The twelve step groups are extremely effective for many people. For those that resonate with their philosophy, they can be wonderful and incredibly powerful. Indeed, they have saved a lot of souls. They are not, however, the only path to recovery from alcohol or other addictions. The 12-step programs have become the treatment of choice in many drug and alcohol programs and are even state-mandated in some areas for violations such as drinking while driving, drinking-related adverse behavior in the workplace or other drinking-related offenses.
And, if you’re not spiritually-oriented and don’t believe in God or a Higher Power, where does that leave you?? Know that you CAN get effective help without going to a 12-step program. There are other options. One approach to taking back control over your life from drinking (or from any addiction) is based on the “Rational Emotive Therapy” instituted by Albert Ellis.
This approach focuses on your own will, your choice, and the fact that you have the power to control your behavior if you choose to do so, knowing full well what the alternative consequences are. This approach is inconsistent with the disease model approach of the 12-step programs. Many therapists who specialize in substance abuse are likely to follow the disease model approach and support AA or NA as an essential component of treatment. Ask them upfront what their orientation is on the phone towards effective treatment.
Certain approaches are more suited to certain individuals. However, first and foremost, take ownership of your problem TODAY and begin to take baby steps to regain control ? by whatever approach suits you ? by seeking the help you need. It is available and you CAN take your behavior back, save your marriage, and save your life.