12-Step Recovery Program

12-Step Recovery Program-- What is it like?

Imagine yourself in the kitchen to make yourself a piece of toast. You have everything you need. But when you push down the lever to lower the bread into the toaster, nothing happens.

You have done every correctly, so you double check -- bread, butter, jam, knife, plate – and you see that everything is in place. But there is one item missing. You have no power to make the toaster work. After a brief “ah ha” moment you plug the toaster in and shortly thereafter enjoy your toast.

The 12-Step Recovery Programprocess is similar to making toast in one respect, you have to plug into a power source, and when you do, everything can start to work. We believe that people are not meant to be alone, to handle the everyday challenges of life. It follows that people are certainly not meant to be alone during the very hard times. Whatever the power source, it is vital to the process.

Addiction 12-Step Recovery Program History

To appreciate the roots of the 12-Step Recovery Program we need to spend a moment to look into the personal history of Alcoholics Anonymous founder Bill Wilson. Click here for History of 12-Step Recovery Program

Please consider using the 12-Step Recovery Program

There are an abundance of web sites and books written about the addiction programs, and we’ll share a few of them with you to give you a broader base of understanding and point you to a few excellence resources.

The 12-Step program is steeped in tradition and firmly supported by spiritual truth, give us all a model of humanity that points us to a better life, a stronger relationship with our neighbors, and an eternal loving relationship with the one who made us.

As you look through the 12-Step Recovery Program, think of them as a process. Like a path you walk on to go from A to Z, only you must take all of the steps and go through each in order, otherwise the path does not lead to your final destination. You go at your own pace and move forward as you see fit. Along the way, remember that these steps were written by people just like you, who needed help and had the courage to accept the help. Regardless of your addiction, 12-Step offers improvement for the human condition. Enjoy your reading. Maybe you like Rev. Buchman and Bill Wilson will go through a spiritual experience of your own. If you do, please share it with us.

The 12-Step Program

Please review each step and try to either begin following them yourself or enroll in a local program. Let’s take a look at the steps. You will see quickly that the process includes others and that we are not meant to go through this alone.

These 12-Steps were written for alcoholics. When you see alcohol, insert your drug of choice.

Step One:

We admitted that we were powerless over alcohol--that our lives had become unmanageable.

Step Two:

Came to believe that a Power greater than ourselves could restore us to sanity.

Step Three:

Make a decision to turn our will and our lives over to the care of God, as we understand Him.

Step Four:

Made a searching and fearless moral inventory of ourselves.

Step Five:

Admitted to God, to ourselves and to another human being the exact nature of our wrongs.

Step Six:

Were entirely ready to have God remove all these defects of character.

Step Seven:

Humbly asked Him to remove our shortcomings.

Step Eight:

Made a list of all persons we had harmed, and became willing to make amends to them all.

Step Nine:

Made direct amends to such people whenever possible, except when to do so would injure them or others.

Step Ten:

Continued to take personal inventory and when we were wrong, promptly admitted it.

Step Eleven:

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.

Step Twelve:

Having had a spiritual awakening as the result of these steps, we tried to carry this message to addicts and to practice these principles in our affairs.

Questions about addiction:

Don't know how to help?

by Tara

My brother has a drug problem. I am his older sister and I really want help him but I do not know how?

Get help for you and your brother
by: Ned Wicker

Dear Tara,

You, like millions of others, want to help a family member, but you don’t know where to turn. My first suggestion is to contact Al-anon in your community. This organization is designed to reach out to people just like you who want to know what they can do to be helpful.

Sometimes people concentrate so much on the person they love that they don’t get help for themselves first. I strongly urge you to make that call, because these people understand. They have been through it all and they have the answers to so many questions. It’s hard to watch your brother and it is an emotionally draining experience. So, you have to learn how you can help and stay strong.

Secondly, you need to have a family meeting for everyone to share feelings and discuss a possible starting point for everyone. If you are alone in your concern, if another member of the family is enabling his behavior and refuses to help, you have an uphill battle on your hands. But if the family is united, this is helpful.

A unified family can be influential in help your brother realize that he needs treatment. You can also research treatment centers in your community and get a feel for the options available to your brother. The treatment facility will also have people to speak to and get their advice.

Joe Herzanek’s book, “Why Don’t They Just Quit?” is also an excellent resource for understanding the mindset of a person with a substance use disorder. So often family members just think the person doesn’t want to quit, or if they did want to quit they should just be able to do it. Joe really outlines what is going on and gives you insight into how to understand the situation you are in.

Churches often have programs for drug users to help them change their lives and get on the right path. Do not minimize the power of a faith-based program. These are just a few ideas to start with. All the best.

My brother who is 19 years old start taking drugs?

by Sanchita

Hi there,

I am very upset and my family is too, the thing is that my brother who is 19 years old start taking drugs. Many times my parents try to get him to confess what drug he is taking and why. But he not tell us anything. We all beg him to stop, but unfortunately we can't stop him and day by day his condition is becoming worse .

My parents are dying because of seeing their son's worsening condition. Please help me and it's really urgent for my family member's life.

I will be really thankful to you and your organization if i will get solution of it by your help.

Waiting for urgent reply,


Your brother has a brain disease
by: Ned Wicker

Dear Sanchita,

Your brother has a brain disease and that affects his decision making ability. He is developing a substance use disorder, so he will deny that he has a problem and probably blame everything on you and your parents.

He may someday realize that he has a problem, an addiction, but he will be the last one to admit it. It is very heart-breaking for you, but you can take action, along with your parents.

You are not alone. Millions of families have a similar problem, and that is why Al-anon exists. Their members can give you emotional support and guidance on what to do. They understand and they know how to help.

A common problem that parents have is the love their sons too much. They don’t want to set rules, boundaries and limitations because they fear their son will leave and cut them out of his life. Because they are afraid, they go along with their son.

The son controls everything. He will lie to them, steal from them and treat them very badly. He has a disease that takes over his life. He is out of control and can’t stop his bad behavior.

This is very emotional and difficult for your parents, so maybe you can take charge and make the call to Al-anon. It is not uncommon for people to resist any help, because they are too worried about their son. They need to allow others to help them.

You can talk to treatment centers in your community and get their advice. Understand that your brother does not want to tell you anything. The disease he has wants to be fed and does not care about anything else.

You need to have a plan to take control away from him and place that control in the hands of professional people who know how to help. He will resist. He will get angry with you. He will blame your parents. But he needs treatment to save his life.

A substance use disorder too often is just another way of committing suicide one high at a time. You need to seek help to stop him.

and Finally Remember:

"Ask and it will be given to you; seek and you will find; knock and the door will be opened to you. For everyone who asks receives; he who seeks finds; and to him who knocks, the door will be opened."
- Matthew 7:7-8

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