The 12 Step Programme and Rehabilitation

The original twelve steps were published by Alcoholics Anonymous (AA) in 1939 and thanks to their undeniable success, the overwhelming majority of community recovery and support groups now follow similar principles and guidelines.

A 12-Step program has an explicit framework that aims to guide a person from addiction to recovery by using a succession of twelve distinct steps to help release the addict from the grasp of drugs and alcohol.

American Psychological Association has identified the most important aspects of a 12-Step support program as follows:

• 1. Admitting that you are no longer in control of your addiction or impulses
• 2. Realising that a higher power can help you conquer your impotence over drugs
• 3. Assessing your mistakes
• 4. Making amends to those you have wronged
• 5. Discovering how to make new choices
• 6. Helping others overcome their own struggles with addiction.

The original Twelve Steps first used by Alcoholics Anonymous almost 70 years ago are as follows:

• 1. We admitted we were powerless over alcohol – that our lives had become unmanageable.
• 2. Came to believe that a Power greater than ourselves could restore us to sanity.
• 3. Made a decision to turn our will and our lives over to the care of God as we understood Him.
• 4. Made a searching and fearless moral inventory of ourselves.
• 5. Admitted to God, to ourselves, and to another human being the exact nature of our wrongs.
• 6. Were entirely ready to have God remove all these defects of character.

• 7. Humbly asked Him to remove our shortcomings.
• 8. Made a list of all persons we had harmed, and became willing to make amends to them all.
• 9. Made direct amends to such people wherever possible, except when to do so would injure them or others.
• 10. Continued to take personal inventory and when we were wrong promptly admitted it.
• 11. Sought through prayer and meditation to improve our conscious contact with God as we understood Him, praying only for knowledge of His Will for us and the power to carry that out.
• 12. Having had a spiritual awakening as the result of these steps, we tried to carry this message to alcoholics, and to practice these principles in all our affairs.

Physical, Mental and Spiritual

Rehabilitation centres use the twelve step programme by recognising that the human body has three dimensions: the physical, mental and spiritual. Doctors help with the physical problems and for example offering a detox from alcohol or the drug the person is addicted to.

What is required is counselling for the mental/emotional issues and obsession with alcohol or the drug of choice, and also attention to be paid to the spiritual nature of addiction as an illness. The contention is that self-centeredness is a prime indicator of an ‘ill spirit’.

If you or a loved one have a drink or drug related problem. Please call 01462 851414 for confidential help and advice