It may seem like I’m anti-AA. That’s not true. I prefer to consider myself pro-choice when it comes to treating alcoholism. I owe my life to AA, but that puts me in a very small and very lucky minority. What so many alcoholics don’t know is that there are other options when it comes to treatment. I don’t regret joining AA, but 14 years of it, I now believe, may have been unnecessary. We need to look at why, when our fellowship’s success rate is apparently so low, it still dominates the public discourse on alcoholism and recovery.
The media’s near universal uncritical endorsement of AA may be a factor in this, although things are gradually beginning to change thanks to the power of the internet. It’s never been so easy for people with shared interests to connect, and many bloggers and online activists are working to promote progressive secular options in recovery. I’d encourage anyone with an alcohol problem to try AA, but also to spend time researching the secular alternatives.
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