What You Need to Know about AA Meetings on Long Island
According to the National Institute on Alcohol Abuse and Alcoholism (NIAAA), nearly 15 million people in the United States suffer from Alcohol Use Disorder (AUD). If you or a loved one is suffering from AUD and want to seek help, there are Alcoholics Anonymous meetings on Long Island that you can join.
For those who have never joined any AA meetings on Long Island, the experience can be daunting. After all, allowing yourself to becoming vulnerable during a very difficult time in your life is not easy. What’s more, unless you are going with a friend or family member, the people in the AA meeting will most likely be strangers.
Attending your first AA meeting on Long Island can play crucial role in overcoming your AUD, and here’s everything you need to know about this program.
What to Expect from an AA Meeting
The great thing about going to AA meetings on Long Island is that you can join on your own terms. You simply find a meeting that is convenient for you to join. You don’t need to submit any sensitive personal information, schedule an appointment, or shell out any money.
Here is what you can expect when you join an AA meeting:
Getting Ready for Your First Meeting
Most AA meetings are held in quiet and secure places such as community centers or churches to help foster a sense of safety and belonging. When you arrive, the first thing you will notice is the informal setting. While there is a counselor who will help facilitate the meeting, there is no “set” flow of speakers. Everyone sits in a semi-circle of chairs and anyone who wishes to share their story is free to do so. The councilor may sit in the middle of the circle to help with the discussion.
AA meetings on Long Island will begin with the facilitator reading the AA Preamble, which is followed by the Serenity Prayer. Afterwards, long-time members of the group share one of the most important pieces of AA literature: the 12 Steps of AA.
The 12 Steps of AA are a set of guidelines that help recovering addicts during their journey. These steps are crucial to success because they help a recovering addict acknowledge their addiction, give themselves to a higher power, and find concrete ways to make amends.
Once the AA literature have been read, anyone who wants to share their struggles or victories with AUD are free to do so. Once everyone has shared their story, the group recites the Lord’s Prayer and the meeting ends.
After the Meeting
After an AA meeting, everyone is free to go. Those who wish to stay and socialize with other attendees may do so. There is often an air of socialization and relief after an AA meeting.
How does Attending an AA Meeting Help?
Here are three concrete ways that attending an AA meeting on Long Island can help you if you are struggling with AUD:
Your Privacy Will be Respected
You will never be forced to share your story when you attend an AA meeting. Even if you simply want to join and sit silently in the circle, you will be welcomed. You are free to share as much or as little as you are comfortable with, nothing more.
You Will Be Around People Going on the Same Journey
It is natural to feel scared or apprehensive when you share your story, especially if you are afraid that you will be judged or rejected. Keep in mind, however, that everyone who attends an AA meeting has had their own struggle with AUD. Acceptance and understanding are the cornerstones of AA meetings, and you will never be singled out because of your past.
Your Pace is Priority
When you join an AA meeting, your journey is yours own. No one will pressure you to “become better” if you are not ready yet. You will not be coerced to join any future AA meetings either. Every step you take, you will take because you are ready to do so.
Finding the Right AA Meeting on Long Island for You
Finding the right AA meeting on Long Island is may help you with a successful journey back to sobriety. If you are having trouble finding an AA meeting near you, check the Alcoholics Anonymous meeting guide.