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Reply #97: Well, this thread was like a moth to a "flame" for me [View All]

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eileen_d Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Sat Oct-11-03 02:16 PM
Response to Original message
97. Well, this thread was like a moth to a "flame" for me
Edited on Sat Oct-11-03 02:21 PM by eileen_d
ha ha. I would just like to share my own experience.

I do not think AA or other twelve step groups are cults, and I am very grateful for their existence, because they have undoubtedly saved lives, as some very strong people on this thread have attested.

I believe this despite an experience with a SINGLE, LOCAL group which I participated in for about a year (I was in Al-Anon; they also hade AA there). This SPECIFIC group, upon reflection, did have some of the characteristics of a cult. However, when I finally decided to leave for good, I was brave enough to visit other local AA & Al-Anon meetings. In these meetings I found many people who did not like the way that other group did things; in fact there were a lot of ex-members (of that particular group) who had felt like I did.

I think the most important thing about AA & Al-Anon is to try a lot of different meetings, and actually believe in the program slogan "Take what you want and leave the rest." (along with "Keep an open mind") The original group I was in did not believe in doing either of these things -- they actually said "Take what you want and file the rest for future reference", and they considered people who went to other meetings as basically "slipping". (I don't remember them every saying "keep an open mind" -- it was more like "shut up and listen!")

I want to thank the other people in recovery for sharing their stories here. As my dad, a recovering alcoholic for over 20 years, told me -- the most important part of AA is one drunk talking to another drunk. And that's how it works.

(Edit - wanted to add stuff about "keep an open mind")
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