The 12 step method has been the standard in drug and alcohol abuse recovery for over 70 years. The only problem is that the method does not help patients get to the heart of the addiction – the biochemical processes.
With a Non AA approach, patients can get the support they need in physically detoxing from the substance so they can go into the therapy process with a clean slate and a clear head.
Here are the ways that AA programs hold back patients – and why we say “No 12 Steps!”
Twelve step programs indoctrinate and reinforce the belief that the addict is helpless.
AA and NA methodology is founded on the belief that patients are always “recovering addicts.” There’s no hope for a cure and patients will need to battle this demon for the rest of their lives. This can be very discouraging and defeating for someone who is trying to face their addiction problems. If they enter the program knowing there will never be a cure, they may find themselves relapsing as a “self fulfilling prophecy.”
In contrast, non AA treatment options first look at the biochemical nature of addiction and help the patient beat that. They then use a no 12 steps therapy approach that helps patients deal with the source of their addiction – emotional and psychological trauma or pain.
Twelve step programs are focused on the group – and not the individual.
Group therapy sessions can be destructive to morale and motivation – and are a good reason to say “No 12 Steps!” In group therapy sessions the emphasis is on the entire group. Patients are grouped together, despite their very different reasons for turning to drugs and alcohol. These meetings can quickly devolve in “sharing war stories” which can bring up triggers for abuse.
Non AA treatment has individual therapy as its key form of psychological work. While group sessions may be part of the overall treatment plan, patients get the one on one attention that they need to deal with their personal reasons for turning to drugs and alcohol.
Twelve step programs rely on religion and guilt.
A heavy religious component is often used in the AA and NA methodology to coerce patients into believing that they are helpless. Since they are powerless to do anything about their addiction, they have to turn themselves over to a higher power.
While spirituality and religion can be a key part of recovery for many people, it’s not for everyone and doesn’t have to be part of a non AA treatment modality. Many patients feel hopeless and take a “No 12 Steps” stance because they don’t feel comfortable with religion or the guilt that comes with the AA/NA use of religion.
When a patient feels guilty, they don’t feel empowered. A non AA approach through an advanced rehab facility can restore hope for patients.
If you know that no 12 steps can help your loved one, it’s time to explore alternatives.
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