The Complete Guide to Choosing AA Meetings: Everything to Know

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Choosing AA Meetings

Did you know that by attending AA meetings it is possible to get treatment for alcoholism by building healthy friendships with people who care for you and who will support you if you happen to have a relapse?

It is extremely brave to make the choice to seek treatment for alcoholism. By attending AA meetings, you will have support for staying connected to your sobriety.

But it is important to join an AA meeting that is right for your unique needs. This is why it is so helpful to know how to choose the best AA meetings. We’ve written a guide to help you out. Keep reading to find out more.

What Is an AA Meeting?

The goal of Alcoholics Anonymous meetings is to bring people together who want to stop abusing alcohol and who are ready to commit themselves to achieving long-standing recovery.

Many people who attend these meetings have been sober for many years. You will also meet others who are still struggling to stop drinking.

There are no rules or requirements for who can participate in AA meetings. All that matters is that you desire to overcome your addiction and start living a more healthy lifestyle.

Everybody who attends AA meetings can offer and receive support, learn new information about what it takes to start recovering from addictions, and develop new friendships.

It is also common for family members of alcoholics to attend Al Anon meetings. Al Anon support groups are designed to help younger people who are living with alcoholics.

Different Types of In Person AA Meetings

Different AA groups have different formats. Therefore, it is important to choose a meeting that is right for your circumstances and needs.

Here are the different types of AA meetings that you should consider attending if you want to get treatment for alcohol abuse.

Open Meetings

Anybody who wants to observe how an AA meeting functions can attend AA open meetings.

The only people who are allowed to speak at these meetings are those who are seeking treatment for alcoholism.

But it is common for family members, friends, medical professionals, and members of the local community members to attend open AA meetings.

Closed Meetings

If you want to meet with other recovering alcoholics in a more private setting, you should consider attending closed AA meetings.

These meetings are only open to members who participate. Closed AA meetings create an environment that is safe and supportive.

Many NA meetings tend to be closed meetings rather than open meetings. This can help recovering addicts feel more comfortable to share about their experiences with drug abuse.

Topic and Discussion Meetings

Topic and discussion meetings involve meeting with other recovering alcoholics and community members to discuss specific topics that do not necessarily relate to alcohol abuse.

One of the most important goals of these meetings is to help attendees to understand their circumstances in a new light.

Speaker Meetings

These meetings feature speakers and presenters who have overcome their alcohol addictions. Speakers tend to have extensive personal experience and inspirational wisdom.

Speakers will share their insights and stories with the intention of helping other meeting attendees to navigate the challenges related to overcoming alcohol abuse.

Panel Presentations

During panel presentations, AA groups will choose various members to speak in front of several healthcare professionals. The purpose of doing this is to inform them about the program.

Literature Discussions

This kind of AA meeting is for people who want to discuss the text of Alcoholics Anonymous. If you attend a literature discussion, you will probably be talking about The Big Book by Bill W.

This book describes the process of recovery and explains why AA programs are so valuable.

Question and Answer

People who attend this type of meeting are free to ask the group coordinator any questions that they have. It is common for attendees to write their questions on slips of paper for the group leader to respond to.

Online Alcoholics Anonymous Meetings

There are many organizations that organize online meetings. People who don’t have the motivation, time, or ability to join in-person meetings can attend online AA meetings.

These types of meetings take place in private chat rooms. Therefore, it is not necessary for participants to leave their homes.

What to Expect from AA Meetings

Most Alcoholics Anonymous meetings have informal and welcoming atmospheres.

You can arrive at any time during a meeting, but it is important to not disrupt the discussion.

You might be given a topic to discuss. You will also have the opportunity to talk about your issues, share stories, or express your concerns.

Everybody who attends an AA meeting is welcome to speak. But you are not required to do so.

How Anonymous Are Alcoholics Anonymous Meetings?

It can be difficult to attend an AA meeting for the first time if you’re not used to talking about alcoholism in front of other people. This is why anonymity is one of the main goals during AA meetings.

Members are not allowed to reveal the identities of other attendees. When you attend an AA meeting you can share your perspectives and feelings, but you are never required to do so.

Choosing AA Meetings: Understand Your Options

If you are seeking treatment for alcoholism, it is a great idea to start attending AA meetings. The most common types of AA meetings are open meetings, closed meetings, and topic/discussion meetings.

Are you looking for an AA meeting to attend in Illinois? If so, don’t hesitate to visit our AA meetings page to find out the various AA meetings that take place in your area.

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