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AA and NA may keep you clean and sober by keeping you scared.
Published on January 16, 2013 by Marc Lewis, Ph.D. in Addicted Brains
Wed, 01/16/2013 - 20:25
One thing I always notice is the authors of these articles always frame the question as "Does Alcoholics Anonymous work" and then some reason why it does. First off, the "works" part of the statement is always in question. Are they talking about the 5% that stay, or the 2.5% that actually recover. From my experience when I was going for my engineering degree, the program does not work. One thing I remember from my courses in statistical process control (SPC) is when they showed an old TV ad explaining that a certain spark plug company had the best spark plugs in the world. They showed a few boxes of finished spark plugs that the consumer was going to use, then they showed a pile of rejected spark plugs which was huge. In AA the finished product that gets sold is the 5% and they don't mention the 95% that gets rejected for various reasons.
Statistically AA doesn't work except for the 5% who claim it does. If you were picking the suppliers of the heat shields on the Space Shuttle, would you pick someone whose process provides 95% rejects?
"Tradition 10 - Alcoholics Anonymous has no opinion on outside issues; hence the AA name ought never be drawn into public controversy." Please follow orders from the Interchurch Center if you are an AA member and don't comment.
Thu, 01/17/2013 - 11:31
I thought the article was good, it pointed out the obvious problems with the AA approach and its message:
Twelve-step groups are notorious for convincing members that, even if they’ve been clean for a while, their addiction is out there waiting for them, waiting to sneak up on them in moments of weakness. So they have to remain constantly vigilant: Any slip, even one drink or one pill, will be the first step on a journey that inevitably leads to full-scale relapse. Twelve-step groups want you to keep coming back, to help gird your loins against the hazards of relapse, and they encourage you to define yourself as an addict – for life. In other words, not only the way you govern your life but your whole self-image is frozen in place. This is what you are, and if any change occurs, be warned: it’s going to be a change backward – back to being out of control.
Thu, 01/17/2013 - 14:14
The way I read it is that AA only "works" if it gives you PTSD, which is very dangerous indeed. You see many people especially war veterans suffer from PTSD and drink to self medicate themselves. You put a person suffering from PTSD caused by one thing to switch them to another type of stress.
Given that AA only works for about 5% of the people who attend, it would appear that AA works as a sieve. In other words if you throw a hundred people into the sieve of AA, it sorts out the ones that either have PTSD or a propensity to get it. Of course some people who do not have PTSD or a propensity to get it slip through and are usually labeled as "normies," but they stay for one reason or another. The "normies" are considered an anomaly or outlier, but they are still encouraged to participate and search out prospects for the cult.
One of our Fellowship failed entirely with his first half dozen prospects. BB p.96, Working With Others
Tue, 01/22/2013 - 12:57
There doesn't appear to much relief from anxiety and depression using the AA method.
In fact the AA method is fear based and could be instilling anxiety and stress in people.
Are twelve steps too many was an article done by time magazine which cited evidence by Miller which clearly showed those attending AA suffered much more anxiety and depression than those receiving secular recovery.
It all is adding up. AA can do a lot of harm.