Alcoholics Anonymous came to be in Akron Ohio in 1935 It was formed by Bill Wilson and Dr. Bob out of a desperation to stay sober and not quite knowing how to do so. Bill W. had the idea that maybe one drunk trying to help another stay sober might be the key.
Originally Bill W. tried to get sober by attending a religious group, the Oxford Group, and his evolved into AA as we know it today. Bill W. had managed to put together six months of sobriety when he was out of town and was in a situation where he felt like he needed to drink. Instead of taking that first drink he reached out, trying to stay sober. He thought maybe if he helped another drunk, he would feel better and he did. This premise is still keeping drunks sober today. In the early days Dr Bob abd Bill W. would make their rounds to the hospitals trying to help others get sober. The original Big Book or book of AA was based on the fact that one-hundred people had managed to get sober at the time that book was written. Today there are thousands upon thousands of people who are recovering, not only from alcohol but many different kinds of addictions. One of the things that remains true are the original twelve steps of recovery. It is the telling of how the original pioneers got sober and stayed sober.
After all these years the program remains strong and is the spring-board for self-help groups. The twelve steps are the program of recovery and it is essential that people who want to recover and keep their disease in remission they should work the steps to the best of their ability. Many people don’t get past step 1; people falter on the steps based on what they believe at that particular moment. Many people can’t or won’t believe in something other than themselves, so step three is out-turning their lives over. Step four is a huge stumbling block, and then having to talk to someone else about what they did wrong is huge. My point is, is that is not easy.
Recovery is not easy, the drinking and using part was the easier softer way. For people that would like a better life and would like to learn to live life sober, they must practice the principles of AA, it really is life and death. Many people die every day from this disease. It is my opinion that society has a responsibility to educate our children in that this is a horrific disease and anyone can become afflicted. The stigma associated with this must be eradicated in favor of a medical view that treats it as what it is; a bio-psycho-social disease.