12-Step is one of the more well-known and commonly used types of recovery support. Alcoholics Anonymous (AA) originated the 12-Step concept in 1938 when founder Bill Wilson wrote out his vision based his own experience with alcohol. Wilson’s program is better known as the Big Book. In its original form, 12-Step came from a Christian inspiration that sought help from a greater power as well as from peers suffering from the same addiction struggles.
The original 12-Step, as outlined in the Big Book, are:
- Admitting powerlessness over the addiction
- Believing that a higher power (in whatever form) can help
- Deciding to turn control over to the higher power
- Taking a personal inventory
- Admitting to the higher power, oneself, and another person the wrongs done
- Being ready to have the higher power correct any shortcomings in one’s character
- Asking the higher power to remove those shortcomings
- Making a list of wrongs done to others and being willing to make amends for those wrongs
- Contacting those who have been hurt, unless doing so would harm the person
- Continuing to take personal inventory and admitting when one is wrong
- Seeking enlightenment and connection with the higher power via prayer and meditation
- Carrying the message of the 12-Step to others in need
Since its origin, the 12-Step model has been adopted and modified by other groups to fit their own beliefs and methods for addiction treatment. Variations come from the fact that some people are uncomfortable with the specific, religious aspects of the 12-Step program. Those who are not Christian have modified the steps to connect their religious or spiritual practices with some tenants of 12-Step program. In addition, many non-religious 12-Step groups have modified the steps for those who are agnostic or atheist so they do not feel compelled to adhere to the concept of a higher power.
We believe that an effective drug and alcohol treatment program should be customized to an individual’s needs to achieve and maintain recovery. That is why we offer clients a variety of group therapy programs.