The prospect of attending recovery meetings for the indefinite future can sometimes seem a daunting task to the newcomer. Fortunately for us, however, there exists a vast array of meeting types to choose from and keep the program fresh. It is highly recommended to try as many of these meetings on the list as possible to find which suits you best. This list provides a breakdown of the various types of meetings and the meeting code associated with each.
Speaker meetings (S)
Speaker meetings feature a speaker who shares his or her “experience, strength and hope”. In other words, the speaker discusses their experience with substance abuse, the strength they demonstrated in getting sober in recovery, and their hope for the future. This format mirrors how Bill W. chose to present his story in the basic text of Alcoholics Anonymous.
The format for speaker meetings can sometimes vary- such as having two speakers instead of one or having half the meeting featuring a speaker followed by an open discussion during the second half.
Discussion meetings (D)
Discussion meetings typically do not have a set topic, instead relying on the group conscience to dictate the meeting. These meetings are a great forum for newcomers to present their problems to the group to receive feedback and advice.
Beginner’s meetings (B)
These meetings are specifically geared towards the newcomer and are a great way to get introduced to recovery. The format of these meetings often varies greatly from group to group, but all involve experienced members helping newcomers.
Twelve Step meetings (12)
The twelve steps provide the backbone of recovery and are one of the most important aspects of the fellowship. Twelve-step meetings focus exclusively on one of the twelve steps in detail. These meetings often read from the Twelve Steps and Twelve Traditions book, and may even contain a speaker focused on the topic. The second half of the meetings typically is left for sharing an experience or asking questions on the step focused on.
Twelve Traditions meetings (T)
The twelve traditions provide the blueprint that allows for recovery programs to thrive over time. Much like twelve step meetings, these meetings focus on a single tradition in detail and usually involve either a reading from the Twelve Steps and Twelve Traditions book or a speaker.
Big Book Discussion meetings (BB)
The Big Book is the nickname for the basic text of Alcoholic’s Anonymous that outlines the entire program. Big Book Discussion meetings involve the chairperson picking a passage to read followed by the group taking turns reading the passage aloud. Once complete, the remainder of the meeting is devoted to discussion of the passage read.
Men’s or Women’s meetings (M/W)
Men’s/Women’s meetings are typically discussion meetings (see #2) that are separated by sex. They provide an environment to discuss topics that may be more comfortable without the opposite sex present.
Living Sober meetings (LS)
These meetings feature a reading from the Living Sober text followed by discussion. The Living Sober text features tips and suggestions with adjusting to a sober lifestyle.
As Bill Sees It meetings (BSI)
These meetings feature readings and discussion from the text As Bill Sees it, which contains various passages from a variety of sources that were written by Bill Wilson, the founder of Alcoholic’s Anonymous.
This article is intended for those considering a new way of life, free of the pain of drug and alcohol addiction. For more information on recovery and anyone seeking help with addiction and substance abuse problems, please call True Recovery at (844) 744-8783 or visit us online.