Alternatives to AA/12 Step Programs

No matter where you are in your recovery, you have no doubt heard about Alcoholics Anonymous (AA) and other 12-step based sober support groups. For well over seven decades, AA and other 12-step based groups have been the benchmark for addiction recovery in the United States.

In his seminal book, Resisting 12-Step Coercion – How to Fight Forced Participation in AA, NA or 12-Step Treatment, Dr Peele explores why 12 step programs such as the AA don’t work are often ineffective. Proponents of the AA would have us believe that that addiction is a chronic disease. For more on our take on why treating addiction as a disease isn’t helpful and may even be harmful (the dark side of AA).

Peer recovery groups such as AA have helped millions of addicts finding lifelong recovery and the 12-Step philosophy is a staple of countless drug treatment programs and rehab facilities. However, many who are seeking freedom from their addiction will not attend AA meetings.

Why Do People Turn Away From AA?

There are several reasons why AA may not be the best fit. For some, they may not like being labelled an addict or alcoholic. Others may reject the strong spiritual foundation on which 12-step groups where created. And there are others who may reject the premise of powerlessness in their alcohol addiction. Despite their best intentions, many people find that AA’s role in society is more negative than positive.

In reality, recovery from substance abuse isn’t a “one size fits all” approach. While the AA philosophy has dominated the recovery landscape and the way we may look at getting sober as a whole, there has been a growing movement spearheaded by recovery groups that are providing an alternative to AA and the 12-Step approach.

Has the 12-steps approach failed to help you?

People don’t WANT to feel powerless.

Many don’t seek a higher power

And, for many, “confessing” their addiction “sins” in public just doesn’t seem helpful.

The Life Process Program doesn’t begin with the idea that you are powerless.  It doesn’t require you to turn your life over to anything or anyone else. In fact, we are not even comfortable with the ‘addict’ label – you are so much more than your relationship with alcohol.

Instead, the Life Process Program works from where you’re at – including what you value most, what your strengths are, what your particular problem is – to allow you to rearrange your life to live without addiction. This online program has been designed to provide alternatives to 12 steps approach.

If you are searching for alternatives to AA, the following articles may be of interest:

Stanton Peele

Dr. Stanton Peele, recognized as one of the world's leading addiction experts by The Fix, developed the Life Process Program after decades of research, writing, and treatment about and for people with addictions. Dr. Peele is the author of 14 books. His work has been published in leading professional journals and popular publications around the globe.

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