5 Ways to Talk to Someone About Your Experience with AA
The 12th step of AA is to try to bring the message of the program to others. It is important, though, to do so in a way that is not intrusive and to be kind to those you meet and to speak whom you speak.
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1. Focus on Your Experience
You can only speak for yourself as a recovering addict, so when you attempt to bring up the program to someone else, it is important to focus on your experience instead of trying to speak for everyone in AA.
After all, the Substance Abuse and Mental Health Services Administration states, “The principles of recovery outlined by AA provide effective and proactive tools for continuing one’s recovery from drug involvement,” but each individual must utilize them in the way that works best for their particular needs.
2. Don’t Be Pushy
It can be hard to discuss the program with someone who is reluctant to make a change, but remember not everyone is ready to work on their recovery or to put an end to their substance abuse. Therefore, you can bring up the subject, but try not to push it if the individual does not seem to show any interest in pursuing the matter.
3. Don’t Be Afraid to Say “I Don’t Know”
If the person asks you a question you don’t know the answer to, it is okay to say that. Honesty is extremely important in recovery, but even more so, it is necessary that you don’t give the individual any false information. If they do want to know something you can’t tell them, suggest they come to a meeting with you and talk to someone who is more knowledgeable on the subject.
4. Focus on the Key Ideas
According to the National Institute on Drug Abuse, 12-step facilitation therapy teaches there are three key ideas that predominate in AA:
- Active involvement in meetings and activities
If you can stress these ideas to the individual, it may be easier for them to understand the concept of the program and they may also feel less overwhelmed by the idea of AA. The 12 steps and all they entail can be intimidating, so you could help narrow it down for them to the importance of these three ideas.
5. Be Courteous
Above all, be courteous to the individual and remember their feelings are valid as well. Try and think about how you would have felt if someone had come to you when you were still using and tried to talk to you about AA.
With that in mind, you can often remember to have patience with the individual as well as to avoid saying anything that could be construed as hostile or blaming.
Alcoholics Anonymous Works…
But the program is often utilized best during and/or after rehab. If you have never attended a professional treatment program for your substance abuse, call 800-839-1686Who Answers? to find rehab centers that will strengthen your recovery and allow you to live your life after addiction as safely and happily as possible.