“Alcoholic Anonymous is a fellowship of men and women who share their experience, strength and hope with each other that they may solve their common problem and help others to recover from alcoholism (Alcoholic Anonymous, p. 1).” Spiritually is believed to play a major role in helping members of Alcoholic Anonymous remain sober. It is suggested that Alcoholic Anonymous and the inclusion of religion is based on a suggestion Carl Jung made to one of his alcoholic patient. Carl Jung was a psychiatrist who at times worked with persons suffering from alcoholism.
“After working with an American patient (Rowland) suffering from chronic alcoholism and achieving no significant progress; Jung told Mr. Rowland that his alcoholic condition was near to hopeless, save only the possibility of a spiritual experience. Jung noted that occasionally such experiences had been known to reform alcoholics where all else had failed. Mr. Rowland took Jung’s comments to heart and returned to the United States and joined a church. Mr. Rowland shared the comments made by Carl Jung with his friends and other alcoholics. One of the alcoholic he told was Ebby Thatcher who was a long time friend of the future co-founder of Alcoholics Anonymous Bill Wilson. Therefore the influence of Jung is indirectly found in the formation of Alcoholic Anonymous original 12 step program and then into the 12 step recovery movement (Carl Jung, p.6).”
Not only does religion play an important role in the Alcoholic Anonymous program but so does service and unity among the members. I believe this unity enables the members to feel free to share their experiences with each other. I believe that the environment created due to group unity can be compared to the therapeutic environment that counselors thrive to create with their clients.
Alcoholic Anonymous Lifesavers Group Meeting
I attended the Lifesavers open group meeting which was held at the Friendship House. The Friendship House is at 202 23rd Avenue North, Suite 3909, Nashville, Tennessee 37203. The Lifesaver group is an all female group with members ranging in age between 21-70 years of age. There were on average about 25-30 females present. The majority of the women were Caucasians however; there were two African-Americans members present. The meeting began promptly at 6:30 P. M. However, before the meeting began I found myself wondering if the meeting would last more than an hour. I was not excited about attending another Alcoholic Anonymous meeting. When I read the syllabus I remember thinking I have already done this for another class, I need to be reading instead of setting in another alcoholic anonymous meeting.
Start of Meeting
I remember hoping before the meeting began that it would not last more than an hour. However, once the meeting began I forgot about the time. The group leader opened the meeting by introducing herself and stating that she is an alcoholic. Next a predetermined person read the Alcoholic Anonymous...