Coming into recovery, we put our whole effort into our 12-step program. We finished treatment, did 90 meetings in 90 days, got a sponsor, worked the steps, and sponsored others. Our recovery was guaranteed, right? You can't go wrong if you work the whole program! Or so we thought....
The reality is that, while getting clean/sober and working the steps did some amazing things for our lives, we still had other "outside" issues that we needed to work on. These were issues that weren't necessarily addressed within the AA/NA fellowship. Rather, they were issues that perhaps needed a little more focus to improve our recovery.
Many of us come from families that also struggle with addiction issues. Perhaps a parent or sibling is in recovery, or perhaps they are still in active addiction. For people who are in relationships, your partner may as well have an addiction, but you're the only one in recovery at this time. Sometimes walking away from the relationship is a possibility, but sometimes it isn't. In either case, Al-Anon helps people cope with the difficulty of having an alcoholic/addict family member and stop enabling the addictive behaviors.
If you grew up in a home with one or both parents as alcoholics or addicts, Adult Children of Alcoholics (ACOA) might help you find healing as well. Within this 12-step fellowship, members seek to recover not only from dysfunctional families with addictions, but from any type of abusive, neglectful, or otherwise unhealthy family dynamic.
Perhaps in recovery you've come to realize that you're a people pleaser. Maybe you can't say no, and you feel like you let people walk all over you. It might even be difficult to identify what your feelings are, or perhaps you always feel angry at others - particularly your loved ones. If you find that the majority of your relationships with others tend to be unhealthy or unbalanced, you may find answers and healing within the Codependents Anonymous (CoDA) fellowship.
There are many other 12-step fellowships and support groups that help us overcome our own emotional issues and improve our recovery. A quick internet search will bring up recovery groups for almost any addictive or compulsive behavior. What is important though is that we seek to continue our recovery and growth for as long as we continue to live. There is always something new to learn, experience, or improve in our lives. And truly successful recovery is a lifelong journey to be passionately pursued.
Chateau Recovery can help you identify and get involved with the appropriate 12-step fellowships that will improve your recovery. To learn more about Chateau Recovery, contact us at (800) 379-4401 or fill out the contact form on this page. For reference, below are the official websites for the fellowships listed above:
Alcholics Anonymous (AA)
Narcotics Anonymous (NA)
Adult Children of Alcoholics (ACOA)
Codependents Anonymous (CoDA)