaly have learned my lesson. If you are in AA, stay away from me.

  32. I thought I was alone in my feelings. I have to agree with the negitive things I have read. I works for the first few years but after that the constant meetings, sponsors involvment, they loose all touch with what is good for them and thier families. AA involvment atfer 3 or 4 years should be it. No one should be in it for life. It is just wrong.


  33. Dude you got bigger issues at bay with your home life than coming on here and screaming at me or all of us. You don't like your life, change it! Your old man beats you, change it, quit crying to us and pushing him off to AA meetings so you can get some peace. The world is full of weak ass people that want someone else to fix thier problem. Put on your big boy pants and change things. I have, and now it is for the best.

  34. I will keep it simple:

    Dangerous Damaging Religious Cult

    Stay away from it and get your loved ones out of there before its to late!

    An ex AA/NA Member!

  35. You closed minded bigots! I am 2 years clean from crack due to my participation in NA. The only requirement for membership is the desire to stop using. Before this I could not go for 5 minutes without needing another hit!

  36. Glad you lots are feeling mentally sober too! Keep working those resentments that for today I don't have to live with!

  37. Closed minded bigots. Well, we are not the ones that can't control thier own mind and body. Going to these people are the cheap way out. Kinda like asking Tony the Poney for tips on how to win the Kentucky Derby.

    Put your little girl and boy pants on and get / seek / require professional help. My God, this is your life, your families and your futures your are harming.

  38. Perhaps, this is the reason alcoholics go to meetings and not " normies ? If you have nothing to do with the group why do you care so much? Don't you have better things to fix or talk about that goes on in you own life? Or do you look at the world to avoid looking at yourself?If you're going to make comments about the similarities of someone addicted to nicotine and the disease of alcoholism, I suggest you do a little research so your comments can be informed and thought provoking. Otherwise you sound like an idiot. I would love to hear your later comments on here after alcoholism has touched your life. The meetings also remind me how ignorant and naive I was once when I spoke like yourself. I'll see you or someone you love in the rooms.

  39. Oh my God! It felt so good to Google "I hate AA" and stumble upon this gem.

    For the people who find solace and sobriety in AA, good for you. BUT, don't rub my nose in that bullshit because I've gotten drunk a few times and made bad decisions.

    I went for a few months, got a sponsor and earned a chip on my "birthday." My sponsor and I used the "same kind of alcohol" in her words; we were addicted to painkillers. I just chose to attend AA because the people in NA were jittery meth addicts with only a few remaining teeth.

    It was preached that you were only an alcoholic if you admitted you were- despite this, I was told numerous times by my sponsor I was an alcoholic. I drink probably twice a month on average, and usually enjoy one or two drinks. I'm not an alcoholic. I know what a fucking addiction is- I have one.

    I kept getting told over and over again that certain people have allergies to alcohol and drugs. Actually, it's quite the contrary. Your body likes that shit, so you CAN'T stop using... you get SICK if you stop using. Don't tell me I have a fucking allergy to something my body replaces its own chemicals with. My body LIKES painkillers. No aversion here!

    And to the comment above mine, this guy wrote a blog about an experience. He can write about whatever the hell he wants and bash anything he wants. Ain't America a beaut'? And, interestingly, you're threatening that someone he loves may end up in AA- way to carry the message! I think it's pretty clear that his uncle is in AA...

    Rehab, here I come.

  40. "As Bill Sees It" said:
    We believe there isn't a fellowship on earth which devotes more care
    to its individual members; surely there is none which more jealously
    guards the individual's right to think, talk, and act as he wishes.
    No A.A. can compel another to do anything; nobody can be punished or
    Our Twelve Steps to recovery are suggestions; the Twelve Traditions
    which guarantee A.A.'s unity contain not a single "Don't." They
    repeatedly say, "We ought..." but never "You must!"
    << << << >> >> >>
    "Though it is traditional that our Fellowship may not coerce anyone,
    let us not suppose even for an instant that we are not under
    constraint. Indeed, we are under enormous coercion -- the kind that
    comes in bottles. Our former tyrant, King Alcohol, always stands ready
    again to clutch us to him.
    "Therefore, freedom from alcohol is the great `must' that has to be
    achieved, else we go mad or die."
    1. TWELVE AND TWELVE, P. 129
    2. LETTER, 1966

    1. I have yet to meet many "sane" people in this world and the outcome tends to be the same anyway :)

  41. This has been very entertaining. I think that anti-AA's will love what I have to say, and the AA traditionalists might be appalled by my comment.

    In 1996, I was diagnosed in a hospital, by PHD's as a chronic late stage alcoholic. They said I had a disease that was terminal, and that I would be dead in 5 years if I continued to drink. My liver was in 2nd stage faiilure heading toward cirrhosis coupled with hep C. I was heavy into meth, and also was a full blown junkie in the 80's - coke and synthetic morphine..there's more but I think you get the picture.

    Well I believed them, and had no idea what to do, so I did what they told me to do, which was hazeldon for 6 months, and banished to AA for life.

    I did AA for 5 years, and it really did help me.. I really needed help then and I got it.

    After 5 years of the same shit over and over and over, listening to the same people, say the same thing week after week after week, man o man, I started looking around, and saying Is this it?

    I want more for myself - and I can help people, and stay sober without going to those retched meetings..I mean come on! People come in there for 25 years, say the same thing every time, and never improve their life! Yeah, quitting drinking was great, my life is vastly improved, and AA did help, but I'll be damned if I'm gonna spend the rest of my life watching AA's smoke themselves into a coffin - Talk about death of a thousand knives!

    So here I am... almost 2010 - haven't touched a drop, or a drug all these years, my liver is ok, and the hep c is abated thanks to a God awful year on interferon. I am a family man, successful in business, sometime people ask me to help them quit drinking. It's hard, I just tell them my story, and support them, but let them find their own way. Most end up in AA which is ok, as long as you don't buy into that asinine axiom - they say this in AA all the time - As long as I didn't take a drink today I'm a success" REALLY? after 20 years thats it? Where is your ambition? What about your dreams? That is an axiom for idiots in my opinion. AA does work, get in, use it get some good clean time, then slowly move on to the rest of your life!

    1. I agree. AA helped me move my perspective of life and my decision making process from mis- directed to healthy...but i certainly didn't get sober to live in AA meetings...I got sober to enjoy a wonderful life!

  42. My New Year’s with to all of the AA long timers,

    It is my prayer this coming year that the AA long timers and the members who have been part if it for over a few years will finally realize that it is time to move on. While it has been well established that I have no faith in AA and AA has basically ripped my life apart, I will admit that for the short term it can do some good for people who need a little help to stop their drinking if they desire.

    I hope some of your realize that going to constant meetings, depressing meetings, is no way to go through life. This is optimistic for me but you all are stronger than you know. If you believe you are not strong, then you need other help besides AA.

    Take some time in this New Year and take inventory of what you see. There is nothing wrong with being reminded of where you came from. There is nothing wrong with the realization that you had a problem at one time. Do this for your and for your family. Bringing children up in a home where they are taught at an early age that every time you have a problem you need to be dependent on a faith, on a specific group to solve their problems is inherently wrong. Teach them that they have the ability to solve their own problems. Teach them to stand up for themselves. They are taught in school that there is no “I”. Everything is a team effort. Everyone gets a trophy. Everyone gets a ribbon. No one person is better than the other. There is no more independence in our education system. It wasn’t like this or it shouldn’t have been like this for you when you were growing up. There are people in this world that are better at some things than you and that is alright.

    Pray for yourselves. Pray for each of you.

    So this is my prayer to all of you.

    Make this a New Year to remember.

  43. I am so happy to have stumbled upon this wonderfully written story and all of these comments. It is so nice to know that I am not the only non-alcoholic in the world that deals with an alcoholic that cannot stand AA and its secret society of nut jobs. I was coaxed into attending al anon meetings and guess what? It is the same people wearing non-alcoholic's clothing following the same principals and steps as AA. Why in the world do I need to do the steps? I'll tell you why - because the alcoholic has made MY life unmanageable. WTF? How is it permissible for someone with an addiction to make MY life miserable then piously state that they are in AA and that AA people in their 'home group' are their 'family'? Where were these people when you were killing yourself with booze, spending all of your money on hotel rooms, cigarettes and booze, driving drunk, losing your job, your sober living room, stepped into rehab over and over and over? I can remember looking around and not seeing a single member of this 'family' there. So, yes, I am bitter and I hope that the new year brings some peach to all alcoholics and non-alcoholics alike and keep this blog going because it is my al-anon. Thank you all and happy new year.

  44. i got my first dui im 20 and i even havent gone to my court date yet ive been going to aa meetings before it because i know right away im ganna need it apart of that everytime i put in the court card i put in a dollar for the courtesy of it but when i picked up the court card from the "secretary" the other night she goes thank you keep comin back .. as i walk away i hear her go "sometimes i wonder if im too nice to them" to her fellow aa friend .. i was thinkin to go back and call her a hypocritical cunt or keep on going i decided to just leave but after the remark and readin this makes it true that they do have there clicks and look down at me because im young and they think im obligated to come to the fuckin meetings i aint a talker i go to listen to hear how pathetic everyone life was and is and i look at myself thinkin fuck this really aint for me but i really am forced to come to the damn meetings anyway i aint spiritual and a book telling me how i should run my life i think thats all bs its how I want to run my life and i believe in karma and thats what i think happend because i did do alot of horrible shit in my life it doesnt mean im a fkin alcoholic .. everybodys different and i dont judge anyone at all people tend to fuck up and have fun while drinkin its HUMAN FUCKIN NATURE!

    my name is david and im a sex addict

  45. I owe my life to AA. It's cool if you don't understand that. I just wanted to go on record as saying it. Cheers, a sober alcoholic.

    P.S. And to answer your question, no... you never stop being an alcoholic. Just like you never stop being a diabetic. It's a physical condition. It kills more people then you realize. It's fatal. I know you're trying to be funny in your blog, but you may want to think about what energy you're sending out into the universe and whether or not it's necessary.

  46. To the complete moron who responded above. You can't even comprehate what you just said, can you? Once something is over, it is over. You are proud to tell everyone who reads this that you can not stop something you start. That might be the case for you but don't preach this BS to anyone else. I suppose you never grown up or you still take baby asprin or you are a recovering Catholic. Good God, grow some balls.

    It is physical condition, deal with it and just stop drinking. As far as being funny, I am someone completely different and I have lived with with someone who belived so strongly in this that they gave up all they had for the good of the organization. Which might be fine if it weren't for the fact they took children down this road with them. The truth about this organization is finaly coming to light and it is long over due. You brow beat someone long enough with the same old retoric and they will belive anything.

    I feel so sorry for you.

  47. If you don't know AA or the damage it does, why are you even here?

    If you haven't lived through this caos, then you don't have a vaild opinion.

  48. My ex-partner and I both started out in AA (which I had drifted in and out of for years) -- I had a mild problem, which I eventually resolved on my own (seeing a therapist, getting treated for depression -- after which suddenly drinking didn't interest me). I since then have had an occasional drink (always limited to one) that happens maybe three times a year. The boyfriend, however, had a much worse problem (daily drinking which led to cocaine abuse which led to a crack addiction). He jumped head first into AA, bought into every aspect of it, and every word that comes out of his sponsor's mouth is like the words of Jesus or something. Granted, yes, I am glad that he is three months sober after many previous failed attempls. Problem is, now he has decided that he is spiritually superior to me (and most everyone else who is not "lucky enough to be a part of AA", and is on this lofty ego trip -- I think to myself, "gee whiz, you managed to live three months without sucking on a crack pipe, you want a medal or something?" and yes indeed, they get medals, -- nice little coins congratulating them on doing what the rest of the world does on a daily basis -- not treating people like shit and sucking down every drop of alcohol and drug in site. Whoopee. News flash: You're still an ass. Sober or drunk, most of these people are still the same self-righteous, self centered folks they were before, but their alcohol use has been replaced with their abuse of ego. Nevermind the people who's lives they destroyed, who will likely never "recover" from what the drunk person did to them (I don't care if you make amends, it never erases the damage you caused).

    I got heavy criticism from AA'ers who were predominantly anti-psychiatry and psychology (anti-therapist)and felt that therapy and psychiatry was in direct conflict to AA -- their whole mantra was, "you don't have a psychological problem, you have a spiritual disease: alcoholism" -- hence all you need is AA, nothing else. Well, guess what guys, yes I did have a psychological problem--and the therapy and psychoanalysis helped. The medications helped. Now I am off all meds, have no desire to drink, and am happy. But this is very upsetting to AA'ers that I know. Apparently if you don't do it their way, by going to every meeting, following a sponsor like some sort of blind disciple, and nod your head yes to everything that is told to you , then are less than them. Well, screw you, AA, I got sober, I'm happy, and I live my life in a way that feels good to me and I treat others with kindness and respect. Yet I am still told by AA'ers that I just "don't get it" because I reject their method, and "being sober is not enough, you have to have a spiritual awakening". Well, some people "get sober" just fine without belonging to their cult. Look, I'm glad some people got help, but I still think its a cult. I still think the heavy element of self--righteousness and the notion of
    "powerlessness" is ridiculous. You are the only one who controls whether your hand takes a glass of booze and puts in in your mouth. Just like a diabetic decides whether or not to eat a damn cookie. And no, this supposed God isn't going to reach down from a cloud and fix your life (oh -- being an atheist in AA is almost grounds for beating -- they claim to be a non religous organization -- well look at the history, it was founded as a religious organization). Its almost offensive to them that you are able to take care of your own crap without them.

    There are other ways to get sober withouth the cult and the brainwashing of AA.

    AA is probably very nice for some people, their insecurites are preyed upon just enough to convince them that they can't live without it. Radical church groups have been doing it for years, its nothing new. And the egotistical self-righteousness that goes with it is pretty much the same, too.

  49. Amen to the above lady and her comments. Too bad there are not others out there to give support like she did.

  50. I have been sober for three years thanks to AA. I came from a good upbringing with good morals. I still go to meetings but have to say that most of the people there come from the gutter and still act as if they are out drinking or on the street. I have learned all of my new irresponsible and immature behaviors from the people in AA. I did not know that people could get away with some of the things they did. Nobody is perfect "Humans will always fail us," but shouldnt people in AA treat each other right and stick to their word??? This makes it so hard for me to respect AA.

  51. They say in the treatment center - "Stay with the winners" I have done that for 14 years, and I've found that staying with the winners means extricating myself from AA over time. Even the winners in AA are losers.. sadly -

  52. I met a great guy who was sober for 6 years, still going to AA quite regularly, which was fine with me, I thought it was a good thing but I knew nothing about it. We had so much fun, had a lot in common, could talk about anything and did I thought....after dating exclusively for almost a year, he told me he was doing his steps again....i said ok, i will support you any way I can, he seemed like a strong person...come to find out he was doing steps to get over his feelings for me?....I guess this relationship was too much for him? he said it was too good he stopped calling me and would not take my calls. I did not deserve to be treated that way and wonder is this just what recovering alcoholics do?

  53. Yes this is very common for hard core AAers. They will apply the steps to anything. It's obsessive and absolutely overboard. It's overkill... all it is really - is admitting that you can be powerless over any given thing at any given time. Good for you - sounds like a nut case.. AA is full of them.

  54. Think about the safety everyone has in AA. Here you are confessing bullshit to a room full of sick people. What's to say that they don't have a flip video camera recording the whole thing blasting it on youtube. I'm telling people out there to be careful about what mistakes you admit in those rooms.

    One time I was in a room and a guy confessed to stealing some stuff and boasting about how stupid a store was. Guess what, I managed the store he was stealing from and we caught him the very next time he was in.

    That's one alcoholic helping another.

    Get real people. If you are an honest person, treat people well and happen to get forced into aa because you like to party a lot, there are better ways to quit.

    The reason is that the minute you walk in those rooms, the members will convince you that you have to admit to the "alocholic mind" and confess what Bill Wilson & Frank Buchanan called alcoholic defects of character.

    It's bullshit. I was in for 6 years and never had been so abused in my entire life by all the "wise sponsors" who gave suggestions.

    Be responsible for your own life. Make good decisions and be careful not to fall into the trap.

  55. Thanks dennyhil..It really is best I know this now rather than later...I mean, life throws things at you that you have to deal with responsibly, head on at cannot be powerless over everything, you won't get anywhere that way! I know I am not powerless over any situation, especially this one.....I am confident... I KNOW I can handle any situation!

  56. Maybe they should admit they are powerless over AA to

  57. I agree with most of the people here that AA is full of seriously warped people - at least the regulars who dominate the meetings. I noticed the longer people had been members of AA, the weirder they were.

    The whole premise of AA seems warped to me - I think if people believe they have a Disease which is only treatable by Submission to a "Higher Power" (and Going to Interminable Meetings and Using Capital Letters Inappropriately), they are in denial just as much as they ever were when drinking.

  58. The problem is if you are suffering some kind of depression or anxiety disorder and the doc throws you into AA you are basically very vulnerable. This happened to me and I thought AA would actually cure my mental condition because I would believe anything. My therapist said I had to get sober and then I find out this person is an AA member. Guess what? My mental condition deteriorated and drove me back to he bottle. There are some good things taught in the 12 steps but why does it have to be so fanatical?

  59. Anyone who has reservations about AA and the 12 step fellowship,and I sure as hell do,look up online ' The Orange Papers',it says it all.

  60. I'm 21, recovered member of alcoholics and cocaine anonymous. I've recovered from a hopeless state of body and mind.

    I like to go on google and find out why people hate/leave AA and understand their perspective. I too struggle with views a lot of you do who aren't even alcoholic/addict. I have my ideas of a perfect meeting and have been to a few. I recover from the steps I take, not the meetings I make.

    Also consider. If you've never been in a state where you know you're killing yourself, everyone around you, and have lost everything due to your drinking/drugging, yet you know you're going to do it again, even when you don't want to...that's hopeless. And unless you've EXPERIENCED that, you have no understanding of it. I am not interested in opinions of something you haven't experienced (i get it a lot in meetings)

    What is an alcoholic? it has NOTHING to do with amount of drink or time of drinking.

    allergy: When I injest alcohol, I react differently than most people. I experience a phenomenom of craving which makes it virtually impossible to stop. (look it up)

    obsession of the mind: I become pre-occupied with alcohol and my mind will push out what it does TO me and remind me of what it does FOR me, makes me feel RIGHT, like you guys, the normal people that are OK with themselves. So my mind will inevitably bring me back to alcohol regardless of how strong my desire is to not drink.

    Near the end, alcholics/addicts are not "partying" too much. The women going back to the crack house she was raped at the night before is not looking for more "party", she's looking to feel right.
    Drinking and Using made me feel OK with everything, something I had never experienced growing up, it's my solution to life.

    Now the program of AA, which are the 12 steps (which are the fundamentals to many roads of spirituality) offer promises that do not occur in any other treatment of a fatal illness. "life will take on a new meaning" (along with many more) which has been my experience.

    Why do I along with other still consider myself an alcoholic or addict? Even though the urge to pick up or drink has not occured in quit some time (which is a miracle for people like us) is because there is no cure for alcoholism. the allergy never goes away.

    I am now happy, joyous and free. purely not drinking leaves me worse than if I was. alcohol is my solution, take that away I may be sober, but I'm miserable. the steps allow me to recover and live a life that was not imaginable.

  61. I hate aa because of the self fulfilling prophecy of jails, institutions, and death that it instills in its members belief system. Additionally, the coercion, debate techniques, propaganda, sophistry, closed mindedness to other forms of abstinence, etc. are just too much for someone that is "too smart" for the programming. AA kills the disobedient believer while it helps the compliant cult member. It is a cult program full of financial and sexual predators. There, now that you know the truth, it’s safe to go to aa and use the support system that exists in the fellowship.

    My favorite program is harm reduction, my favorite fellowship network is aa, and my favorite aa website is stinkin thinkin.

  62. I am probably an alcoholic, but i have to admit i hate aa. as a religious studies phd, i have lots of problems wiht the whole theology, and i have to admit that when i have gone, the theology these people have just wants me to scream, and yes, drink. so i don't think i can do aa. and i haven't found an alternative. which is sad, too. not really sure what to do. but aa is defintitely out for me.

  63. For me, AA has been great to get sober up fast, detox and get a clear head again. I don’t know, maybe it has to do with the daily group encouragement of counting days and you feel part of something. Usually, they give the newcomers lots of attention, getting some sober friends, a sponsor, going out to eat with sober people etc. You feel less lonely as the alcohol & drugs leave your system. Overall, when you’re counting days, it feels like you’re on the right track. It’s an opportunity to get some sober references too, particularly if you’ve been boozing and drugging for a while. You realize that the alcohol and drugs is the culprit and now you’ve got to do something about it. Once you have a sober head, then you can decide what to do about your life.
    One of the many problems I have with AA is that they preach their way is the only way to get sober, stay clean and get your life back. You got to be careful of this, because I was brainwashed of this for years and it actually made me pretty depress & at one point, I had suicidal thoughts after relaspes. But, as a result of staying sober for a number of years, and then after a number of relapses, I came to my senses. I decided that I can take care of myself and I was not afraid of my own self will. I decided to leave AA after much thought; after I did this, all my sober friends and sponsor stopped staying in contact with me and avoided me like the plague. Sometimes, I wonder if our friendship was just phony, but then I realized, that is something they just do to people who leave the program.
    I’m doing fine; I’m still spiritual and value my life. I meditate daily and work on staying in the moment, which I got from reading lots of Buddhist literature; I pray daily, have worked on my self esteem issues and learned how to have a positive outlook on life. I have the support of my family and real friends. I still use some skills I learned while in AA, like making a gratitude list at times, realizing that “feelings are not facts”. I know my urges passes all the time. I know I don’t have to act on some stupid animalistic urge & desire to seek and get pleasure from substances. I know that pleasure seeking part of me, so I keep it in check. When it acts up, I say “down boy, down”.

  64. I have to say that as a former alcoholic, you have hit the nail on the head. It truly amazes me that meeting makers think they are the only ones who "make it". I agree that AA is good for some, as they say, "some are sicker than others". Hats off to a very well written piece of material! For those of you in "the program" and who find this blog offensive. I have a suggestion, turn off your computers and open your Big Books and call your sponsor, then get back to us if you still have time. Peace out.

  65. If it’s a medically proven fact that someone is medically intolerant to anything, wouldn’t it be medically advisable that they just stop ingesting whatever they’re intolerant to? Lactose, onions, vinegar whatever? As far as obsession, that’s all they have to talk about is drinking. Most likely they’ll go on for a half hour about how much they drank. Then for about 3 minutes, they’ll say that they walked into the rooms and wanted nothing to do with it and kept coming back anyway and are happy now.
    If someone is angry or afraid like every person on the planet experiences from time to time it is labeled as a soul sickness that caused a bottle or drug to end up in someone’s hand en route to their mouth. I guess that would mean that people have no control over their muscles, thoughts, tongues and swallowing.
    If someone feels guilty or shameful over something they think it will do good to keep harping on it for the rest of their lives and convert other confused folks to do the same again and again and again.
    AA also has plenty of opinions about people. Mainly one another where many can sit around and call themselves all kinds of names like delusional, sick, sinful, imanalcoholic etc. Occasionally even for 20 or 30 years, or so some claim.
    People who go to AA Meetings also scream at the top of their lungs and heap out loads of abuse on others at home. AA has nothing to do with an abusive person. If someone is abusive get the hell away from them. Don’t buy their nonsense about treating someone who has hurt you the same way you would treat a sick friend with pneumonia.
    As for Al Anon, AAs think that their families are diseased so the purpose there is to rally around the AA with each other under the cloak of working on themselves because they’re told they have a disease too. I can’t believe this stuff goes on in 2010!!!
    Not to mention the miserable recovery statistics. This is probably in part due to the programming that the only option someone has to liberate themselves from this group is to go get bent. It’s just not so. You can simply walk away if you don’t like it.

  66. wow all of this for almost two years has been said by you all and this guy went to "one" meeting. amazing! maybe he can visit the oil rig down in the gulf that's leaking one time and fix it too? or maybe go to the mid east once and fix that problem? or maybe visit a cancer patient and fix them too after just one visit. it seems to me that the bulk of you, if not all have little belief in a God of any kind. i've read some of these posts a number of you say belief in God is weak especially if you rely on Him for help staying sober. oh, and did anyone ever think that the guy who still goes to meetings just might be there to help the next suffering person walking in the door? or did anyone ever think the the program of AA still exists for over 70 something years because it 'does' in fact work to help people?

    i just think that it's poor, very poor to go to 'one' AA meeting, post this and knock it around and rally up a bunch of other sick fucks who happen to believe the same thing. why don't we just pull an Obama on all of us sick people, give us a pain pill, pat us on the ass and send us on our way to stay dependent not only on the drugs but government too so every one else like the original author of this blog can pay our way for us in health care costs and keep telling us how we should live our lives?

    in most parts of this world we are free to come and go as we please. we can do what we want to. if i want to continue to go to AA meetings for the rest of my life to get the help i need to live day to day without drinking and to be there to help others that's my business. you all are free to come check it out too. but to pass such strong judgment on it like this publicly just killed a large number of people who won't ever seek AA as a possible solution to their alcoholic problem. if you didn't like the meeting you went to then try another one. if that still didn't feel good try another. if you still don't like it try something else. you're free to do what you want just like the next person.

  67. and as far as statistics ya go.

    This information is primarily from the A. A. World Services pamphlet

    Alcoholics anonymous can be found all over the world - in more than 97,000 groups. Look for A. A. or Alcoholics Anonymous in your local phone book.

    In 2001, more than 7500 A. A. members (out of several million) participated in a random survey of the membership.

    The following graphs and charts are based on that information.

    Ages of Members
    Gender of Members

    Under age 21 2%
    Age 21 through 30 9%
    Age 31 through 40 24%
    Age 41 through 50 31%
    Age 51 through 60 20%
    Age 61 through 70 10%
    Over 70 4% Women 33%

    Men 67%

    Marital Status of Members Composition of Membership
    Married 37%
    Single 31%
    Divorced 24%
    Widowed 5%
    Separated 3%
    White 88%
    Black 5%
    Hispanic 4%
    Native American 2%
    Asian & Other 1%
    Introduction to A. A. Members' Occupations
    Factors most responsible (two responses permitted)
    Self Motivated 33%
    Through an A. A. member 32%
    Treatment Facility 32%
    Family 23%
    Court Order 12%
    Counseling Agency 8%
    Health Care provider 7%
    Employer or fellow worker 4%
    Non-AA friend or neighbor 4%
    A. A. Literature 2%
    Al-Anon or Alateen Member 2%
    Correctional facility 2%
    Print media or radio/TV 1%
    Member of clergy 1%
    Other 4%
    Professional/Technical 13%
    Self Employed/Other 13%
    Retired 13%
    Manager/Administrator 10%
    Laborer 7%
    Health Professional 6%
    Sales Worker 5%
    Service worker 4%
    Craft Worker 4%
    Educator 3%
    Clerical Worker 3%
    Student 3%
    Homemaker 2%
    Transportation (equip oper.) 2%
    Disabled (not working) 5%
    Unemployed 7%

    Length of Sobriety Sponsorship & Groups
    Sober more than 5 years 48%
    Sober between 1-5 years 22%
    Sober less than 1 year 30%
    Average sobriety of members is more than seven years
    Members with a sponsor 77%
    Got a sponsor within 90 days 71%
    Members belonging to a home group 88%

    Additional Help....Before Additional Help....After
    Before coming to A. A., 61% of the members received some type of treatment or counseling, such as medical, psychological. spiritual, etc. 74% of those members who received treatment or counseling said it played an important part in directing them to A. A. After coming to A. A., 64% of the members received some type of treatment or counseling such as medical, psychological, spiritual, etc. 85% of those members who received treatment or counseling said it played an important part in their recovery from alcoholism.

    where are there any better statistics???? post them. i'd like to see them.

  68. Doug,

    Why are you so defensive? If you had no doubts you wouldn't be defending AA.

  69. The original story of the "normie" was freakin hillarious. I like others have suffered from addiction to mind altering substances, people ,unhelpful beliefs, lies. Been to plenty of twelve step meetings, over the course of the last twenty something years, enough to see,(because I'm not high)what works about em and what doesn't. About the best that can be said is that while your suffering from the initial response to some scary stuff, jail, illness, abject lonliness caused by alcohol/chemical abuse it is a free and receptive environment. If you stay sober, it's because you changed your life, how you think, what you do. You're not really going to learn that in an AA meeting, since they promote that you are incapable of doing so unless you believe that an imaginary "friend, parent" is the only hope you have. I practice Buddhism, yep, a dadblamed atheist I am. A practice of understanding cause and effect, and just how much power I have to effect my life if I'm not intoxicated and use my f'ing brain. I go to one women's AA meeting a week, for the sole purpose of countering the crap, of offering another way of looking at addiction. When I hear all the holyroller hyperbole I usually say something like The truth I've discovered is that if I want to drink God's not going to stop me. You should see the looks on the AA addicts faces. Buddhism teaches the cause of suffering is ignorance and the clinging to illusions. Welcome to AA.

  70. In AA meetings I listened to a man just out jail for molesting his own grandchild mutliple times talk and talk and talk about how he tries every day to be a better person.
    A woman 25 years sober in AA and a insecure mean spirited bitch picks up her 25 year chip - months later tries to off herself with pills and booze. Come to find out she wasn't even sober when she picked up the chip.
    Another 30 year member hates the child of the AA'er she just married. Spiritual huh!Hates just about everyone in the program but swears by it.
    No one in the program can be trusted because anything said in confidence is passed around and even repeated to you.
    Extremely judgemental.
    Was told I should have my face slapped when I picked up wine at the death of my mentally retarded brother who'd been in my care all of my life - even lived together at one point to provide care.
    Assaulted physically by a crazy old bitch with 20-30 years who grabbed me at the end of the a meeting and literally shook the shit out of me while her nasty old breath and face was in my face.
    Listened to another crazy old bitch 30 plus years berate me for picking wine during the grief, shock and misery of brothers death.
    Spiritually enlightened (?)and still so very very angry, hmmmmm.
    Creepy guy used stare at me all the time.
    It's a miracle?
    The angriest sickest most fucked up people I have ever met in my life I met in AA.
    So - when they read that shit from the big book and talk about a spiritual awakening - then tell you they are spiritual - they are lying.
    "if you want what we have..." RU Kidding me?
    No Way In Hell -
    There is nothing about AAer's I want.
    These people aren't even civil.
    sponsors are like controlling sick parents - many are just bullies -
    " I am not a bad person, sure I beat my wife for 35 years, starved the dogs and fucked the kids but I am really not a bad person I am sick person trying to well." Followed by the snickers of approval from the group.
    Crazy m-----f-----
    But remember
    "If you leave, you will die."
    So far so good - no wine - and I am alive. Maybe I am not alive - maybe I am in denial - maybe all I need is a meeting. snicker, snigger.
    It is good that there is a place for the assholes to go - keeps them together - away from me.

  71. This is a brilliant article, and proves that people truly do practice contempt prior to investigation.

    Free speech rules though!

    PS ... I'm in AA.

  72. I got disillusioned by AA. And yes I don't want what most of them have. I already have what I want....when you have to go look for what you have already, that in it of itself is a form of mental I just hover in the background and take information in and sometimes I am surprised that man hasn't destroyed himself utterly...but then it's not God's will to do so.

    Recovery to me is to not be defiant against your own creator to such a point where you need a self deprecating program. It is not glamorous to call yourself an alcoholic nor is it God's will. Because God sees us as perfect. Your either awake or not and will act such accordingly. namaste

    A brother

  73. AA? well what I have experienced is that the woman I love more than anything and any woman I've ever known is being turned against me and my heart is being ripped in two Why, well I am / was a trigger. thought I was a human. I have quit before when she needed to and then when she started again - a few times over 3 years, I would drink some too, sometimes not much sometimes a lot - keeping up with her. She can't stop after a couple and says it is unable to handle it, well maybe she is. I can see that. I am drinking far less as she no longer does, and don't around her. But I am still considered a trigger. Why? Because she liked the times we had together when we had a few beers. The problem is the baby is being thrown out with the "beer water". I helped her kick subox when she had to be on it to get off hydros. Yet some how I was not thought of as a trigger, no we did not do those things together but then we also both smoked. she quit. .I still am some. we both do nico gum but she does not think of me as a nico trigger - and I don't some around her. She does not consider herself a smoker, but an ex-smoker who still likes a nico kick - or needs it. The difference is AA who she now "really likes" and they are making her miserable pushing her away from me - her very best friend. But she thinks her misery is just not being able to drink - and she is having a hard time not. She does need to stop, booze was screwing up her liver and gave her a intestinal hernia. I'm all for her quitting but not for her trashing our - or seriously weakening our deep deep relationship. She won't listen to any other ways of quitting like moderation (guess she is convinced that won't work - and maybe it won't) or any meds that can help dull the urge, etc. I love her so very much and don't know what to do as I see this AA monster ripping us apart. quitting drinking is not the problem, AA taking over her life is. She is so blinded by them and their doctrine. OH, we both are Christians and I have no problem with that but this is warping and presenting a warped definition of what a real relation with Jesus Christ is, its becoming a substitute god in some ways that is being used to destroy loving relationships. They care about building themselves up more than the inductees and have no care for the lives they damage in the process. I don't care if we don't drink, I just don't want to ever loose her and I'm scared by what I see happening to us - courtesy of AA brain washing. I have to sign anonymous - it would be horrible for me and us if this got back. Not to be a chicken, - just defending my life which is currently at risk and under attack from insidious poisonous ideas. She stayed away most of Christmas afraid I am the big trigger, made up reasons, mixed with real, valid ones. Big struggle fer her yesterday, can't hardly do it, sux, "her solution - thinks she just has to go to a bunch more meetings! She's miserable in large part cause she thinks she has to stay away from Trigger. I am not a horse.

  74. Rachel
    Sorry - but it is contempt AFTER INVESTIGATION! Learned in AA what I learned long ago - you can't trust a drunk.

    It is obvious you "are in the program," that is why you cannot be original just quote doctrine that you use to separate yourself from others "normies." Did you know that 10 % of Big book sales go to Bill's mistress. IS THAT SOBRIETY = from booze to p---y.

    Enjoy those meetings - you are sitting there with the salt of earth, indeed, Bill used to sit there with one hand on the legs of each female newcomer that came through the door.

    Be carefull.

  75. Please look at the website, and the orange papers.

  76. AA has many 'cult-like' characteristics and destroys families. More and more people are talking about the damage AA has caused them. The blog, stinkin thinkin, and morerevealed are meeting places for survivors.

  77. AA is nothing but a bunch of judgmental, caffeine and nicotine addicted losers who never fit in anywhere until they came to AA. So many of them talk about how they've made friends "for the first time" in AA. How pathetic is that?! It's a narrow-minded cult, full of people who are completely willing to allow the institution of AA to strip them of their own identity and their autonomy.

  78. I just went to a meeting this morning. My second and unfortunately not my last. I was advised that it viewed favorably to the Judge, because they think everyone that gets at DUI is an alcoholic. Sorry, actual AA people...

    I also googled "I hate Alocoholics Anonymous" as obviously like minded others did. Oh, dear God - not dear "higher power"...God.

    AA might be the "it's where I finally belong" place. But, I soooo didn't belong.

    The ironic thing about the comment that "I didn't belong" is the hypocrisy as I was sitting there and thinking that. The meeting begins with be honest, be truly honest, pray for people in denial, etc. However, if I honestly said that "I am not an alcoholic", then they would think that "I was in denial".

    I said my name, but didn't say "and I'm an alcoholic." A long pause before I got the united "welcome".

    My story is that I got a DUI and will be ordered to go to aa meetings, get a sponsor and report this to a PO for months.

    It's fine with me that AA helps people. Who am I to judge. (Even though they have me pegged as a lier) Right? But it is going to be one of the myraid of punishments that I will be orderd by a Judge to do and complete. I will have to say, I could go to jail. I still don't know yet. I blew a .11. Really? Jail? Maybe. Thanks MADD.

    God Bless or "Higher Power" anyone who goes to AA on purpose. Just reach inside yourselves to finding some kind of belief that "NOT EVERYONE IS AN ALCOHOLIC!!!"

    And that is the undeliable and honest truth!

  79. To the person who started this post, what would you suggest someone who has problem with alcohol do? Since you seem so educated on AA, what are our options? Just say no. I don't think you understand addiction. Some people need a lot of support to help quit drinking. What's wrong with going to meeting then to get that support? If you aren't addicted, you really might not understand the impact it can have on your life.

  80. To The person who started this post,
    Amen you are 100% right I am clean and sober for several years my life was a mess I tried these meetings and my god what a bunch of sniffeling cry babies whoa is me my life is unmanagable. Try pulling yourself together I never looked back after 27 years of use. You wanna be weak and never forget or transend the past and move on to better things yes AA you truley are powerless thats why the relapse rate is so high in the program.

  81. AA, what a load of crap. Americans will believe just about anything and the nonsense about "allerig reaction to alcohol", 'powerlessness', 'miracles on demand' and the sould killing, just keep coming back.

    Makes my head wiggle

  82. Hello everyone.

    Like several of you who have posted above me, I too Google'd 'I hate AA', in order to find this blog!

    I have been in AA recently, as I was sent there by third parties, as many of us are. Yet I have found myself getting worse, as AA simply does not treat the underlying condition. Actually, in fairness, AA does not claim to do do this, although it does claim to treat the somewhat vague and nebulous condition of 'alcoholism', whatever that means...

    Anyhow, using myself as an example, in order to illustrate the point; one of the underlying conditions making me feel like I need to drink, is social anxiety, and the pressure-pot of AA intensified these feelings.

    The stress and confusion induced by the subtle and often insidious expectations of being in AA, as well as the more overt conformity/ 'group-think' tendencies, made things much worse for me.

    These can be problems for free thinkers, rationalists, and liberal-progressive types of personalities, those of us who instinctively question institutions, systems, and authority structures, especially if timid and shy.

    I could only begin to see this by distancing myself from AA, in order to regain some perspective over my condition.

    So I would encourage others that find AA problematic, to look to the primary underlying conditions and get them treated first, for example, by going to a self-help group that simply focuses on, as in my case, social anxiety.

    Maybe after I have thoroughly addressed this problem, I will attempt to re-engage with AA more on my terms, and not feel disoriented by the generally recognized problematic aspects of AA, but I have not yet made up my mind about that...

    I sincerely hope that my brief illustration can help any other struggling sentient beings in this world. I am trying to be constructive and do not wish to play into the polarity of pro/ anti AA, as I only hope that we can all find our own freedom from suffering in this world.

    Good luck everyone, and best wishes!

  83. HI Ben , nice post. I would love to have you on my radio show Safe Recovery

    Also check out what state are you in? Can I interview you for my Documentary that I am making?
    please contact me at

    my blog is

  84. When I initially went to AA meetings, I found the whole interweaving of God in its strategy to be indicative of lunacy. You are "love bombed" when you first come in i.e. everyone is attempting to get you indoctrinated by making you feel less than them and consequently in need of their glorious "expertise". Then comes the self-immolation bit..where you must deem your own mental resources unworthy and turn to "God"...whether you chant, swing chickens, or go to cult houses in Brazil is irrelavant, so long as you have a sponsor and read together outside by a tree or inside in a clubhouse. Then you must tell this person all the soul-crushing details of your life bit by bit down to the last drop so you can find out why you were the person to blame in the end run...the only person you need to be telling things like that to is someone with PSY.D. at the end of their name..and that within itself does not justify anything, so why invest in the help of an alcoholic? I believe in the service aspects of this program...but you don't need to go to a meeting to find out that the reason why you feel unloved is because you are not a source of love yourself...speaking out at detoxes is a very good thing. But I think one can find themselves when they psychologically develop or discover their cultural identity or make closure through psychological therapy the monster that has been plaguing their subconcious for some time. The meetings thrive on the same theory of repetition....someone's personal story, a selection out of "The Big Book" which the members view as their only "pastor"...sounds a bit like Christian Science..but in reality you are really sinking further and further away from living a meaningful and substantial life if you invest in the help of people who don't realize they are pulling other people down making them think that if they don't have as much time as "they do"...they are not as worthy. You can call it bad vibes, shoddy perception, etc..but I have never criticized the service aspects of this program...participation at detoxes can be very therapeutical. But this is tantamount to any life experience that enables you to wake up and realize how reaching out to others is the best medicine. Another horrible thing is the gossip that can float around group members if one decides to depend on the group to help them through prescription drug addiction, withdrawal, survival, etc. These people know nothing about medicine only a psychiatrist should serve as an accurate sounding board. And do not let these people fool you into thinking they are the saints of the universe..there are plenty of non-alcoholic and former alcoholics that simply don't drink and don't have to go to meetings that can impart love and empathy through their own spiritual value. One does not have to be "AA-certified" to qualify as a substantial person. Many of the people who at first seem spiritual and cutting edge are really old-timers looking to live vicariously through making you think they are just that...if you need meetings I suggest you go and listen but not get too involved with the groups...and always remember that we have the ability to think critically...2nd step, 3rd step or indifferent. These are our gifts.

  85. Oh my GOD, I am sooo.... happy someone else hates AA. Yea, I know, I wasted 15 years of my life in the cult watching people die while the newcomer got exploited for sex and cash. They say it's not a religion yet they pray and speak of God constantly. They say it's not a cult but they worship Bill Wilson the prophet, separate you from your family with meetings, and swear you to anonymity. If it wern't for the sporting women it would have no value at all.

  86. I too "Googled" the term; "I hate AA" because I knew it would be the best Boolean search string for finding those of like mind.

    Indeed, I was right!

    I agree with many of the comments here and the general belief that A.A. is, in fact, a cult. A.A. has a long and illustrious (or dubious) history as an organization that helps those who cannot help themselves. In fact, it is an organization that helps those who are powerless over their own inability to control their desire to drink until they are drunk. For many, A.A. becomes their new "addiction". In fact, I have personally known people who get jittery and nervous when they can't find a ride to an A.A. meeting because they couldn't reach their sponsor/God.

    It is my contention that A.A. does far more damage than good, at least for the individual in attendance. It replaces self worth with group approval whereby, one does not feel whole and confident unless someone in "the group" tells them they are. It replaces self-control with fear of disapproval from so-called old timers.

    I contend that the only way to achieve true "sobriety" coupled with true progress in forwarding ones sense of self worth is to do so from within ones person and not from within an A.A. meeting.

    Spare me the addictions to coffee and chain smoking thank you very much. As for me I will make strides in improving my sense of self worth, my financial picture and my relationships by DOING it rather than talking about doing it and vacillating about how to get it done.

    Get off your ass, stop wimpering to other losers about being a loser and get out there and start being a winner. When you fail, dust off your butt and get right back in the game. The greatest barrier to success is the fear of failure and the greatest barrier to personal growth is to label yourself with a negative moniker such as an alcoholic.

    "Hi my name is (fill in the blank) and I'm an alcoholic"

    Give me a break. How long does one have to say this to convince themselves that they are? God loves everyone without condition so the next time you attend an A.A. meeting just say, "Hi my name is (fill in the blank) and God loves me exactly the way I am" Then piss everyone off and say, "I'm just here to listen, thanks!"

  87. I love this blog, right on!!! Wanted to comment, AA causes & will continue to cause, a lot of destruction to members & their families. AA's true believers, have manipulated members into leaving their families, children behind if they interfere with their sobriety. AA preaches & practices isolation, dangerous cult behavior. Also, many attractive,vulnerable, young females have been brutally abused in AA, by the predatory 13th steppers. Bill W., that raging, narcissist lunatic, was the original 13th stepper. It's too bad smoking, adultery, manipulation & mental illness were not "spiritual diseases", like an addiction to alcohol. AA is a bad stop, former members, all clean, they have not died in the gutter from being drunk, although Bill predicted this future with his crystal ball, said former members are recommending the FBI investigates AA. This would be an excellent start to end this archaic, incompetent cult. Like all cults, the big dogs that run AA @ GSO services make huge, 6 figure salaries, almost 7 figures. They have got all the volunteers "giving back" & doing all the work!!! AA & Bill W., absurd lunacy.

  88. great writing.. i admire you. I am an addict. Sometimes it is all that i am. I find that listening to others in AA can make you crazy. reading and getting something from the literature is good. find out about the program from the source. even the founders were fucked up... but there is something in it that really resonates for everyone. just my opionion

  89. The person that wrote July 20, 2011 at 1:04pm is RIGHT ON! When I quit AA I wanted to keep it quiet and completely to my self. The more I let it sit the more I got angry with them so now I'm trying speak out a bit more. I'm spiritual, open and I try to be non-judgmental. I feel healthy ( do yoga 5 times a week) but AA is FUCKED UP!! Yes~ they do try to tear your family apart, they do keep you away from your children, they do tell you you WILL DIE if you stay away, they expect you to pay, and they make you think that your mind, body and spirit is nonexistent without AA!!! CULT, CULT, CULT!! This group is dangerous and I've seen people die sober because of this group. These people are master manipulators and they will take advantage of you! I've had a sponcor steel some of my clothes while at my house working the steps, I've had a women make a scene at my work...very in a appropriate!! The list goes on and on!! I made a huge jump after I left completely! I'm more confident and believe in my self! AA should be legally prosecuted for being a cult!! period! Lots of love!
    PS~ If you tell them at a meeting that your truly happy, take notice of all the stares you'll get! They get angry and sarcastic when your having a good day!

  90. Many great and famous people have changed their lives through AA. Many ordinary folks too.
    Nobody at AA cares if you go or not. AA isn't the only way. Start your own organization or sober up by yourselves.
    My Uncle was in AA and told me some people are too far gone to help due to brain damage. Kind of sounds like you guys.

  91. Step 1: We came to understand that only our Coercing Authority can restore our drivers' licenses and/or our freedom from threats of incarceration.

    Step 2: We admitted that we were powerless over the Coercing Authority compelling us to attend these meetings.

    Step 3: We made a decision to submit to our Coercing Authority by gathering signatures to provide as evidence that we had been physically present at these meetings.

    Step 4: We made a list of available qualifying meetings and became entirely resigned to having to attend them until our Coercing Authority's power over us subsided.

    Step 5: We attended such meetings to the full extent to which we were able to numb our minds, smile vacantly, and parrot back their slogans.

    Step 6. We humbly requested that the chairpersons of said meetings sign our Proof of Attendance sheets, so that our Coercing Authority might remove its hold on us.

    Step 7: We suppressed the urge to point out the clear contradiction between their statements that their meetings are non-religious, and their actions of repeatedly invoking God's name and conducting ritual group prayers at every meeting.

    Step 8: We made a list of the voluntary meeting attendees who bored us to tears replaying their drunkalogues, and learned to avoid contact with them.

    Step 9: We maintained the personal dignity of considering ourselves to be healthy and capable of managing our lives, keeping these secret thoughts silent lest the chairperson refuse to sign our Proof of Attendance sheets.

    Step 10: We found occasional meeting where a gracious chairman might sign our Proof of Attendance sheet in advance of the meeting, and offer us the option of leaving immediately, thereby respecting the desires and dignity of all present.

    Step 11: We submitted our Proof of Attendance sheets to our Coercing Authority (as we understand it), even though the verification of these signatures is nearly impossible.

    Step 12: We came to realize as a result of these steps, that coercing people to attend any self-help group meeting is an insult to the voluntary attendees of that group, and is also a violation of the coerced person's constitutional right to freedom of association and religion.

  92. Step 13: Repeat steps 1-12 over, and over AGAIN!!!

  93. I think its wonderful so many people have insight into the cultish derogatory self-serving nature of AA run by narcissistic self-obsessed people. Its is also absolutely wonderful so many people can give up their addictions while maintaining their spirit and free will, with the support of their families and their loved ones! Well done everyone on intellectual analysis, ability to think for ourselves and refusing to have anyone tell us we are worthless!
    To people who need the AA, they only ever were the glassy eyed fanatics and they deserve to continue hating themselves behind closed doors for the rest of their lives in AA- oh yes and keep parroting off those self-destructive 12 steps...

  94. All I want to say is THANK YOU for this post. I HATE AA. I have recovered (not in recovery for the rest of my life) and have never thought sitting in a church basement was recovery. AA is a cult and it is so backwards to any real recovery. I have a friend who is in AA and has finally admitted that she deals with her problems (that AA never tried to solve) by being a workoholic. Fuck AA, just another addiction to cult BS. Sincerely a former addict.

  95. People are really standing up and telling the TRUTH about AA FINALLY. The AA mantra is "fear" that is, you do as your told, or you DIE. Recovery comes before family and friends, that is part of their curriculum, or rather cult tactic.
    I ask this, if the program of AA asks for one thing, for success and that it "demands" its member's, to succumb, to rigorous honesty within themselves. Then does it not make sense, that the members, should demand rigorous honesty, from the prgram of AA??

    So, do some research go online, read the Orange Papers, read about the Cult that started the AA Cult that is, the Oxford Group and read about its founder Revered Buchman and what Buchamnism is also, read letters to friends of Bill Wilson's, written from his wife Lois Wilson and her protests and disgust with Bill Wilson's behavior{s} also, close friends of Bill Wilson whom wrote Lois, protesting Bill's criminal and predatory like behavior{s} From stalking new members, to trying to have the rights of the Big Book, out into his name so he could embezzle all the proceeds, which, were suppose to to AA World Services, to help the cause. {these letter are online} regarding Bill Wilson, womanizing and embezzling funds from AA Also, how Bill Wilson's closest confidants, resigned from AA in its beginning because of how tyrannical and mean Bill Wilson was.

  96. Well, shoot. I've been active in AA since 1975, and no, it is not the only way to achieve sobriety, nor does its literature make that claim, regardless of what hardcore old timers have to say in meetings.

    As for the 12 Steps, there were originally six, and those were co-opted from the lectures of an evangelical preacher from Pennsylvania named Frank Nathan Daniel Buchman who gave a series of lectures entitled The Six Steps Of Moral Perfection in the late 1920s, and who was invited to speak at Oxford. From that, the so-called Oxford Movement began, and one of its adherents, a man named Ebby, brought the Oxford message of recovery to a drunken Bill Wilson, who later co-founded AA based on the Oxford Groups' six steps.

    But even the Oxford movement was not new. In the 1840s, some merchant class citizens and clergy in Baltimore, concerned about drunkeness and its effect on families, founded a nascent recovery effort and called themselves The Washingtonians. They were quite successful in helping thousands of drunks achieve sobriety, until hubris set in.

    The Washingtonians, as did the later Oxford Groups, believed their morality-based recovery methods could cure other social ills as well. The Washingtonians became active in the abolishionist cause (Lincoln was a member) and lost their focus and effectiveness on recovery from alcoholism. The Oxford Groups made the same mistake in requiring adherents to strive for moral perfection in all aspects of their lives, not just in sobering up.

    AAs early members learned from those mistakes. They sensed that AA needed a singleness of purpose, a focus on recovery from alcoholism, and not a scattershot approach to all social ills.

    But they had a different sort of problem with co-founder Bill Wilson. He was salesman and a promoter by nature and had to be disabused of the idea of commercializing AA into building hospitals, recovery centers and other sobriety enteprises. Wilson had even approached John D. Rockefeller about funding his grandiose schemes. After looking at Wilson's proposal, Rockerfeller said,"Money will ruin this thing," and it would have.

    That's why each AA group, according to AA's 12 Traditions, is enjoined from accepting outside contributions or lending the AA name to a recovery facility or any "...outside enterprise lest problems of money, property and prestige divert us from our primary purpose," as stated in Tradition Six. Our primary purpose is to stay and help others, when asked, to achieve sobriety.

    Personally, I don't believe in court ordered attendance, as AA is a religious organization, and I am a hardcore believer in church/state separation.

    AA hairsplitters will be quick to shout that "AA is spiritual not religious!" Nonsense. All the mishmash about "higher power" and "God as we understand Him" in the 12 Steps REEKS of religion, and every meeting ends with a prayer, usually with members holding hands in a circle that resembles a Wiccan ceremony or a witches' coven. Yup, AA is up to its glassy eyeballs in what I call sobriety piety.

    Still, it can be good place to get laid, if you're not too particular, and there is usually free coffee.

    So, if you've court ordered to attend meetings, look at the bright side: free coffee, and maybe you can meet someone sicker than you are.

  97. Buddy, who do you think you are to judge these people and these meetings based on what you dont know or understand. What gives you the right to speak ill of something that i've seen save peoples lives. Do you honestly believe the words that come out of your mouth, or do you just have a bigger issue going on in your life that you choose to simply ignore. Either way your judgement of a program that you dont comprehend is sickening, and just because you dont think that it works doesn't mean it doesn't. Im not or have ever been an alcoholic but I do know some and I've seen this program work. Your cousin, would probably be dead if it wasn't for it, and even though your too high up on your high horse to realise that it may have saved his life give you no right to slam the this. So step back and really think about what you say because you are hurting people that you dont know. People are precious, and if the program helps them to stay an free of alcohol, then what gives you the right to say anything about them.
    People like you make me sick to my stomach...

  98. AA made me want to slit my wrists. I already felt bad enough and lacked self confidence because of my drinking, only to be told I was a retched piece of $hit, full of character defects. luckily with some good therapy and learned coping skills, I don't drink anymore. It is very concerning to me, for those who get beaten down into submission.

    It makes me laugh, that people think it is a disease. If so, where is the pill for Alcoholism?, where is the medical intervention for alcoholism? Your pill is religious rhetoric and funny I can't think of any other disease that type of "medicine" works for! If someone eats themself into type 2 Diabetes and then goes on a diet and loses weight it goes away, you do not call them a diabetic? No Dr would, except maybe that dumb AA one.

    There is no empirical evidence that "alcoholism" is a brain disease, instead of quoting Bill W, show me a scientific article proving so, don't just say look it up. There is also no empirical evidence that AA is effective. Any studies are not accurate and tested, how do you do that in a "annonymous" program. The data shows the majority people recover on their own. Show me that data. You won't find it. AA is not treatment like medicine, there is nothing professional about it and it certainly does not have any credentials.

    There are so many alternatives to AA, if you have a maladaptive behavior with drugs or alcohol, you maybe interested in the following resources:

    Smart Recovery
    Moderation Management
    Woman for Sobriety
    SOS-Save our Selves

  99. What gives him the RIGHT to say what he does about, your CREEPY cult,is called FREEDOM OF SPEECH another constitutional right that is not recognized from AA and you CLEARLY illustrate this oppression. He knows plenty about AA as the rest of us do, i was first hooked up with AA via Dept. of Corrections, when I was just a 19 year old kid and the guy they sent me, had to be the most self righteous "asshole" that I had ever met and I told my Probation officer to get rid of him, or I was going to get another assault charge. You don't send 12 steppers, preaching God to tough street kids,in gangs and that was me back then and I sure as hell did NOT need AA, to overcome a BRUTAL childhood and hard addiction. I am one happy, giving person, loved by many SORRY TO SPOIL YOUR THEORY that is fueled from self righteous, FAR RIGHT WING,EVANGELICAL CHRISTIANITY, not to forget, UTTER QUACKERY. I have attended many many AA meetings over the last 30 years and what I witnessed, was 2 people whom, had major depressive disorders and one 19 year old kid, was told do write out all of his character flaws, in his step 4, while he was episodic with major depression and guess what happened? HE COMMITTED SUICIDE AS ANOTHER POOR PERSON DID WHOM WAS TOLD HE DID NOT NEED MEDICATION, ONLY THE 12 STEPS AND HE WAS FOUND HANGING AT HIS BROTHERS PLACE AND I ALSO REALLY LIKE THIS GUY. That was in 8 MONTHS TWO DEAD. There is a AA pamphlet called ask the Dr.and it openly talks about this problem and confessed that people have in fact taken their lives, due to LUNATIC, CRAZED 12 STEPPERS saying your not sober, if your on any psychotropic medications.

    AA DOES MORE THAN HURT PEOPLE, IT KILLS PEOPLE and I have seen first hand and also, the AA pamphlet of as the Dr. see's it OPENLY talks about this utterly disgusting, and TRAGIC fact about some place that is suppose to help you NOT KILL YOU!!!!!!!!

    Got anything to say, any of you a 12 steppers out there...didn't think so...


  100. There is most definitely a lot of self-obsession in AA. Na is a lot worse. Many in the latter actually think it's rather cool to have been a drug-fucked, mother-robbing, arse-pimping loser. There also those, like the creepy-crawly a few posts north who use these places to get laid. There are lunatics, bitches, thieves, pigs and all kinds of wonderful human insects who 'do the rooms'. BUT keep in mind...IF they're not doing drugs...or drinking...that might just be your daughter, son, father, mother, grandmother, etc who doesn't die at their substance-fucked hands on the road, or in armed-robberies or even on the end of a needle in the 'experimenting stage' of youth.

    There are also some 9-carat gold people in both AA and NA. Most selfless people I have ever met...because they actually DO the steps and they take all of their lives into the process, not just their substance addiction, whatever it may be.

    As for the cult bit. Big deal. What isn't these days?


  101. Hey, I get a wierd feeling from people stating their name and they're an alcoholic everytime they speak, that reaks of brainwashing to me. And the reading from books just to fill the time.
    I am sober for the first time in years, I was court ordered to AA but have been before and was turned off by so many catchphrases and I hate smoke, used to do it, I'm not a recovering smoker, I'm a non-smoker, the same with the alcohol tag.
    I was excited when I found someone that offered to sponsor me, I'm a good sponsee, I really don't care to drink anymore, isn't that the only requirement? No, I was subjected to her telling me she didn't want to "burst my bubble" and to call her when the "pink cloud" wore off, that she's seen people relapse and "it's not pretty", God! What a BITCH!? How dare her try to rob me of my joy of this newly found freedom, seriously, she's sicker than the sickest drunk and just cruel. Hell no, I don't want what she has, I'm a compassionate, caring, encouraging person. Screw her, I'll succeed just to piss her off!
    I talked to a few others trying to find a sponsor or just trying to make new friends, there are definitely some wierdos. I'm thankful to be sober, with no real withdrawal symptoms, no big bad cravings. It's amazing to me how much the addiction was all in my head. Still mad at myself about the waste of it all.
    I really want to help other newcomers, I met a really sweet very excited newly sober woman, I'd hate to see some bully "sponsor" hinder and distract her the way that nutjob did me.
    AA has been very dissappointing, there are some nice folks, but the whole promises crap is crap. I've met maybe generously speaking 8 people out of hundreds that seem to even give a damn that I'm there.
    I need something to help me heel and move on from alcohol abuse, not feel like its hot on my heels for the rest of my life. I've felt worse from the abuse from AA than I could ever have imagined. Oh, I forgot to mention the 78 year old pervert who thinks having sex with him would solve all my problems, yeah, I guess it would 'coz then I would have to shoot myself!Ha! He had the nerve to ask me when the last time my fiancee has made love to me and let me know he'd be thinking of me at around 3AM. Sexual harassment that always makes a girl feel special, what an old fool? I hate him for even thinking about me at all, it just made me feel dirty.I feel stupid for not telling him to just STFU. Excuse the hell out of me for being attractive and in close proximity to his dumbass. When I complained on one of the AAGrapevine forums I was told that I sounded self-centered for referring to myself as attractive, WTF? That damn zealot said nothing about the jackass that victimized me. Are they just sadists or what?
    Sorry if I'm redundant, thank you for the opportunity to voice my pain. If I go to any meetings it will be for moral support of newcomers, I will be much more careful who I let approach me and I will tell everyone what a wierdo that little innocent looking 78 year old man is.
    You've helped alot of people to vent the crap that goes on in AA and reading how many others have bad experiences isn't surprising, I don't think the court order thing is fair at such a fragile transition period.
    Thanks, take care.

  102. Having read through the posts, it is encouraging that people are still able to retain their critical faculties, despite the overbearing attempts of AA in undermining this quality instinctively found within us.

    I feel that it is unfortunate to say the least, that AA is not seemingly capable of giving enough space within its program to allow the individual the opportunity to vent more freely in terms of what they will, and what they will not do or say.

    This seems valid because of the clear shortcomings of AA, which only lead to a form of cognitive dissonance in the individual, except obviously for those who can live with the logical absurdities spoken of by others.

    Probably this tendency was able to permeate AA precisely because AA began essentially as a reform program for sociopaths, who are hard wired for cognitive dissonance. However, people with a fundamental integrity (like the responders on this blog) cannot so easily ignore this problem.

    Maybe one day, groups will be set up for skeptics who can have a good AA rant as Step 1! This may be a more rational basis for things, than beginning with the nonsense of Steps 1-3, which mean that for many of us, AA is over before it even began...

  103. Having read through the posts, it is encouraging that people are still able to retain their critical faculties, despite the overbearing attempts of AA in undermining this quality instinctively found within us.

    I feel that it is unfortunate to say the least, that AA is not seemingly capable of giving enough space within its program to allow the individual the opportunity to vent more freely in terms of what they will, and what they will not do or say.

    This seems valid because of the clear shortcomings of AA, which only lead to a form of cognitive dissonance in the individual, except obviously for those who can live with the logical absurdities spoken of by others.

    Probably this tendency was able to permeate AA precisely because AA began essentially as a reform program for sociopaths, who are hard wired for cognitive dissonance. However, people with a fundamental integrity (like the responders on this blog) cannot so easily ignore this problem.

    Maybe one day, groups will be set up for skeptics who can have a good AA rant as Step 1! This may be a more rational basis for things, than beginning with the nonsense of Steps 1-3, which mean that for many of us, AA is over before it even began...

  104. Sorry, but any program that does good should not be bashed. This program has helped countless of people and taken alot of drunks off the roads. Maybe you should be thankful instead of denigrating and acting so superior.

  105. I hate AA! I think it is ridiculous for anyone to subject themselves for 10, 20 or 30 years to these meetings. My husband is an AA drone. He told me I should never expect for myself or our children to come before AA, ever. He goes to at least one meeting a day usually more and then all kinds of other activities. We are now separated, he cannot commit anytime to our family as hrs too busy with AA.

    Don't even let me get started on Al Anon! Hate isn't even a string enough word! I find it very interesting a group of drunks came up with a group for the "wives" (originally what Al Anon was designed for) that tells them to never interfer with what a drink is doing. Just co-exist and learn to turn the other cheek no matter the consequence the drunks actions cause. WTF really what a clever idea to get drunks to do as they wish and never be held accountable for their actions! I also love that I have a disease because my husband was a drunk, and my disease is life long too. Funny I think a divorce will be a quick cure to my co-dependency!

    This is a cult that goes against family values and teaches addicts they are a special class of people that doesn't need to be responsible like every other mature adult because the once were drunks!

    If I had an illness like cancer and the only thing I did for treatment was go to a cancer support group and got no medical attention people would think I lost myind. Yet alcoholics say that they have a disease, which I believe is true, and get no medical attention?? And the program they use is virtually unchanged since the first quarter of the last century? Have we learned nothing medically since Bill W. and Dr. Bob two unhealhy and unstable men came up with?

    There needs to be real "recovery" and help for addicts, helping them with all their addictions.

  106. Hmmm. From reading the article, the guys who "hate" AA seem really angry people.
    If you don't agree with AA, don't go. Seems such a shame tho that the angry people can't be open minded. It works for some and not others. It's not the only way to stay clean or sober I agree. But if it works for you, thats great.
    Again, you missed the point of AA "teaching". AA is inclusive, not exclusive, doors work both ways. Some people find that their drinking is only a symptom of their illness. If you've only been to a few meetings then I can understand you don't get it. You talk of control, but aren't you a different side of the same coin? It's so sad that you can't live and let live. If someone suffering addiction finds something that works for them, then let them have their choice. None of us are perfect. We can't judge others. Why can't you just accept that aa works for that person, helps to become a better person, turn their lives around, and just let them get on with it? I genuinely wish you all well and hope you find some peace. Hate is a waste of emotion. Life really is too short

  107. I have recently entered an inpatient substance abuse program through the VA. I lost my job, totaled 2 cars (including my brand new, 2012 Dodge Challenger), pissed off and aliented the best girl in my life and wasted more money on alcohol than I care to even think about.

    At this point in my life (I am a mere 26 years of age), I have come to the concrete conclusion that the methods i've attempted to utilize in kicking my alcohol abuse are simply not working. I entered the program voluntarily, and with that they require attendance at 2 AA meetings per week. My thought process going into this experience for the next month is to keep an open mind. As I have said, what I was doing was not working and what is it going to hurt to try the various alternatives this program offers?

    After just one meeting of AA, I understand that they are a highly religiously and spiritually motivated group while I am not. That's ok, because I also understand that for most people, it's not just about finding God or some sort of higher power, but about finding others who have shared similar experiences and knowing there ARE people out there willing to offer you support in getting through your addiction.

    I am aware that there are those groups which bible thump all too often and others that are less orthodox. It's a matter of finding the right group for YOU, and using the resources available to do so. What I realize now is that I need someone who has shared similar experiences as me and can lend support when I feel lost or powerless. There are many people I have crossed paths with in my life, very few of which who were truly committed to listening to me, helping me, or offering any type of support if it meant going out of their way or receiving monetary reward to do so.

    Even if we struggle with addiction, we are still capable of making our own decisions on spirituality or philosophy. I personally will never subscribe to any religion or form of spirituality because I believe in the tangible, the here and the now. What I need is humanity and support from another who can offer emotional and physical support.

    For some, spirituality comforts them and for others emotional support supersedes any strength they could ever receive from a God. Humans are social creatures and require emotional contact to sustain a healthy living.

    While I disagree with the religious philosophy of God, I know there are still benefits of attending meetings. I have discovered that there are others who have suffered as I have and there are people who want to help me. Some would have me find God, others want me to know that they are willing to lend whatever type of support they feasibly can along my journey and avoid religious conflict. I can set aside the principles of spiritually and tinker the program to suit my needs as an individual.

    I think at the core, this is what it's all about. Even though a person may have been sober 12 years, there are MANY who attend not to showboat their sobriety or faith, but rather to emphasize that people are not alone in their struggle. Their continued attendance serves also to reinforce their sobriety and prevent relapse. True, it may become tedious to hear the same stories over and over again, but we has humans are engineered to learn through repetition. Nobody learns to play guitar like Joe Satriani in one day. It takes endless hours of repetition and discipline in order to achieve success, as with any other trade or skill.

    To me, that is what AA is all about. It isn't for everybody and if it doesn't work for you then it doesn't work for you.

    All I can say at this point is I am willing to keep an open mind. I still value and respect the opinions of others because they are entitled to their belief systems. Sometimes I can learn a lot about myself through the differences in others.

    Take care.

  108. If you have to ask you don't get it. If you don't get it you don't get it. There are lots of nice people in AA and there are lots of stupid people in AA just like on this post. People that go to AA get something out of AA. It is only pathetic people who would judge how other people manage their lives. People who can't seem to quit drinking no matter what aren't bothered by having AA branded to their chest. They don't care. They don't care what you think if you don't like them because they know you are probably ignorant to judge what works for people just because it doesn't work for you. I think it is funny that intelligent people are threatened by AA or are arrogant over the so-called idiots that attend AA. I have met some really nice people there and have had more laughs and heartfelt emotions than I can get a lot of places. I go to alternative meetings too and just have to laugh at people that are revolted by AA. The serenity prayer is pretty fine for anyone including all the people on this post. Grant me the serenity to accept the things I cannot change, the courage to change the things I can and the wisdom to know the difference. There will always be people who judge other people and look down on what idiots live in the world beneath them. There is no wisdom in trying to convince those people of anything but what they want to hear.

  109. Great post. I have a love/hate relationship with AA, myself, but it's been helping me learn a few things that might come in handy in due time.
    Everyone is entitled to their opinion, so I don't mind when people say AA is a cult.
    My life is a lot better since I've been in the program, so the results motivate me to continue attending meetings. To each his own!

  110. I really appreciate this blog and so many of the comments. After 8 years of sobriety I am working with a therapist, yes a therapist, to create a plan to leave AA and its dogma. One commenter said it best, "after 14 years you realize even the winners are losers." I'm ready to move on.

  111. I am currently going to meetings and working through the steps. I have had real time in the past(the longest was 2 years and 2 months) so I knew what to do as I had taken an inventory and was making amends to people. Didn't overcome my depression which led to my relapse but eventually overcame it by mantra chanting once I became an ex-Christian(I think that had something to do with it as well because my entire "program" rested on Jesus, remove "Jesus" from the equation and not know my left from my right for a number of years which led to a lot of drinking and resentment towards people in AA who didn't understand what it means to be an ex-Christian who had no identity). Now I simply work the steps without a sponsor which is a weight off of my shoulders. I watch the so called "healthy" people who worship Bill W. and Dr. Bob and treat AA as a cult. Whatever they demand people do, I simply do the opposite(within the confines of what I know works-they demand an inventory be written in black ink, I do it in blue as an example, they demand I have a sponsor or I can't work the steps, I simply work the steps without a sponsor I just quote the 12th tradition and tell people there are people I talk to-which there are if they get nosy about my "sponsor situation" as I am under no obligation to tell them whether I do or don't have one and there is no demand/rule that I ever have one). What really got me was all the times those same sick people would demand that I "forget everything I thought I knew about the program" as I went back out after having real time. How confusing. I suppose that means don't work a fourth step, fifth step, etc etc? Took me a long time to understand that there are so many people in AA who are so full of shit. This blog hit the nail on the head for a lot of people in AA. I plan on getting literature from every "program" as I also use stuff from Rational Recovery(NLP, self talk, etc and found that I need both for my sobriety as NLP by itself doesn't keep the desire away and the steps by themselves don't fix sub concious programming/belief issues necessarily) in conjunction with the steps. I also know better than to tell people in general in meetings how I feel when they drum on and on about their "sick crazy alcoholic thinking" after they have been sober for YEARS. The book does NOT support that bullshit(if a person is free of the desire to drink they no longer have an alcoholic mind and have recovered), they just need a convenient cop out excuse to act like 12 year olds. I'll have no part of that type of drama as I want to act my age and not blame my issues on my "disease".

  112. hi I'm a recovering alcoholic and I did it without is just switching another addiction. If you need support go to a real addiction recovery program that knows what they are doing.not the less drunk leading the currently drunk. I know people who still use drugs but because they don't drink they are sober .what shit. And I a group that are old swingers ..that's all the world needs grandma sex addict.well than you for making me feel like a same person.

  113. You see, where you get it wrong is that AA isn't Christians Anonymous. Most of the AA people have some big thing against organized religion. They resent some part of their history which is usually the Catholic church (seeing that most Catholics are a bunch of drunks anyways). They go around talking about their 'higher power' and whatnot. Their higher power can be a Christian or Jewish God, or it can be a friggin shrine they put up in their back yard or whatever.

    I got to this well-written blog by way of googling "I hate AA people". Because I do. I'm an AA guy myself and while it's kept me from drinking, I loathe most of my fellow AA people for the following reason:
    - Their outright disrespect and down in the mouth attitude towards organized religion. I have my beliefs. You have your beliefs. I don't give a fuck if some nun slapped your wrist one too many times. We're not here to trash organized religion.
    - The brain damaged and otherwise fucked up folks who find their little niche at AA. I don't like low bottoms. I don't identify with them. I don't want anything to do with them. I was never homeless. I never stole from anyone. I don't want to be around these folks, but they're all over AA.
    - I really couldn't give a fuck less about other AA people. I'm here to stay sober, not to keep others sober. I don't want any more besties. I already have them outside of AA, thank you.

    AA is a penalty you pay for fucking up. That's all it is. You have to spend hours each month at AA in order to not fuck up more. It works, but it sucks. However, it sucks less than a DUI, jail and other shit that comes with alcoholic drinking. I'll choose the option that sucks less. Fuck...

  114. I googled why do I hate AA and found this funny blog post and read all the comments as well. I had a hard time not having my 1-2 glasses of chardonnay everyday so my therapist convinced me to join AA. Ugh. I was desperate to get out of the depression that plagued me and since, as she said, wine is a depressant, I figured I'd go to AA like she told me to. Ugh Ugh! Ironically, I had gotten a boyfriend of mine in 1988 to join as he was a sever alcoholic and needed help. I knew we couldn't continue in a relationship if he was always violently drunk, so it really worked for him. He's sober to this day! BUT when I joined, I was introduced to this lovely 20-something who was to be my sponsor. Now a year in, I'm still sober but more bcuz of a choice I made daily rather than the meetings. I resent having to take orders from this young girl who is a veritable Nazi when when it comes to dishing them out. I didn't sign up to have orders barked out at me. It's ridiculous. I'm constantly asked if I'm making my 4 meetings every week, if I'm calling newcomers (ugh), if I'm calling sponsors, if I'm attending dances, the list goes on. And the manner in which she speaks to me is condescending. I gess it works for some folks, but I don't respond well to that manner, nor do I really need it like some people might I guess. I suppose it's time for me to find an older, more patient sponsor. But I'll tell you, sponsoring and spreading the message to me smacks a little cultish. THAT I am really struggling with. Speaking to rehabs and such I enjoy immensely as I see how much that helps people who are struggling so much. So there is some good and bad to AA. I am just not as enthus'd it seems as my peers there. Sigh. One day at a time, as they say. :)

  115. This guy is ignorant and quite funny lol. I'm a recovering heroin addict. The reason im recovering is because it's a mental problem, one drink, drug etc and im shooting up again. That's why it's not ex... You will always have that addict in you, you can be an addict without ever touching a drug.

    1. Sorry but if your still obssessing over the drug then YOU are an addict, but honestly the obssession really DOES go away. They tell you that crap just because they want you to stay part of their cult. Most heroin addicts take 5ish years to feel that way. Then you'll leave and they'll tell everyone you relapsed as if you went and died LOL

  116. I would like to say this. You don't know a God Damn thing about Alcoholics Anonymous and either does most of the people that attend AA actually. That stupid shit, "My name is Joe Blow and I'm an Alacoholic" was brought in to AA by newcomers from the outside treatment facilities. You see, you have two AA's, you have the fellowship of AA and the program of AA.

    If you weren't such a moron, you would know what "Once an alcoholic always an alcoholic" really means. What we have is the disease of alcoholism and you can never be cured of it, but it can be arrested. We are physically allergic to alcohol. Our bodies can't process the acetates with a sufficient quantity or quality of enzymes produced by the pancreases and liver and the acetates are what produces the physical craving for more and more alcohol. The suggestion would be to put it down and keep it down right? There is a problem with that. That would work if the disease was only a physical disease but it has mental components as well. In addition to a physical craving, we have a mental obsession. Our minds tell us we can drink again, even after we lose our families, jobs, houses, etc.

    When they refer to powerless (less meaning none) they are saying that we are completely incapable of staying sober on our own will power. That why you went to AA in the first place knucklehead, remember?

    Page 44 in the Big Book states, "when you find you cannot quit entirely, or if when drinking you have little control over the amount you take, you are probably alcoholic. If that be the case, you may be suffering from an illness which only a spiritual experience will conquer."

    Note: "If that be the case, you may be suffering from an illness which "ONLY" a spiritual experience will conquer." ONLY, get it?

    You don't like AA because your not done drinking, thats all, nothing more. Evidence by your cute little statement that ends your little tirade, "Goddammit, I need a drink"

    You're only fooling your own dumbass. You may like this program or you may not but it works and it your only chance to recover.

    There are two ways you can look at the word rationalize. Rationalize/rational lies. something to think about.

    1. Bible thumper alert, buddy I went to AA for a year and drink once every 1 to 2 months, maybe a half beer or 1 wine (usually i leave it empty). That crap is just an excuse for people who have 0 self control to not be judged by the rest of society. So that when u relapse and go on a binge you can still get help because it was all the diseases fault. Get some responsibility and stop blaming it on the disease. You know that physically your brain looks like a normal persons 6 months after you stop right? So you actually ARE cured, your just mentally fcked.

  117. I started going to an AA meeting a few months ago (Back to Basics in Richmond Hill). I have never been around such self-absorbed people in my entire life. I haven't' been to other groups but if they are all like this, than this thing is really terrible and they are screwing with peoples lives. I've seen newcomers come in there in pretty rough shape hoping to get some help, but never get any and never return after a meeting or two. These long time members who are "supposed to carry the message to the alcoholic who still suffers" are way too busy socialising amongst themselves in their cliques. Their meeting is more like a social club and their open meeting is basically a mini dinner with lots off snacks where they host people from other groups to show off how great they are and how great their meeting is while the person who is there at his first meeting and is desperate for help never receives any and just leaves and never returns. I've seen this week after week. Somehow I've managed to stick around here for a couple months with these selfish people, but they are so unwelcoming that I have decided to leave. I don't want to be like them.

  118. I have been involved with AA over 25 years. My "continuous" sobriety has been 1 year and them 14 years. At 13 years after being involved and entrenched in the "program: I felt more suicidal and hopeless than ever. At 14 yrs in I looked back over my life and realized I was in the same spot I was in 14 years prior. The only thing that was different was I hadn't had a drink. I started to feel crazy, suicidal and more depressed than ever. The "winners" were not people I wanted to emulate as they had a multitude of neuroses that were not being addressed. I found over time that the "old timers", of which I was slowly becoming, had nothing I wanted....period. They were either entrenched in their insanity or another addiction or affliction. I wanted solutions and tangible results.

  119. I have not had a drink for over 5 years. I quit on my own, I spent time with a woman who had not had a drink in 20+ years when I stopped but I didn't feel compelled to drink. I just needed to stop. She was heavily involved in AA in her earily years and then stopped going. After 10 years she felt like something was missing in her life and she has returned to AA to fill the "void". I'm not sure it had anything to do with her feeling compelled to drink again - she just felt a void - those were her words. I have not had any contact with this woman for over a year and a half. Our son's go to school together and my ex is a slippery bastard who likes to use other people as pawns in messing with my time with my kids. I asked this woman who I had not had contact with for so long, that she talk with me before informing my son and his father that he is going to the lake house. I want my son to have friends and going to the lake is great but what if I had something planned? It sets him up for disappointment. I asked her to talk to me. She went on a rant and spouted "You should go to AA so you can figure out that all of your problems are your fault"? WTF???? She doesn't know anything about me - unless it is from gossiping with my ex's new wife. That is why I looked for this site. It all makes so much sense now. Lee

  120. A friend of mine for 20 years whom I also work with-like 8 feet away most days began AA 5 months ago. She was difficult to get along with and everybody in the office (large office, nearly 100 people) knew she had issues and tried to avoid her. She was angry, jealous, you name it. Most of us knew she had a drinking problem because we had seen it first hand at company parties etc. So she began AA and it did seem to calm her somewhat and she did profess to stop drinking and does appear to be generally better. She goes to "a Christian AA" at the church I have gone to for 30 years and I do believe it has helped her tremendously and I see the difference. I am a Christian and personally know of Gods' Grace and believe he can heal anyone of anything if they ask him. My problem is this and it has been touched on by many of you in various ways. She's now totally addicted to the meetings and can communicate only in what I have called for a long time 'support group speak'. She has been in and out of these groups for decades for emotional issues with all her 'hurts, habits and hang-ups'. See, now I'm doing it.
    Her psychiatrist committed suicide and this was the person she thought was going to fix her life. My impression of most of these organizations is that these people are dysfunctional on a level that I cannot understand. The constant communication and need for approval is overwhelming. I am very glad she has apparently stopped drinking but her almost giddy and self-righteous, over the top demeanor combined with the non-stop 24/7 preaching is making some wish she would start again. We don't like being around either of these people. She constantly points out how calm she is now and and is on the phone during work over an hour a day with her sponsor telling this person every move she made and every thought she had since their last conversation 12 hours ago. She has a hearing loss and speaks loudly, so the rest of us are usually within earshot and it's driving us a little batty. Is this the normal course for the new AA person?

  121. I went to AA for six months - I quit drinking - and not because I was helpless over alcohol - mostly because I wanted to - the God of my Understanding would never, ever render me helpless- would never ask me to confess my past indiscretions to a lay person - would never ask me to turn my will and life over to him - would never, ever ask me to NOT be accountable for what I did and what I did to people - would never ask me to lie, cheat and steal and then lie about it again in meetings - would never gossip and then make up whatever I needed to in order to pad my ego - would never take such relish in describing going to jail, committing a felony or most of all destroying my family - would also never tell me that I had to go to meetings and that my AA "family" was more important than my own family - and most of all, never admit or allow any kind of criticism about the narcissistic, insane, womanizer who wrote their Holy Grail - read about Bill W, it will blow your mind - AA is evil - it lacks depth - it forbids one to think and understand why they drink - and it creates horrible, horrible inbred community who is over all dishonest and breaks the fabric of our society -

  122. No sense trying to explain something to someone completely committed to misunderstanding! Folks always bash & loathe what they fear & don't understand. It all might be valid if it were being stated from a point if actual education rather than a simple personal opinion which, although your ego may insist is fact, but it's just not.. It's just an opinion & you know what they say about opinions!😉

    1. An old saying among many. "for those who understand no explaination is needed,for those who do not understand,or refuse to understand,no explaination will ever be sifficient.

  123. After 28 years sober it doesn't matter to me whether I identify myself as a "recovering alcoholic" or a "grateful recovering alcoholic". It doesn't have anything to do with how long I've been continuously sober, it depends on whether I still have addictive thinking that colors "all of my affairs". I quit drinking, gambling, and smoking, but not overeating, all examples of my addictive personality, which is what 'I'm an alcoholic' indicates for me. I pick up new addictions that didn't used to have a name, such as the internet or social media groups. And that isn't because I used to drink and do drugs a long time ago, it is because I'm prone to create addictions in any area of my habits which are not practiced in balance = moderation. I think the core cause of addiction is a spiritual hole, such as a lack of honesty, which can never be completely filled, Progress not Perfection.

  124. I love this post....its a totally accurate assessment of AA and its followers. I've tagged along to several with my friend who is a leader in the group...and as they all chant, I keep having the urge to scream "toughen up buttercups!"... But I keep it to myself. They all exchange one damaging crutch/weakness for another. Its their personalities...the core of who they are that makes them needy, gullable and weak. BUT, I will say....if AA is the most successful way to get people to stop destroying their lives, health and families, so be it. Yes, its a skewed dysfunctional cult that brain washes its members....but it beats what they were doing before they joined. I'm grateful my head is on straight, my compass works, and I respect the body and mind I was given...I wish everyone the same. Good luck out there everybody!!
    Life isn't a dress rehearsal,

  125. AA can help anyone quit or moderate their drinking. Just think to yourself "If I fuk up, I'll end up at meetings listening to that bullshit." That should do it.

  126. As someone who had to go to rehab and forced to do that shit. I can vouche that it's not a disease, AA gives their members excuses like "if you drink you'll die". I had to go to rehab and WAS an alcoholic, I was in AA for about one year; now its been 2 years and guess what, I have a glass of wine maybe once a month if not even that. It doesn't look like I'm going on insane binges, the hardest part about leaving is how you think those people are your friends but theyre so brainwashed that they say "we're praying for you" and "we worry for you". It's like man, I have my life back together and your praying for me? Then after I tell my story they act like I went on a binge and commited a huge massacre lol.

  127. LMFAO, I like how all the steppers are the ones saying the weirdest most messed up crap here.

  128. Yes, yes, YES!!!!!

  129. 'Are you trying to be Jesus here' 😂 Jesus does not say my way or the high way. Jesus is the WAY

  130. I would go to an I hate AA meetings meeting!
    Greta blog

  131. this was good. I was in AA for a long time and finally left and got on with my life. Since leaving AA my life has gotten much better. AA is not the best solution for most people.

  132. Reading the comments here by AA supporters, there's now way in hell I EVER "want what you have." I've never seen a more sanctimonious bunch of slogan-spewing Bill-bots in my life.

  133. I've been in this program a year and a half, originally court ordered to go cause of a DUI. I'm 63. I now sit in meetings with my arms crossed, rarely "share", it's all the same repetitive demeaning bullshit, but last week I did say I hadn't yet resolved the issue of what do you do with the past wreckage of your life (that was the topic). They pounced on me like flies on crap, saying I was holding onto resentments and blaming other people for my own "defects". I left the meeting in tears and a couple people aren't talking to me. I hate their shaming, their labeling, their "you must think and agree with our assessment of you" bullshit. I'm on my way out the door...I can see the writing on the wall. Funny, every meeting I attend is always the same tired topics, never gets beyond the 3rd step, is anyone around who gets beyond the 3rd step? I have never attended a meeting where a 9th or 10th step is discussed. Maybe nobody lasts that long.

  134. I just found this blog and lover it. I am not an alcoholic, I am a person who made a poor decision one day and got a DUI. Can you imagine a human being making a poor decision. I take full responsibility for my actions and will suffer through the remaining time I have in mandatory weekly group meetings and 2 weekly court mandated AA meetings. I find AA to be an absolutely oppressive, depressing, self-loathing, self hating environment and each and every time I attend one I leave shaking my head. I get so tired of hearing the same old stories from the same angry people, but they tell you in AA if you give your life up to God your anger and resentments will be taken away, along with your financial worries, etc, etc. Well I don't know about anyone else but good old God hasn't written any checks for my bills, how about you? The more of the meetings I am required to attend the more irritated I get. Even though they claim to be non-religious, it's a cult as I see it and it's members are told that AA is the only place they will ever fit in and feel comfortable. What a load of crap. All AA does is allow people to blame their bad decisions on alcohol and label themselves as "SICK" to justify treating other people like shit and sit in judgement of those who can think for themselves and choose to move on from the past rather than wallow with them on a daily basis. AA NOT A BIG FAN. Someone should tell these people to build a bridge and get the fuck over it.

  135. i'm an alcoholic, 17 yrs sober,i like aa, don't know god, have no higher power, i help and support people trying to get sober, i couldn't care less what they want or not to believe. there is all sorts of folks in the rooms, from wonderful to complete fuckwits, there are many opinions,egos,control freaks,perverts and kind loving human beings, a real mixed's not remotely close to perfect but it's there and many find real help. thanks.

  136. I like your words: cult nazi bastards. You will find some kind people, but all too many, "drink from the same trough" of water. I was sober longer than many people in that program are, and I never wore it on my shirtsleeves. I didn't "collect chips," and I didn't put people down under the "guise/oxymorn" of "tough love" or "only trying to help you, bullshit. People that need to get their rocks off by feeling that they are better or above others, and to go the extra step of actually kicking sand in their faces, are repulsive, compassion-less human being that merit your statement/label: "cult nazi bastards." A couple are fortunate that I didn't punch their lights out. I practiced restraint and assertiveness.

  137. I have been sober going on 23 years. I attended individual therapy, aa meetings and church. Early in my recovery i witnessed an oldtimer with 30 years sobriety knock down and kick our puny town drunk. Ive also seen his sponsees kneel down and kiss his ring. Our trusted servent broke into our recovery house and stole our money. My friend who has been trying to get sober told me another oldtimer took advantage of her sexually. When i was newly sober i buried 13 family members in 3 years, yet my phone didnt ring for 2 years, no one in aa called and reached out and offered me any support at all. Ive been sober 22 years now. Early in my sobriety i bought the big book and the 12 and 12, I took their advuce I took what i needed to recover which was my higher power and left the rest which was all those sick bastards that took everyone elses inventory except their own. Still all i hear is gossip and about my past. Who needs that ? I cleaned up my act a long time ago, bought my own home, paid for my own car, raised my kids with my own money and was the best parent i could possibly be. I dont associate myself with ANY program people. I hope not every AA groups are the same in the community as it is in mine. I am grateful that i found the 12 steps but The members in my community are really messed up mentally. Even most of the oldtimers. I put a lot of effort into staying sober on my own because of all those shady people. I live a quiet solitude life, lonely at times, but its better then getting caught up in all that back stabbing character assination. AA is not for everyone, there are as many ways to stay sober as there are people in the rooms. Find your higher power and he, she , it, will do for you what you cannot do for yourself. I hope not every AA community is like mine. Peace be with you.