What is a Real “Support Group”?
Another 12 Step myth is that one needs the AA “support” group (or Alanon for all of you enabling “co-dependents”) and this will be a life-long association. The truth is exactly the opposite.
As we noted in our article The Bucket of Crabs, or Why AA and Alanon are Bad For Your Health, joining these groups is the best way to stay stuck in alcohol abuse or with an alcohol abusing spouse or other family member. AA teaches you to be an alcoholic, use that “title” to exploit and manipulate others, and to avoid assuming any responsibility for your drinking. Alanon teaches you to whine about your situation rather than doing anything about it.
Those are support groups?
Real Support Groups have the following attributes:
- They are centered around an activity you enjoy (no, not whining);
- The activity is incompatible with abusing alcohol;
- No one there knows that you have a history of alcohol abuse;
- You have a vested interest in your alcohol history never coming up;
- The other participants lead the sort of life you aspire to.
Once again, you know more than you think you do – and a lot more than the Steppers. What you know includes:
- I’m not powerless;
- I’m not diseased;
- I’m not stupid;
- I don’t need to join a cult;
- I don’t need to continue to lead an alcohol focused life – in any form;
- I can change.
Put all of those ideas together and you have much of the framework necessary to leave alcohol abuse behind.
And that’s where we come in.
Reorganizing your day-to-day life can be an overwhelming task when you attempt it all by yourself. Simply choosing where to start – especially when you are being avalanched by situations, people, and events – can discourage the best of us. Yet that is what’s required and, as daunting as it seems now, it’s very doable, and in a remarkably short period of time.
We spend 5 days with you, and only you, sorting out what you are medicating – the benefits of drinking – and how these are going to be replaced.
Then we spend 12 weeks coaching you as you modify your daily life into one that is more satisfactory without alcohol than it currently is with.
That is, after all, why you are contemplating change, isn’t it? If you were happy with your alcohol-infused lifestyle you wouldn’t be reading this, would you?
Yes, change requires some effort, it means enduring some temporary discomfort, and you’ll need to set aside some fears (most of which turn out to be groundless), but it’s easier than you imagine, and far more rewarding.
And, no, you won’t be turned into a diseased and powerless alcoholic pariah whose only life revolves around the demeaning and degrading rituals of a cult no normal person would join at gunpoint.
You do want to get back to “normal” don’t you? Just a different normal than the one you’ve been living? Your normal, not theirs. Your life with all of its opportunities and idiosyncrasies, but yours.
Ready to become more of yourself, not less? That’s what we offer.
Powerless Victim, or Empowered Individual?
When it comes to ending your alcohol abuse, those are pretty much your choices. You can either sign up for being an “alcoholic” and give up your individuality, freedom of choice, intelligence, and most of life’s activities, or…..
Or you can decide to assert, or reassert, yourself and take advantage of your abilities, intelligence, interests, individuality, and power to become more, not less, of yourself.
Door #1 absolves you of responsibility for yourself and your choices, past, present, and future. For overage children, that’s the obvious and popular choice. Such is the appeal of cults. “Dear god, don’t make me think! Or be responsible for myself!”
For the rest of us? Not so much. The price is just too high.
Door #2 says you’re free:
- To think;
- To choose;
- To become more;
- To lead your own life;
- To pursue your own goals and dreams;
- To quit blaming, whining, and complaining.
Obviously, we’re behind Door #2, ready to help you move from self-sabotage to self-empowerment. How?
Over the past 30 years, individually and together, we have assembled the various program components that actually work to allow people to successfully grow and change and become. Among other “tools” in our chest are:
- Assertiveness Training;
- Motivational Enhancement;
- Diet & Exercise;
And because we work with you as an individual, we can work together to design your specific mosaic of changes that will enhance you and your life. All accomplished privately, affordably, confidentially, efficiently, and effectively.
Just call. We do answer the phone personally, almost every day of the year, from 8:00 a.m. to 5:00 p.m. Pacific Time, unless we are with clients. If we don’t answer, leave a number and we will return your call promptly and, again, personally.