Q: What is the difference between meeting types?
- Closed – In support of A.A.’s singleness of purpose, attendance at closed meetings is limited to persons who have a desire to stop drinking. If you think you have a problem with alcohol, you are welcome to attend this meeting. We ask that when discussing our problems, we confine ourselves to those problems as they relate to alcoholism
- Open – In keeping with our singleness of purpose and our Third Tradition which states that “The only requirement for A.A. membership is a desire to stop drinking,” we ask that all who participate confine their discussion to their problems with alcohol
- Barrier Free – There are no steps and a wheelchair can easily get into the meeting, or there is an elevator
- Women Only – Women’s Only meeting
- Men Only – Men’s Only meeting
- Big Book – Meeting refers to the book “Alcoholics Anonymous”
- 12 & 12 – Meeting refers to the book “Twelve Steps and Twelve Traditions”
Q: Do I need to identify myself as an alcoholic to be welcomed in an AA meeting?
You will never be forced to identify yourself as an alcoholic at an AA meeting. This is a personal decision for you to make if and when it feels applicable
Q: What if I see someone I know at an AA meeting?
Personal anonymity is a founding principle of our program. When attending an AA meeting, sober alcoholics practice the saying – “whoever you see here, whatever you say here, let it stay here”. Outside of meetings we don’t speak about who we saw or what we heard. We are not anonymous to each other, but it is important to respect every alcoholic’s right to remain anonymous.
Q: I am not an alcoholic but have been sentenced by the Courts to attend AA meetings. What meetings should I attend?
If you have a desire not to drink, you may attend any closed meeting of Alcoholics Anonymous. Those who do not have a desire to stop drinking should attend an open meeting of AA. Court slips may be signed at closed or open meetings depending upon the group’s decision about signing slips. Groups are not required to sign court slips but most do, in cooperation with your needs.