Al-Anon is a network of family support groups, which helps persons whose families are affected by alcoholism. This kind of a support group is after assisting people overcome their addiction to alcohol.
Many alcoholics have overcome this condition thanks to the help they get from Al-Anon which is a support group that started in 1951. Al-Anon was founded by Lois Wilson, also called Lois W, 16 years after her husband founded Alcoholics Anonymous (AA). She herself faced the challenge of supporting a convalescent alcoholic, so, she created an organization aimed at people with the same problem. Al-Anon is an organization self-supported through member donations. There are meetings available through the assistance of family members and friends of alcoholics to cope with and better serve the interests of their loved ones even if they are in different stages of recovery.
Providing support to family members by making them understand that they are not alone in this struggle is the primary focus of Al-Anon.
Alcoholism Being A Family Illness
Al-Anon considers the problem of alcoholism as a family illness because of the negative impact it has both on the alcoholic and the people surrounding them. 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. Support meetings can help deal about these issues in the best way while also making members understand that alcoholism should be treated as a family illness.
Alateen Is Al-Anon For Teenagers
Besides, Al-Anon has a group named Alateen organized specially for young people whose family member suffers from alcoholism.
During the Al-teen meetings, the youth meet with their peers and share experiences and support each other at their level.
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. All members have worked through some issues though the details may differ. The main benefit of Al-Anon is having an opportunity to find and talk with individuals who's had similar experiences. There are Al-Anon meetings all across the nation. Phone us on 0800 772 3971 , and we'll help you find the one near you.
What Happens During The Meetings
Al-Anon gatherings are friends and family members of alcoholic addicts. If you are worried about somebody's heavy drinking or if the drunkard's lifestyle somehow affects your life , Al-Anon will help you.
The outcomes of these meetings is what scares some people from coming. When thinking of attending a meeting, some things should be kept in mind:
Al-Anon is anonymous meaning you do not identify yourself in the meeting
Everybody present in each meeting has faced the problem of alcoholism, either personally or has a family member suffering from it
While members are encouraged to speak up and discuss their problem, they are under no obligation to do so
The Meetings Usually Vary
Some could be more productive for you than the others.
This group is not affiliated to any religion
Meetings are focused on Al-Anon 12 step program
Al -Anon meetings permit attendees to "take what they like and leave the rest", being conducted under a mantra. The shared stories, of experiences, hardships, and victories encourages members to know how to handle their experiences.
As a rule, group meetings begin with reading of Al Anon 12 Step program. The Alcoholics Anonymous started the 12 step recovery program that is being used in the Al-Anon meetings. 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 the following:
We admitted we were powerless over alcohol that our lives had become unmanageable.
This is the point where alcoholism recognised as a conditioner that has affected them all.
Came to believe that a power greater than ourselves could restore us to sanity.
Members often drive themselves to the brink in an attempt to change or control their loved one.
They understand to accept that they can revert to sanity, after acknowledging they are powerless.
Made a resolution to turn our lives and our will over to the care of God in a way we perceived Him.
It is important that members learn to let go.
Made a searching and fearless moral inventory of ourselves.
This is where the journey of self-discovery begins.
The group members write down a list of the instances when they may have been unfair to themselves or their significant others (for example, threats).
Admitted to God, to ourselves, and to another human being the exact nature of our wrong doings.
Then follows going through the list one item at a time and dealing with each.
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.
Members are assisted by this part of the 12 Steps to understand how they may have been dominating or judgmental toward an addict and how that is counterproductive.
Drew up a list of all people we had harmed, and became willing to right a wrong for them all.
Very often, righting a wrong starts with yourself.
Sometimes it not always your fault a person is addicted.
They must be willing and prepared to forgive themselves and to make amends.
Made amends to such people directly where feasible, except for the cases when doing so is likely to hurt them or others.
When you decide to make amends, Then follows the action of doing so.
Continued to take personal inventory and when we were wrong promptly admitted it.
Passing through these twelve Steps is a time-consuming process.
Members are ready with an inventory, yet making an error is common.
Step 10 identifies this is an ongoing process.
Through prayer and meditation endeavoured to improve our conscious contact with God as we perceived Him, praying only for learning His will for us and the strength to do it.
This is a step that is personal and spiritual to encompass acceptance and comfort amid the stress of recovery.
Having experienced a spiritual awakening thanks to these steps, we tried to spread the word to other people, and to always practice these principles.
The last step is a realization that the journey of the member is not over.
After this, group members are encouraged to support others by sharing what they have already learned.
Knowledge Of Higher Power
Although Al-Anon's program is not a religious one, members do experience insights into higher power. Nevertheless, the term " higher power" is open to imply as one's own individual 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.