I found something out today

KexMex made a thread. That’s something you don’t see everyday. All right, most of you might know I don’t say much, and when I do, it’s never anything really important anyway…

My father lives in Stockholm, and I don’t. My parents are not divorced, he’s simply there because of his job. Some weekends, he gets time to come home for a visit. When he does so, he seems happy enough. Today, he took me aside and explained to me that he is attending Alcoholics Anonymous meetings. Apparently, he has a drinking problem.

I was stunned. I didn’t even have any idea he drunk too much. I thought that if he did, there would at least be a tiny hint when he came home, but nothing.

I dunno if I should feel stupid for not noticing. I’m still happy he goes there to deal with it, though, obviously.

I’d like to ask, is there anyone here who can explain what they do on these meetings?

On AA meetings they have a kind of “suppot” group. These people come together in a set schedule and talk to eachother about various things. They also support eachother to not drink.

Not just alcoholics. THey welcome people whose lives are affected by alcoholics, too. my mom went to it for years for support while my dad was still drinking, until he finally managed to break it. He’s been clean for almost 15 years now.

The point of the group is that the only one who can understand, and thus comfort, somone struggling to stay sober is someone else who is also struggling to stay sober. People go and talk about their thoughts and feelings, and other alcoholics try to help them understand what’s going on in their heads, and tell them its normal and give them advice on how to deal with it. If that makes sense. Sometimes one person will spend the whole session giving a speech about their entire journey from alcoholic hell to recovery.

I’ve been to my fair share and to tell you the truth I never really liked them that much, but they work for a ridiculous amount of people.

Congrats on your Dad recovering. No matter what else happens in his life, it’ll be better because he’s not drinking.

Not just alcoholics. THey welcome people whose lives are affected by alcoholics, too.

This is actually a different group, called ‘Al-Anon’(don’t ask me why they just decided to abbreviate the name). Though most AA groups will let almost anyone to sit at a meeting as long as they’re not just there to make fun.

There’s pretty much addiction groups for everything: Narcotics anonymous, Cocaine Anonymous, Eater’s Anonymous, etc.

The site has plenty of pdfs, though I don’t know if any of those contains what you’re asking for. If you feel like it, you could go to an AA meeting in your town.

Anyone May Attend A.A. Open Meetings
Anyone may attend open meetings of A.A. These usually consist of talks by a leader and two or three speakers who share experience as it relates to their alcoholism and their recovery in A.A. Some meetings are held for the specific purpose of informing the nonalcoholic public about A.A. Doctors, members of the clergy, and public officials are invited. Closed discussion meetings are for alcoholics only.

I once went to an AA meeting with the rest of my Sunday school class. Or maybe Cub Scouts. Yeah, Cub Scouts. I can’t really remember anything about it because my age was in the single-digits at the time, and my mom took me out of the group upon seeing how … “para-military” it was, in her words.

Careful with AA. From secondhand experience, I know that they teach you need lifetime support, so you end up replacing one dependency with another. Whether you think it’s a more benign one is up to you.

I am also not a fan of the step requiring you to swear belief in a higher power, of course. Oh, they try to be tricky and say it doesn’t have to be God, but come on.

I know someone who’s been in the program over 20 years, and although this person does not now drink, the dependency on the program is evident in several sad ways.

We really need to normalize the use of some sort of neuter pronoun in English.

The point to AA is to produce a form of structure around the lives of the people who have addiction issues (in this case being alcohol, but it applies to everything). Addictions hold a very powerful sway on people and while I don’t completely agree with the system AA has in place, from my understanding of how people work and think and how addictions work, I’d be hard pressed to find a better system.

For example, the point about giving yourself up to a higher power is to have the person confront the fact that he or she is incontinent and accept it. Its not reasonable to expect these people to just keep trying to handle things themselves and think they can do it. If they could, they wouldn’t be addicts.

While you can argue you may be replacing 1 dependency over another, I don’t think that’s a relevant point. What matters is whether or not the person if fucking up their lives and the lives of people around them. You can’t just cure addicts of addiction. The people who run these programs have at least 1 thing right: once an addict, always an addict.

So when Kex’ dad said he was an alcoholic, he may or may not have been sober for a long period of time. He recognizes and has to recognize that he will always be an alcoholic regardless of what he does. He recognizes that all it takes is 1 drink. Try not to be too judgmental of that because that’s a pretty hard thing to do. The reason he talked to Kex about it is because it is part of the program to discuss the issue with people as a means of dealing with your problem and also to discuss with the people whom you have affected with your addiction to tie up loose ends and confront the consequences of your actions.