(Continued from previous)
I personally believe addiction is a very complex medical problem. There is no one-size-fits-all solution. I also understand the reluctance of laypeople and professionals to criticize anything that might help an alcoholic or addict, because nobody wants to deter or discourage them making a positive change. AA and 12-Step programs... "recovery," so-to-speak, have become so culturally ingrained they are almost considered "above reproach" by many. I don't think that's wise or that the organization has earned that kind of following, particularly in light of the evidence. In fact, resistance to 12-Step programs are frequently pointed to as "evidence" the alcoholic/addict is still "in denial."
Newcomers are frequently discouraged from using their own critical thinking skills when raising legitimate questions where AA is concerned, with comments like "Your best thinking got you here." "Take the cotton out of your ears, and put it in your mouth." "Let the group/your sponsor do your thinking for you." They are told failure is never the Program's fault, but the fault of the individual.
IMHO, the very nature of AA discourages the majority of people it doesn't work for from looking for more suitable alternatives. I think that's harmful, particularly to alcoholics and addicts that are likely already dealing with low self-esteem and other emotional/behavioral issues.
I always found it humorous that members are frequently told "Insanity is doing the same thing over and over expecting different results." Except, apparently, in cases of failed 12-Step Treatment (the vast majority) -- where they're advised to "Keep Coming Back!"
Thanks for reading!