Are There Free Resources Near Me?
There are several peer support groups for people with drug and alcohol addictions. These support groups are not professional. There is no charge to join the group. They may take donations to cover expenses.
Alcoholics Anonymous (AA) began in 1935. It was started by two men who decided they drank too much. Now there are meetings worldwide. Including some near you in Bensalem, Pennsylvania, each week.
Alcoholics Anonymous is the original twelve-step group. The twelve steps are the guidelines members follow to stay sober. The only requirement to be a member is to want to stop drinking.
There is a spiritual part to the steps. Members do not need to be part of a specific religion to be part of the group. Many people who do not take part in religion have found help in Alcoholics Anonymous.
Narcotics Anonymous (NA) is another twelve-step peer support group. This group was started in Los Angeles during the 1950s. They also now have support groups across the globe.
NA members consider themselves a group of men and women who have battled drug addictions. Someone with an alcohol problem can also be part of this group. They consider alcohol to be a drug.
Again, Narcotics Anonymous is a peer-based group. There are no professional addiction counselors in charge of the meetings. There are many meetings nearby.
Al-Anon and Alateen
These support groups are a bit different. They are for the family members of the person who has an alcohol addiction. They do follow the twelve-step process.
Al-Anon meetings do not include the person who has a drinking problem. Members share coping strategies with each other. This is also a peer-based group. There are no professional leaders.
Alateen is specifically for teenagers affected by another person’s alcohol addiction. There are adult group leaders for Alateen meetings. This is for safety.
The adult group leaders must be part of Al-Anon. They go through a training course before leading a group. But, they are not professional counselors. If the adult group leader is not available, teens can join the Al-Anon meeting.
There are some Al-Anon and Alateen meetings near you.
SMART Recovery began in the United States in 1994. It is not a twelve-step group. SMART is an acronym that stands for Self-Management And Recovery Training.
SMART Recovery uses science-based tools to teach people how to change their behavior. They do not use the term addict. This group focuses on changing any kind of addictive behavior. It could be substance use or something like gambling.
There are a few SMART Recovery meetings in your area.