Mutual aid organisations may be the closest thing we have to a free lunch in public health, but what's the reason the seats are so empty?
Recovery journeys can be long and involve several attempts in order for people to resolve their problems. Treatment can be part of this for many, but there are multiple factors outside of treatment that also influence outcomes. One of these is housing. Homeless people with substance use disorders have higher risks, exacerbated further if there … Continue reading Sober living houses – life worth living
Getting connected to others is good for us. Finding new social networks is an important part of many recovery journeys. Mutual aid recovery organisations are key to this process. In the UK, referring to mutual aid is embodied in our National Clinical Guidelines, National Drugs Policies and is endorsed by the National Institute for Health … Continue reading Young people and mutual aid – what’s not to like?
Part of my job is teaching medical students about addiction and recovery, something I enjoy. Like others, I encourage future doctors to attend mutual aid meetings as part of their education. A couple of studies with this theme recently caught my eye. In the first, 138 medical students attended an AA meeting and then wrote … Continue reading Medical Students and AA
Bill White on varieties of secular AA experiences. The ongoing evolution of A.A.'s story -- its history -- suggests that the fellowship will meet this challenge by finding ways to adapt to both religious renewal movements and cultural trends toward secularization without losing its essential character. But "suggest" is all that history can do. The … Continue reading Above criticism
Bill White and Ernie Kurtz examine the factors contributing to AA's resilience in the face of steady attacks Attacking Alcoholics Anonymous (A.A.) and 12-step oriented addiction treatment has become a specialized industry with its own genre of literature, celebrity authors and speakers, single-focus websites, and promoted alternatives. Collectively, these critics suggest that A.A. is an anachronism … Continue reading The hardiness of AA
PBS has a nice write up on the 75th anniversary of the publishing of the AA's basic text. the "big book": April 10, 1939, marks the publication date of “Alcoholics Anonymous: The Story of How Many Thousands of Men and Women Have Recovered from Alcoholism.” One of the best-selling books of all time (it has … Continue reading The Big Book Turns 75
Research continues to shed light on the neurobiology of alcohol/other drug addiction. Modern research supports much of what was intuitively and experientially believed by the medical specialists who supported the Alcoholics Anonymous program in its earliest days. This program will describe a physician's view of alcoholism, as presented in the literature of Alcoholics Anonymous and updated … Continue reading The Doctor’s Opinion – Dawn Farm Ed Series
This week's tribe is the Calix Society. Calix is an association of Catholic alcoholics who are maintaining their sobriety through affiliation with and participation in the Fellowship of Alcoholics Anonymous. Our first concern is to interest Catholics with an alcoholic problem in the virtue of total abstinence. Our second stated purpose is to promote the spiritual … Continue reading Tribes of the recovering community – Calix Society
A colleague who specializes in working with at-risk youth was fond of saying that we could look at those kids as predators, victims or resources. Too often we fail to see them as resources. The same could be said of addicts and alcoholics. The NY Times shines a light on a recovering mayoral candidate who … Continue reading In Race for Boston Mayor, Former Addicts Back Candidate With a Past