A family of support groups for people that have been affected by the problem of alcoholism within their family is identified as Al-Anon. These gatherings provided much-needed support and healing.
Al-Anon was founded in 1951 as an organization for providing support to friends and relatives of drunkards. This organization was founded by Lois Wilson, who is also popular by the name of Lois W and Al Anon came into being 16 years after the formation of Alcoholics Anonymous [AA] by her husband. She formed an organization for people similar to her, after confronting the hardships of assisting a recovering alcoholic in her own life. Al-Anon thrives through the contributions of its members. Support groups meetings help alcoholics' family members and friends to cope with the situation and treat their loved ones better, even if they haven't recovered yet.
The fight against alcoholism is a joint undertaking and that is the objective of this support group.
Alcoholism Affecting The Whole Family
Al-Anon recognizes that alcoholism affects everyone in the family not just the addicted member. It is integral for the alcoholic's recovery to have a family and friend support system around them.
Many family members are known to blame themselves for the drinking problem of their loved one, and in many cases do not understand why the recovery of their loved one is a priority. These problems are handled by meetings and members are assisted to understand alcoholism as a family illness.
Alateen- Al-Anon For Teenagers
Teens are also affected by alcoholism and that is why Alateen was formed within Al-Anon to help them.
Young people are permitted to meet with others of their own age at these meetings, making the experiences more similar and advantageous.
Why Join An Al-Anon Group
Members of Al-Anon benefit from being introduced to a number of people and families who could have suffered from the problem of alcoholism. Despite every individual being different Al-Anon commonly had interrelated experiences within their struggles. The main benefit of Al-Anon is having an opportunity to find and talk with individuals who's had similar experiences. Al-Anon meetings are held all over the country. Call us on 0800 772 3971 to help you find one near you.
What You Should Anticipate From A Meeting
Al-Anon meetings are open for anybody who is affected by someone else's drinking habit. If you are worried about somebody's heavy drinking or if the drunkard's lifestyle somehow affects your life , Al-Anon will help you.
A number of people are not certain about what they can expect and are therefore, hesitant to attend their first meeting. When thinking of attending a meeting, some things should be kept in mind:
Al-Anon is a group that is unidentified
Everybody present in each meeting has faced the problem of alcoholism, either personally or has a family member suffering from it
You are not forced to talk or discuss your issues though it is encouraged
There Are Several Kinds Of Meetings
Some may be more beneficial for you than others.
Al-Anon is not based on any religion
Meetings are focused on Al-Anon 12 step program
Going to the meeting means that you accept the fact that there are matters discussed that will be of help to you or not. Thus, meetings put an increased focus on talking about experiences and hardships rather than telling attendees what to do.
The recovery stages are outlined before the meeting starts. These 12 steps have been adapted from a similar program which is also implemented by Alcoholics Anonymous. Similarly to AA, Al-Anon members rely on a facilitator who guides them through the steps and who is always ready to support when the going gets tough. These steps are:
We did admit we were powerless over alcoholism, that our lives became unmanageable indeed.
Members learn to accept alcoholism as a disease they cannot control in others.
Came to believe that a Power greater than ourselves could restore us to sanity.
Trying to change a person that has been affected by alcoholism can be a huge task and lead to breakdown.
The members then recognise the fact that there is a solution out there for them.
Made a decision to turn our will and our lives over to the care of God as we understood Him.
Accepting the condition and seeking help is the best way of solving it.
Made a searching and a fearless moral inventory of ourselves.
Self-discovery is an essential component of the steps, and this is the start of that.
A list of how they may have offended themselves or their loved ones (such as with threats) is made by attendees.
Have admitted to God, to ourselves, and to another human being the true cause of our wrong doings.
Thats a study of each listing in the group members moral inventory, which enables them to delve into each problem.
Were entirely ready to have God remove all these defects of character.
Spiritual help is recognised as one way through which they can be helped.
Humbly asked Him to remove our shortcomings.
This part of the twelve step process helps people realize how controlling or judgmental they have been towards an alcoholic and how counterproductive it is.
Made a list of all persons we had harmed, and became willing to make amends to them all.
The road to recovery is a personal effort.
Sometimes it not always your fault a person is addicted.
They must learn to forgive and make it right for themselves.
Made direct amends to such people wherever possible unless to do so would injure them or others.
As soon as you are ready to make amends, the next step is actually to do it.
Continued to take personal inventory and when we were wrong promptly admitted it.
It takes some period before you can complete the stages.
Slipping up is quite normal despite members already having made an inventory.
Step 10 makes this clear that the process takes long.
Through prayer and meditation endeavoured to improve our conscious contact with God as we perceived Him, praying only for learning His will for us and the strength to do it.
Self acceptance is the major key to all the stages of recovery.
Having had a spiritual awakening as the result of these steps, we tried to carry this message to others, and to practice these principles in all our affairs.
This stage appreciates the fact that the process is long and doesnt end after a while.
They are encouraged with support to use what they have learned to assist others.
What Is Higher Power
Members of Al-Anon believe there is a "higher power' greater than themselves even though the group is not affiliated with any religion. However, the notion of "higher power" can be interpreted depending on one's personal beliefs. Al-Anon is open to members of all religions and beliefs and accepts them with a commitment that no one will be forced to alter his or her belief.