Sunday, May 1, 2011

What's God got to do with it?

For many years, one of the first tasks I had for anyone I counseled or supervised was: go to a couple of Alcoholics Anonymous meetings and come back, and we will talk about it. It was effective--most people went, and came back with quite a bit to say and many topics for discussion.

In time, the task expanded. Narcotics Anonymous meetings were introduced as they came into existence, as well as Al-Anon and Nar-Anon. But one observation remained the same:

What's with the God business?

It always generated a lot of discussion. Supervisees coming from a secular background were appropriately skeptical, while both supervisees and people seeking recovery with a more religious background found 12 Step spirituality a little watered-down and weak.

And people who carried some very heavy baggage related to religion just shut down and disappeared.

This, along with other issues I have written about before, led me to a conclusion that for people recovering from addictions and their families, there is no one path that is right for everyone. Over the course of my next few entries, I am going to offer some  observations and contact info for several alternatives to the 12 Step model that have proven their effectiveness, and are much more specific to the needs of the individual seeking recovery.

Some are secular; some are faith-based.

All are effective. I look forward to the discussion.

1 comment:

  1. SMART recovery has excellent, excellent cognitive behavioral resources as well as dialectal behavioral concepts. Beck himself couldn't have written them better. Fantastic stuff that can be incorporated into any program for an added boost of support. just my take..