Richardson_Monica_5334Monica Richardson – Director and Producer of her First Documentary film The 13th Step

MONICA RICHARDSON: FILMMAKER- – Activist for Safety- Singer/Songwriter/ Actress

Monica Richardson is a filmmaker; grass roots activist and national blog talk radio person for her show “Safe Recovery”. Her show has over 240,000 downloads, available free on iTunes and @ blogtalkradio.com/saferecovery. Monica is an avid supporter for those harmed in any AA or NA meeting or it’s culture.

Monica recently appeared on the July 16, 2013 episode on Katie Couric’s show “Katie” for her social activism and her life story’s featured in the New York Times best-selling book, Her Best Kept Secret – Why Women Drink and How They Can Regain Control by journalist Gabrielle Glaser.

Monica was also interviewed for the upcoming episode of CBS 48 hours where she was interviewed for her activism work to make things safer within AA, problems with the court system and the making of her Documentary film The 13th Step.

Monica began her career studying both music and acting. She was a member of the Groundlings Improvisation School with fellow classmates Conan O’Brien and Damon Wayans. She also studied at Playhouse West with Shawnee Smith and Heather Graham. She has since released three music albums. She has also had a modest success as a voice actor appearing on the animated series Batman, Sofia the First and a number of national commercials.

Monica is also the business manager of KMR Productions. She previously held positions at LACER Afterschool Programs, and 20th Century Fox Film Corporation.

More recently in preparation for her documentary, Monica attended classes at the UCLA extension Documentary Film Class, “Produced By” Conferences, Hot Docs Conference in Toronto, (2013 and 2014), 2012 and 2013 West Docs, and the 2014 Getting Real Doc film Conference in Los Angeles. She also attended the 2008 Midem Music conferences at Cannes, and many ASCAP Expo’s. She attended Santa Monica College for music classes. She studied Voice and piano.

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160 thoughts on “About

  1. Years ago I had a drinking problem.I constantly felt the urge to drink.In my late 20,s I got into a bunch of Tony Robbins programs.I also went to a bunch of workshops on assertive traing,boundaries etc.I,m lucky enough that I get to listen to tapes while I work,Stephen Covey etc,but more importantly I did the assignments on the tapes.I also meditated,play in a band,Course of Miracle groups etc.What I noticed a few years later is this urge to drink totally disappeared.I,m 60 years old now and have a beer or a glass of wine without any urge what-so-ever to get a buzz.Have for years. I,ve worked with and known many people from AA or al anon and they are the most screwed up people I know.They are also very controlling and abusive and arrogant about their expertise about addiction.Thank God I Didn,t get involved with AA.Mind u,I don,t think Tony Robbins is perfect.I disagree with some stuff,but I find people like himStephen Covey etc are just giving u tools to learn how to love and accept yourself and others and connect with people and structure ur life.I,m a much more content and happier person today. Recently I started seeing an addiction counsellor because my wife had started spending money at the casino a few years back.She,s since backed off for the past 6 months but the service is free so I thought why not.After a while I thought some of the thinks this counsellor was telling me seemed weird and controlling.Sure enough last week he told me AA ans al anon were the only way to stop addiction,we should go and all the baloney that comes with it,it,s a lifetime thing,u can,t recover blah blah blah.My wife is doing fine and learning to structure her life better without gambling.Anyway,that,s my story.For the longest time I thought AA was kind of a cult and I,m glad I,ve come across info that shows some people feel the same.Thank you,sincerely Rick Menard

    • HI rick and thank you for posting ! Ah how lucky you were to side step AA. I too read Tony Robbins and did the fire walk 3 years ago with my oldest son. I agree. Not perfect but better then Bill W. LOL

      Glad to hear your wife and you saw the writing on the wall with the Therapist pushing 12 for Gambling .

      • I am about as staunch an anti fire walker as I am toward AA. But having said that, if I came across a bunch of people walking on coals…. I would likely join in. lol

        as mentioned above it is nice to find a group of people who see AA as the mess it is. yes. And there are many more who do not care to blog about it. I would bet millions more than AA can claim to have in their membership.

        • OMG, the “AA Classes” thing just hit me. If they can get the world to think people are sent to “AA Classes” then it is easier to blame the person for failing – like school. They are drawing a direct subliminal analogy to school. People that don’t do the work fail at school.

          That said, think of a class of 1,000 students that enroll in a school. Visualize a crowd of 1,000 people. At the end of the first year, there will be 50 to 100 of that class left. At the end of 2 years, about half of those will be gone leaving 25-50. The next year, half again and so on. Now switch into reality and realize that most of society thinks that putting people with a substance abuse problem into a faith healing, community support environment with a success rate of that exercise is the right thing to do. It boggles the mind really.

      • I’ll be the first to congratulate anyone who cleans up. 12-step recovery is not for everyone, but it has help millions so to publicly denigrate it seems not in keeping with the principles of recovery, no matter how you got there. You should proclaim the virtues of what ever method you chose for your recovery, but you should not diminish another that has a proven track record over 80 years. It doesn’t help anyone.

        • Mike H. – Do the math. Around 95 out of 100 people leave AA before attending AA for one year. If AA has helped millions, then AA must have failed 10’s of millions. No one has said that AA has never helped someone. However, news reports are full of cases where AA members have raped, murdered, and just generally fucked over many people. Rape, murder, stealing, etc are definitely not in keeping with the principles of recovery. I recommend that you read the news reports contained in this blog.

          • common- If AA has helped millions, then AA must have failed 10’s of millions.

            Great one liner. I will use this one she I get the chance. 🙂

        • Excuse me- but we are not in an AA meeting.

          You should??? who are you talking to ????…..do you even realize you are on my blog?

          This is not a public forum.

          Can you even read? Its says LEAVING AA….that is what the site is for …MIKE H>

          No… AA has not helped Millions. Millions walked through the door who are forced there.

          And What Principal;s of recovery are you talking about.
          Defaming my character?

          Raping women and small 5 year old children
          Bullying successful men with 17 years of sobriety.

          Telling women who were raped “whats your part in it?

          And no …AA has not had a proven track record for 80 years. It was founded in that year, but AA has only ben huge in the past 30 years. NOT 80 !!!!

          History AA lesson 101

          1935 Bill stops drinking.

          1944 Marty Mann comes along and introduces Bill to Rockefeller and lots of other rich New Yorkers.

          Saturday Evening Post promotes AA with Bills face on the cover. ( Its cool for Bill to not be anonymous and famous actors , but little lowly average people have to be anonymous )

          1933 – Harry Angslinger, the current drug Czar arrests 22,000 doctors for writing scripts for heroin or opium addicted americans. ( Which was legal at the time ) Doctors say ” GEE you can have the drunks and the addicts ..

          AA still stays very small , but AA get into Harvard and Mass. General . It has never left and has controlled even scientific research around addiction and alcohol dependancies.

          1955 – Marty Mann meets CEO of IBM and he gives her millions to promote her agendas through facade of The National Council on Alcoholism Education , front for AA.
          ( AA now pretends to promote itself cause Marty a rich high society AA member is doing it for them. ) Bill also leaves her alone cause Marty Is gay.

          1955-1969 Marty Mann goes to Hollywood to promote AA through Movies, aka The Lost weekend and The Days of Wine and Roses.

          1960’s- AA is still flatlining and declining so they do a massive campaign to send speakers to CATHOLIC Grade Schools in NYC and Around the country. Many of my friends fell for the trap as did I…..how disgusting is that. To go after children to brainwashing them.

          1975 Dick Van Dyke and a two other senators and some journalists who are steppers hold a press conference in Washington DC and say – Hey …we are in AA and were are great. Join US!!!

          More AA movies get made. More free propaganda.
          Im a teenage alcoholic movie comes on for ABC TV ….

          AA grows the most during this period.

          AA has about a 5 % success rate. That means its has a 95 % failure rate.

          Now get off my blog and go to the orange papers or Rowdy rum on FACEBOOK where they will love you .

          In the mean time I have some beefs to take care of and expose AA for the dangerous place it currently is.

          BTW most men are leaving AA now in droves not because of sex offenders and violent offenders, but because of your insane 1930’s thinking and stupid steps that cause men to feel like crap about themselves.

          AA is an outdated modality that has no business in our courts or judicial system either.

          • Just a few things – and first my personal disclaimers: I’ve done Alateen and later, Al-anon . I don’t subscribe to AA. I do think it is cult-like for quite a number and it can, and often does, pose a public safety threat. I’ve deeply studied and taught Sexual Ethics while in college and the constant exposure has made identifying sexual predators and opportunists near second-nature. There’s ‘zero’ question that most any recovery program, even many in professionally monitored facilities would be a haven for sexual predators mixed against vulnerable men and women and not nearly enough care or precaution is taken to protect them. There’s also zero question, for those capable of cognition, that the steps and even xA as a whole are clumsily disguised social exertions of Christian proselytizing; another something that is especially coercive on those people in emotional turmoil. It is a violation of the Establishment Clause (taxpayer funded) and all references to God, prayers, etc, are disturbing: at least in my perspective.

            However – your response does warrant feedback as well.

            12 step programs like xA fail a lot, yes. There is absolutely zero reliable data or peer reviewed metrics capture to demonstrate how much (meaning your claim of 95% failure is anecdotal at best) and gathering such data would be equally impossible given the Anonymous nature of 12 step programs. Once chemical dependency sets in, many forms and programs towards sobriety fail or at least have a significantly high number of relapses no matter what method, science or psuedo-science they are based on. That being said, dismissing those that it does help seems every bit as silly. When it boils down to it: does it matter if the thing that successfully holds someones’ personal demons at bay is the ardent belief in fantasy versus a more structured or medicinal approach? If I were healthier and happier than I’d been in decades because I turned to a raw vegan diet – is it really that bad? And if someone’s solution to overcoming a problem as big as alcoholism or oxy addiction fails for most others but doesn’t ‘hurt’ others, how is that ‘their’ problem? It occurs to me that the result for the many that have found some measure of peace or the strength to overcome a personal problem is what matters in the end.

            To your other point – yes, it is your blog. Even your domain. And here you can express your PoV. But demanding those who have a differing perspective ‘get off your blog’ or condescendingly inquiring if they understand that the name is ‘Leaving AA’ as though that means yours and those who wholly agree with you are the only valid opinions does a lot more to highlight a lack of confidence in your position than the reasonableness of those that offer differing commentary. And, not for nothing, but it’s the Internet – and a Blog: which by its very nature is a vehicle for thoughts and publicity and therefore, discussion, combat, disagreement and adjustment. It’s akin to a chef commenting that some of his diners are idiots because they think the dish the chef made was bland and that they must know nothing about food or taste. If yours is the only opinion you want expressed or to be considered valid, then take down the blog and leave a webpage instead: and never ever Google your documentary reviews. Personally, my take is that you’re made of sterner stuff than that – and that you may be reasonable and reasoned with to accomplish an all too rare thing these days: honest and well articulated discourse that presents a comprehensive range of thoughts on a given topic.

            What needs to change with xA and 12 step programs? Lots. First, and foremost – make it safe.

            At any rate, I will be watching your film soon and look forward to commenting later. I also deeply enjoy some of your articles and find the premise of ‘leaving AA” novel and long overdue.


            • Let me put it to you this way—- you have the WHITE HOUSE Promoting the AA cult, the TV SHOWS like MOM ( which is one big commercial for AA) NASHVILLE and 10 other shows with AA thread lines and FILMS like FLIGHT and SMASHED —The DAYS of WINE and ROSES- The Lost Weekend-( Marty Mann, MS AA, had her hand in the Early AA propaganda films) 28 days ——-When A MAN LOVED A WOMAN—– and many more as AA propaganda……Even though AA…. internally is dying.

              Next we have the FAA, ALL COURTS IN AMERICA- ALL DUI offenders- ( this is about 1.4 million people a year) being slothed into AA meetings…..against their will. ALL NURSES—-ALL LAWYERS——PILOTS AND —–DOCTORS …EXTORTED TO GO THERE AGAINST THEIR WILL! FYI- Extortion is illegal in the USA. There is a group of pilots that has created a class action lawsuit—-suing the FAA- and their Companies.

              Now lets look into the MUSIC BIZ- extortion going on there BIG TIME—-holy crap—–that’s a mind field of steppers starting with Elton John. EVEN Billy Joel told him where to go—-for constantly barraging him about joining his abstinence based cult ….Poor EMINEM….didnt have a chance to be a young person who just over uses something briefly….There are many artists that have been extorted.

              There are huge pro AA FACEBOOK PAGES like THE Rowdy Rum that have never allowed me or my type in that group to have an “INTELLIGENT ARGUMENT about what you say….So why don’t you go there….and talk about what an asshole I am. For actually being IN CONTROL of MY BLOG that costs me over $2000 to keep running each year.

              and one last thing—–If we write to the Los Angeles Times or the NY Times ,( WHICH WE HAVE DONE ) they will print an AA PUFF piece instead of the truth about AA which is censorship. Luckily, other reporters are writing the FACTS in small towns and small papers. You can see these stories in my film.

              Katie Couric and CBS 48 HOURS are no small potatoes. VICE is doing a piece on 13th STEPPING and has interviewed me and many others who have been raped and sexually harassed.

              Lastly- if an AA lover goes to AA and preaches their ++++ for AA they are given standing ovations ….If one criticizes AA in a meeting….intelligent discussion is NOT supported——that does not happen ——……They are then ostracized and Bullied by mentally ill old timers.

              One more thing — you have the nerve to suggest I take down my blog…your a trip…

              We are not in AA anymore. We are free.

            • “AA has about a 5 % success rate. That means its has a 95 % failure rate.”

              This is a quote from Harvard Psychiatrist addiction Specialists for 30 years Lance Dodes…http://www.lancedodes.com/

              One more thing-

              These are not people just disagreeing- they are abusive, bullying, condescending and arrogant. ….telling us what to think or that we are wrong. They are immature steppers….

          • Okay so… Anybody wanna help me stop drinking? Or is this a political debate?
            Because I just shat blood for the tenth time in a row and I want to die.
            I hated AA because it wasn’t actually anonymous.
            At all.
            My worst and scariest followers were people who found me in AA.
            What about that stopping thing…
            Does that Happen here?
            Lemme know
            Literally always wasted.

            • This is a site about people who grew frustrated with AA.

              As for the drinking thing, please check out http://www.hamsnetwork.org which is about how to change your drinking. I strongly recommend getting the book (paper or electronic) as the information is best presented in that format. Best of luck to you. You are not alone.

            • HeckNo,

              I practice abstinence, which means I do not drink or take any drugs and I do not attend AA. It can be done. I have been doing it for years now. I feel like a million bucks–I hop out of bed in the morning without a hangover (mine were horrendous) tend to my business and then make it an early bedtime.

              I agree with outofwoods about seeing a doctor–please do seek medical attention. After you have detoxed safely then you will have a whole world open up to you, and I know you think life will be boring without alcohol, but the reality is just the opposite.

              We must remember that our great-great-great grandparents had it much harder than we do, and that their lives were without basic comforts and yet, they carried on. I’m not saying that we are weak, but our bodies and our spirits have been compromised by something- what, I don’t know.

              However, now is the time to express your glorious genetic heritage and become a caretaker of the planet. What a miracle it is that we are all alive today.

              Go to meetings if you just need to ‘be amongst people’ –there are many nice AA members, just make sure to use good judgement.

              Take care now.

            • My husband ‘shat blood’ regularly. That’s a bad thing. What’s worse – was that he got used to it as being normal. Now he is dead (cancer). You seriously need to see a doctor and tell them what is going on.

              I personally would never attempt to help someone get sober over the internet because I believe face to face is important. Start looking for alternatives to AA in your area. There has got to be something – make the effort or things will only get worse.


            • Heckno- PLease contact a Doctor – and seek a Medical Professional for help. If you are in Los Angeles- Contact Alternatives. If you are in NY contact Center for Motivation and Change.

              You can ask for Naltrexone- but please see your General Practitioner.

              We are not Doctors here. I wish you well.
              Stay in touch and let us know how it goes.

              ALSO Kenneth Andersons Hams Harm Reduction is a good site but you sound like you need more then that.

            • I used to end up in emergency rooms, jails or passed out in the gutters regularly. I haven’t had a drink in 22 years. I’m comfortable with myself wherever I go and around everybody with whom i associate. I’ve had a successful career and a very happy family life. Worry has been removed from my life entirely. If you care to know how I got this gift, I’ll gladly let you know.

        • Do you hear yourself? You sound ridiculous. ‘Don’t tell’ is the attitude that kept perverts hidden in the churches for so long. No more of that nonsense…. people have a right to speak their truth. It is folks like yourself who ACTIVELY such down conversation that are damaging to AA. You must a treat during a group inventory.


        • Actually it does not have a proven track record it all. It has like a 5% success rate! Hardly a record to hang your hat on!

          But it has proven to be a dangerous religious cult.

        • I agree. Well said. AA is a spiritual program that teaches those in recovery how to treat other people. Degrading anyone for not being perfect is against their 12 steps.

        • its clear to see some people can make a nice living out of aa bashing, the lady monica seems to be making a name for herself over aa or na bashing and i am sure it doesnt hurt her bank balance either
          resentments towards aa are many but to blame aa for whatever bad things go on is just loony tunes.

          but in this world people see opportunity to cash in everywhere and this lady seems to be a master at it good luck to her and her bank account

          • Meanwhile there are many many corrupt souls that simply cannot resist on brokering lives in exchange for maximum dollar while promoting pseudoscientific religeous woo. But hey lets not get facts in the way of reality now.

        • What a great response Mike! I am a member of AA and it has worked for me since 2002. I encourage anyone to choose the path that works for them and do not think the AA way is better than another path.
          I watched this documentary 13th Step… I think some of it was credible but most of it was garbage. Millions of people are sober because of AA and listening to some of the interpretations of the program from some of the people was ridiculous.
          I encourage anyone to read the literature of AA before making any judgements.
          And if one chooses a different path then that is awesome, just get help.

    • I accidentally came across this site! Been in AA over 2 years now. I don’t understand the viciousness at which AA is attacked. Is it because you were betrayed in some way? Thought there was an imminent graduation day ( there isn’t)? Or is it just you refusal to believe I a Higher Power?

      • You have much to learn young AA grasshopper. The interesting thing is you too will probably wake up one day and leave the cult of the AA corporation. You will see the truth and it will make you sick.

          • Wow. Just wow. These comments… So negative. So condescending. So self-righteous. Personally, I would much rather sit in a ‘patronizing’ AA meeting than in a room with this group, I am let down at the lack of class and respect, and acceptance…Do I dare say that word? For the record, I am not a regular member of AA but at one point in my life it saved my ass, gave me some great tools, and I made a couple of amazing friends. I took away some great things. And yes, there are some very twisted people in those rooms. Also in a bar, in my office, at my gym… They are everywhere. I am sorry you had a bad experience. And I cannot imagibe being raped especially at that loiny in my life when I was so vulnerable; I am truly sorry you experienced that and give you major kudos for speaking out about it. I just dont think it is safe to say all of AA is bad. I cannot stop wondering, where on earth were you going to meetings?? I do not know west LA, maybe my state is different, but your experience does not sound at all like the AA I know. I am sure there is corruption, shoe me one institution, establishment, or orgabization that isn’t. They point is it has saved lives. Even 5% is phenomenal in my opinion, when it came to life or death for most. I am always open to a better way; we should always be learning and growing and expandingand lear)

            • Which is exactly why I clicked on your blog. I respect your opinion towards AA; based on your experience that would indeed be your perception. I do not respect the condescending and insulting comments on this thread as it is not conducive to recovery, And here I read ppl say those are 2 big problems they have with AA wgile they themselves are doing it on this blog. And shit, now I am starting to do it as well… Lol, I guess I just hope to see more love and not so much arguing over who has the right program vs. who doesnt. Not any one of us has all the answers, we just need to respect what works for some and be compassionate towards thise whom it didnt work for (Such as I feel towards you) – I too look forward to keeping current with your content as you continue to release it, I hav enjoyed reading and viewing your work, and I hope you find some peace with your past. ❤

              • HI- There is no place on EARTH where criminals are sent- court ordered , like they are to AA.
                Kim you said ” we just need to respect what works for some and be compassionate towards thise whom it didnt work for ”

                Funy but that Has never happened in an AA meeting. When someone is saying it isnt working or they got drunk- they tell that person that THEY ARE WRONG and need to work the steps better, or get a lay person Untrained ” sponsor ” or be of more Service” .
                The facts are there are 7 other free options, The sinclair Method being one of the most effective new Ones…..Medication, Naltrexone and VIVitrol. SMART Recovery is growing quickly. MM is for some, Harm Reduction is the FAV along with Smart..using CBT and MI. Thanks for stopping by – but we have heard your criticism many times – this is a place where we get to say what we want… and we dont have to put up with AA members or AL ANON members— rhetoric. It is rhetorci. Evangelical religious garbage from the 1930’s/ It works for less then 5 % who go there. OUR voices are getting louder. You have many LOUD voices breaking your traditions…all over the place….so why do you care why we say on this little blog?

              • If you knew the posts that were written on here— that was so vile and nasty- IM tired of writing the same rebuttle. Its been since 2009 I have been blogging. I was in AA then. I get to express how I want here- I put up with enough AA sh*** to last a lifetime and more….

      • I just made the decision to leave AA. After 6 months in the program I just can’t take anymore. As for believing in a higher power, who I call God, I do believe and always have. That is one of the things that made AA so appealing to me. I was so wanting to return to my faith, but my alcoholism was keeping me from it. Now that I have renewed my relationship with God and give Him all the glory for my sobriety, I no longer wish to be a part of AA. They made me feel crazy. I was told to turn my will over to God (step 2) and that was not a problem for me. So that is exactly what I will continue to do. The rest of AA’s dogma is nothing more than brainwashing. They say if I don’t keep doing exactly as they say, then I will drink again and either end up in jail (which I’ve never been), in an institution,or dead. This is repeated over and over again. So that you become afraid for your life. How is that helping someone? No wonder there are so many people that committed suicide in AA. Oh,but they will say it was because that person was sick(which was what I was told by both sponsor I fiered)or couldn’t believe in a higher power, or couldn’t be honest. It’s just a bunch of bull to keep you under their control. I was also told I couldn’t stay sober by just my faith. I’m so sorry for you and all the others that have been victimized by AA. I am so grateful to God for opening my eyes and now I am happy, joyous and free!

        From ” Not A Dry Drunk”

        • HI and welcome to my site. I am so glad you let so quickly Lucky you can Google and find us. Years ago, I felt so alone when things went bad for me. I stayed many years. What A fool I felt like when I first left that I was so hoodwinked.

          Not anymore. Blog away and enjoy life.

      • @ Sharon-
        How did you “accidently” come across this site? Computers respond to events like “clicking” on a link which isn’t an accident. But let’s say your touch screen is super sensitive and you mistakenly clicked the link….. you obviously, with intention continued to click and scroll and even created an identity to type in your opinion. I think there’s more to you being on this site than an accident. Personally I found 14 years of AA and powerlessness led to an inclination to describe myself as blameless and not be accountable. I fear you have begun to do the same. It’s your choice but don’t say its an accident. I am glad I consciously left AA and moved towards a different way of being and thinking.

    • Hi Rick,

      The gambling Councillor wanted you and your wife to go to AA and Al-Anon – that says it all right there about how these programs have morphed into a ‘catch-all’ for everything – from everywhere.


  2. I know spj- I sat in court so many times these past 2 years. They are now calling them ….do you go to your 50 NA’s? Like they are M & M’s.

    • hahahaha… I know many a stepper Zelot who sneer every time someone says “AA classes”, or even worse is identifying as a “Alchoholic Addict”.. lol… then they blame the rehab industry for this problem.

      Neglecting to realize that that industry is ran by other stepper zelots… What A riot.

  3. I would like to introduce everyone to the 13th tradition.

    The 13th tradition is intended to combat the all too well known 13th step, which should not be going on in a place where some of the most vulnerable individuals have the hardest time staying clean.

    The 13th tradition
    “We as a community are all responsible for creating an environment which is safe and inviting, for everybody to recover in.”

    This tradition is to remind everyone that it is all of our responsibility to make sure we all feel safe and invited, leading to a conducive space for recovery to take place in.

    In the 1950’s, when they were creating the traditions, they didn’t have to worry about sexual predation in the meetings because they were all straight men. Now that the rooms are open up to all genders and sexual orientations it is important that we continually remind ourselves to keep one another accountable for misconduct and make sure everyone is being welcoming to others, no matter what their differences are.

    It is our responsibility as a community to assure that we are all safe and nobody is taken advantage of. Whenever people with different life experiences come together there, is bound to be issues. This 13th tradition will not solve all of those problems, but if it was on the wall, with the rest of the traditions, it would set a new tone in our atmosphere.

    I have spoken with a lot of people about the subject and many agree. What some people have to navigate around to find sobriety is all too often unnecessary. No other organization in the world could function now a days without a sexual harassment policy. It’s amazing that AA hasn’t been sued hundreds of time for this kind of misconduct by its members.

    • Wow, total fantasy.

      ” They didn’t have to worry about sexual predation”. Total fabrication and is easily contradicted by the early AA stories of allowing women in the rooms and the fact that Bill Wilson was a known sexual predator. And how do you know they were all straight men? You sound like you were there. But you weren’t and your fantasies are evident to those who really know. Club house rules on the wall mean nothing to the cadre of criminals in AA today.

      • I think the 13th tradition already exists…. and like the 13th step it is well known and practiced everywhere 12step groups exist. It is the unspoken tradition to cover up any sexual crime, by telling the victim not to come forward, by enforcing a code of silence, and a culture of denial.

  4. Hello- In the 1950’s yea there were women and yes they were being fucking hit on my Bill ASSole Wilson.

    Okay get out of your dream world in your fantasy land of old time AA unless you are 90 years old now….which I bet you are not.

    SO what is you point?

    There is no 13th tradition.

    What planet are you from. What city are you in. Please…

    Get real. Nice idea. Safety measures and polices are needed and they will be forced to make them by lawsuits. . But none exist at this time.

    • katie-mash
      on March 6, 2015 at 12:00 PM said:
      i have been in AA for three weeks and i have never self-medicated more. where do i start? my 1st temp-sponsor talked AT me for 3 hours straight about herself then said “i think we’ve got a good start on step one! my second 3-day sponsor was a verbally abusive mind-fuck telling me i think I’m better than everyone else and that i had BALLS asking her to please turn her t.v. down in the background so i could hear her. if i want to be this abused i’d invent a time machine and zoom back to jr. high school. give my emotional power up to these mind-fucking bullies? no thanks. i had more self-esteem before i walked into those rooms. then this oh-so-nice 76 year old gentleman reached out to me in a most caring way by asking me to breakfast, then suggested he could come over and help me get dressed! i then threw up in my nose. AA is a con with a bunch of blow-hards preaching their narcissistic bullshit. they are so welcoming until you ask them to sponsor you and then the daggers come out. their kids are all grown so now they need someone to fill the slot of being their scapegoat of abuse. FUCK YOU AA and all the asshole that road in on their horses that make it their be all, end all.

  5. you said It is our responsibility as a community to assure that we are all safe and nobody is taken advantage of.

    Yes. In American , if you are a volunteer at a non profit and you are raped, sexually harassed, financially scammed , murderd, child molested , by a senior person in the non profit , yes they are responsible.

    AA in NY is filled with AA employees who are covering things up.

  6. I would like to start out by saying that I believe this is a very important topic. Sexual predation should not be happening, and something needs to be done about it when it occurs.

    The 13th tradition is just one suggestion to try to move the culture of AA in the right direction. The culture of AA has changed very little since it was formulated by the men who created it. It is a patriarchal structure. Yes there were women who were around. And yes they were harassed. And yes my point still stands that nothing in the traditions asked anyone to do anything about it.

    I am from the twin cities. We have hundreds of 12 step meetings a week here. Most of the meetings I go to have adopted a sexual harassment policy that they announce at the beginning of the meeting, asking anyone who feels uncomfortable to tell a trusted servant. This, in essence, is the 13th tradition. Although, I think the onus falls on not just the victim but on everyone who witnessed the bad behavior.

    I am on your side. I am just trying to join the conversation and offer a suggestion of a 13th tradition. Please don’t talk to me disrespectfully.

    • If we are disrespectful, it is becasue we have all tried this. I have actually sat in a 12 step group with a so called “sexual harassment policy”, a 16 year old girl stood up and said that so and so was harassing her sexually, the trusted servants told her to be quiet.

      talked to her after the meeting, and did nothing. Did not even tell the guy to go away. As it was for his recoveries sake…..

      we have all tried this.

  7. Ok anthony, I saw your email last night.

    Glad to hear that you are doing this. Are you using my Make AA Safer Green Pamphlet?

    The thing about your ideas are that…well, let’s put it this way, there was a time too when I tried to re write the steps thinking that would help and I tried so many things as I moved away from AA internally while I was still attending lose last 4 years. I even tried to invent a NEW program.

    Sorry I was so hard on you , but you are not looking for help leaving and you obviously were not harmed… so why are you here? To tell us that somewhere in some state people are trying to make it safer? Okay …I get that. Thats a good thing!

    Thanks for telling us.

  8. I often wonder about leaving AA. I just haven’t found any other place populated quite like it. I find AA to be a good place to find others who are also looking for something else. I only go to a few groups, who, I believe, practice good principles. I just wish AA, as a whole, would be more progressive and adopt more of the evidence based practices we see working in the field of addiction recovery. I am just one, of many, who is trying to change the culture of AA into one that works for all, instead of the few we see there. If I leave, then I cannot help others find something more. I try to tell others not to believe all the hype and try to follow their hearts true path. This is just my choice to stay and help.

    Like you said, I have not been hurt by sexual predation in AA. My pain came from school as a child. I was sexually abused by my teacher for 3 years. No one around did or said anything about it. I ended up suing the school district with the law offices of Jeff Anderson and won. I know how important it is for vulnerable people to be safe in the places they seek help.

    I believe that the work you all are doing is very important and I look forward to seeing where it goes.

    I also would love to see the program that you have created as an AA alternative.


    • there is no program here.

      They already exist and I suggest if you are sincere to seek alternatives out and find one that meets your fancy and support that.

      I checked out the page linked to your name…. the 12 after 12 or whatever that was. You seem very invested in an AA Cult mindset. Not to be rude. But you certainly seem to be if that page was created by you.

      I would deprogram those ideas. and become normal again as a first step.

      • Yes. I am the founder of the 12 After 12. I am deeply invested in helping people have access to steps of empowerment and further spiritual development. We are also creating a community around these ideas. I would hope that our group learns from the mistakes of other groups. We never want our members to experience the pain that some of AA members have faced. This is why I am here. To learn. To ask me to abandon my life’s work is not going to happen.

        • Anthony

          Thanks for being polite, a lot of the 12 steppers we get here are anything but, so you will forgive us if we are a little skeptical … I appreciate what you are trying to do.

          The thing is many of us have been where you are, trying to change it from the inside, and we got nowhere, and worse than that we got ostracized and shamed by our AA groups, and a series of events (some as bad as you can imagine, some just borne of frustration and anger) more or less forced us to take the 12 steps to the door.

          I do hear you, but maybe go and check out SMART recovery and HAMS harm reduction and come back and share your impressions? I’d be interested (sincerely) to hear your view.

          I was in AA for 12 years and it turns out I’m not and never was an alcoholic, I now drink moderately quite safely (having a nice glass of merlot as I type, cheers!) and you would not believe (or maybe you would) the treatment I’ve got from friends I’ve known intimately for more than a decade. It appears they are incapable of speaking English and instead speak ‘programmese’ at me, it has been very tough trying to explain what’s happening for me. And what I can’t understand is, surely, they dont’ want someone who is NOT an alcholic to be putting all their energy into AA but they can’t hear me, all they can see is an apostate, it has been sobering (no pun intended) to be on the receiving end of their patronising, sanctimonious comments.

          I am a spiritual person, well actually leaning towards religion, and i’ve done a lot of research on AA now that I’ve left and what I found out was quite shocking. it is my personal belief that AA spirituality is corrupt and also incorrect. I have major problems with their view of God, and his intercessions.

          I appreciate you are trying to do the right thing, but seeing as you are here, on a leaving aa site, for people harmed by AA, at least try to see it from our point of view.

          Also, AA is big on contempt prior to investigation, just go and have a delve into the current science on addiction. People like John Hari, Stanton Peele, Lance Dodes, Charlotte Kasl, go and have a look and report back.

          I don’t think anyone is arguing that there are not good, sincere people in AA, I met a lot of them, however, for me, the whole structure and culture of AA itself (its ecosystem if you will) is geared up to feed abuse and protect abusers, and when you look at how AA WSO has behaved, it’s actually quite shocking and they are doing it with your dollars and in your name.

          I have no objections to AA continuing if it has a serious overhaul of itself (took its own inventory and made restitution for harms done) but I think this is ver unlikely to happen and if you do a bit of investigation you will find out why. Did you see ‘The Sober Truth’ on 48 hours? That would be a good first port of call.

          Best wishes


        • um.. I think you are very confused Anthony.

          “These steps are intended to provide new tools for spiritual growth. We do not suggest that the 12 after 12 can or should replace the original 12 steps in any manner. We know they work.”

          Wow, you know they work. Sorry , fantasy land. There is no proof in the aggregate that the 12 Steps are anything more than faith-healing nonsense and their application and resulting indoctrination is actually deadly for some and dangerous for many, if not most. Building on a foundation of religious nonsense will yield more of the same. How many people are you going to kill with this extension of fantasy? You are playing with people’s minds and lives. Wake up before you have blood on your hands. Maybe having someone kill themselves in your house will be ok for you. You can claim that they just didn’t see the spiritual magnificence of what you have created. They couldn’t get your way of life. Sound familiar?

          I read your site. It seems like just more wackadoodle woowoo bullshit.

          And I mean that in a loving, kind and spiritual way. ok, not.

          • it is funny as heck how many 12 step splinter cells have sprouted.

            The funniest thing as that they hate AA.

            But it does not occur to them that they should trash the whole thing and move on to something else.

            That is how the mind gets opened.

            • Further, they have no idea they have been practicing a specific form of religion now called Buchmanism. Any attempt to “build” an addition onto the creaky foundation of the AA house is just expanding Buchmanism. There is nothing wrong with wanting to expand “spirituality” ( whatever that really is) but it seems one should know what they are doing it with and why. Anthony doesn’t hate AA, and most likely doesn’t want to help others leave, he is here to promote his weebly gobbledygook.

  9. wonderfully informative site here!! Thanks for your kind welcome!! I’ve perused the posts with interest. I like what Rick said and agree. I never met such a “screwed up” bunch of people as those in AA or alanon. I had an insufferable “sponsor” who lived, ate and breathed AA rhetoric and all those dreadful slogans that she spouted ad nauseam or perhaps like a Stepford AA wife. Any questions or doubts were because you were still in denial or else a dry drunk. And HALT – oh give me a break. I did get angry at AA – and yes 13 steps. It happened all the time to people. I got to the point about a year into the program where I thought- would I choose any of these people for friends? I really only wanted to get on with my life not join a church. I never did 90 meetings in 90 days, I did have another life. They dangled that carrot of sublime serenity if you follow the steps which is b.s. I was expected to go to the meetings (AA socials and conventions – arghh. I did not tow the party line. When I left I had people phoning me telling me I was on the road to hell – so to speak and then I didn’t hear from any of them again.
    I am not an “alleluiah I’ve found salvation” type at all. Enlightenment can come slowly over the years and is still a work in progress. I have found some balance and a lot of fulfillment. Some days are joyful, some are peaceful, some are an agony!! That’s life!

    • I remember this – the expectation that AA becomes your life. Everything about AA sucks up so much time, time that could be spent doing other much more constructive things. It’s crazy how going to meetings, doing service work, talking to other AA people on the phone etc can suck up what little free time you have. I don’t’ miss any of this and I’m glad to be done with AA and I’m glad that today I decide how I want to spend my time. I get to decide what is important to me and what my priorities are. And regurgitating (sp?) Program BS in it’s many shapes and forms – funny, that is nowhere on the list of what I consider important and worth my time.

  10. I’ve been in A.A. for several years now, and value it mainly for the good friendships I have made. But I am definitely a heretic as far as the Program is concerned. I have come to question many points of A.A. dogma.

    For one thing, I don’t really believe people are either alcoholics or non-alcoholics, the same way they are either pregnant or not pregnant. I have a severe anxiety disorder (have had all my life), and I self-medicated with alcohol for many years. Now that I am sober, I haven’t the slightest desire to drink.

    A.A. drags understanding of human character down to the level of astrology. If we are alcoholics, then we have one boilerplate personality type. Those in the Program tend to think they can simply look at Page Number Whatever in the Big Book and find out all about people they’ve never even met. They’re like the old ladies in the Monty Python skit, sitting at the side of the road rifling through their Bible to find out how to fix their broken-down car. Only for them, it’s not the Bible but the Big Book that holds all the answers.

    If I’m dealing with an anxiety disorder–a mental health issue–then in my view, that’s what I need to concentrate on. People who tell me that I’m an alcoholic, so I must be this way or that, are dealing with me no more intelligently than people who tell me they know all about me because I’m a Virgo.

    I’m interested in learning more. Other than the social attachments I have made (to a few genuinely great people) in the Program, and the fact that I refuse to be rooked out of all my money by some other sort of treatment program (at least A.A. is affordable), I am willing to expand my horizons. I don’t like the feeling that I’ve joined a cult.

    • HI Lori and welcome! .
      I always hated that expression that everyone is the same if they are “alcoholic” .

      Some would say well you know how we are ? And this was said if people were just late for something.


      • My therapist is trying to convince me to leave A.A. She has a son in the Program, and she can’t even talk with him anymore. Program dogma just gets in the way.

        The whole subject is very interesting to me–the conflict, the struggle for power, the P.R. battle. I’m a writer, and I want to explore mental health issues (from the lay perspective) more deeply. I used to think that A.A. was better than nothing at all, but it’s beginning to seem, to me, that A.A. is making matters worse rather than better.

  11. If there exists a community, a program, a way out of the horrendous torture of alcohol addiction and dependence, why create such a fuss over it? AA has no monopoly on recovery and this is expressed by Bill Wilson and just about every old timer in the program. If you belong to a golf resort, a billiards club, a bridge club, there’s always going to be some creepy old man trying to get into some woman’s pants. You’re making an argument about the nature of some men and condemning AA for it. It’s childish. I’ve seen people walk through the doors broke, hopeless, on the verge of death, riddled with self doubt and despair, and I’ve seen them work the steps and get involved with AA and have seen then reclaim there lives. So it doesn’t work for everyone. I mean, do you really want to spend your free time dogging other people? Dogging something that doesn’t jive with your personal philosophy? I’m a gay man; do you expect me to spend the hours of my waking life condemning and speaking poorly of religious institutions full of people who want me dead? Doing that would be a waste of my sobriety and of my life. Mind your own business. If you’ve got a problem with something, change it if possible. If not, move on.

    • Thank you for the scolding and good orderly direction there Danny boy. I think the folks on here are in the middle of trying to change things they believe are wrong, so I guess this whole effort is ok with you then, eh? Picking a single example while ignoring the horrendous amount of damage the nonsensical religious program of AA inflicts on more people than it “helps” is laughable and naïve and is in no way related to your gayness card. Nice try though, but your arguments are old and tired to those of us who have been doing this a while.

      • SPJ- great rebuttal. I will leave it at that and leave his ridiculous condescending post up for a few more hours. He will be deleted if he posts again his bullying comments.

        Additional comment- Gee the Catholic Church and its charities have helped so many. I loved going to a Catholic school when i grew up. so any exposing of pedophilia with Priests and them moving them around and covering of it up…is just so umm…so silly…pray tell….

      • You are hypocritical,because you are picking your negative experiences while ignoring the positive changes AA HAS made in SOME people’s lives. Seriously, WTF do you all go to meetings? Lol

    • danny,
      after reading your post i now know for sure that you and people like you. are wrong. and the people here are right.
      you need help kid..
      your obviously mentally ill. and also you have dogged religouse institutions in your post.we all know at first and throughout in AA we are told it is the only way do it or die..most if not all who go there are told this i was often.
      and if you read my posts you would see i dont condem AA for what the majority in AA do..ABUSE! and rape and sexual violence are more than a man trying to get sex with a woman.didnt you know this perhaps you didnt child..
      but kid you know you must be questioning it yourself if your here.we all know your just a scared little boy..thats why your angry at us and resent us..its just fear child.
      I feel sorry for some of those broke homeless men and women that turned to AA for help and ran terrafied from its clutches because of bad threatment there
      .the thousands of lives lost because of those in AA who are abusers.when they could have been saved some other way..since AA isnt the only way.
      And the people like you who help to make that happen.the dishonest liars in AA who have no understanding of others
      need to grow up.

  12. Wow, Danny has a problem. He’s in grave danger of turning into a mindless droid.

    If he really believes that absolutely everyone in every church wants him dead, then he needs intensive psychiatric help. I’ve been out as a lesbian for 17 years, never left my Christian faith and never felt the need to. How unjust Danny is to the many, many, many fine people in the churches–a rapidly growing number–who love and accept LGBT people just as we are.

    I’ll probably remain in A.A., too. But I like this website, and I’d like to see the film. It doesn’t threaten me to hear criticisms of the program, because I can understand where those who have such criticisms are coming from. The people in A.A. need to THINK. A droid mentality is deadly. Humanity can’t possibly flourish under mindless, sheeple-like conditions. It quite possibly may not even survive if too many come to think in such a way.

    I’ll be back to this site often, because I’m interested in what I read here. I’m a maverick in A.A., and there are people in the program who (like Danny) can’t stand such sacrilege. But I will always think for myself, and I enjoy hearing a variety of opinions. The commenters here, for the most part, seem like great folks. And they are raising some crucial issues about A.A.

    Those questions need to be answered. By all means, please keep asking them! Keep on challenging and questioning. The health of humanity depends on independent thought.

  13. I was required to attend AA for 3 years. I loved many of the people in my group but was always uncomfortable with some aspects of AA due to my experience with growing up in a religious cult. After the required period I continued to attend for about a year, but I just don’t feel I can keep up the act any longer. How do I respond to the “concern” that AA friends express over my decreasing attendance? I just don’t feel that I can keep going and saying the things I know I’m expected to say, when I don’t believe a word of what I’m saying. I feel like a hypocrite. I am so thankful for the people I met in AA and I don’t want to hurt them. I would love to remain friends but I don’t think they will want to stay in touch after I “leave the fold”, so to speak. I don’t think AA did anything for my sobriety, I credit my therapy and mindfulness techniques for that. Like I said I was “required” to attend AA. I know for sure I don’t want weekly meetings to be a part of my life, I have no desire to drink and am happy. How do I tell the kind people in AA I appreciate their concern but I’m done with AA?

    • only 1 stayed friends with me..after i left he tryed to use me for sex.
      and the friendship ended with him txing me nasty messages.

      i left 3 yr ago and have only been to a sprinkling of meetings since.
      i did a lot of AA and steps i went for 12 yrs .
      i wish i had left a long time ago,because now i find it difficult to mix in the real world with all people.the only folk im ok around are here.
      however i work on that now instead of step work.

      your sober and dont want to drink..so it would be a good time to leave..leave sober.

      the fact we find it so hard to leave says a lot around the brainwashing cult.

      all the best xxx

  14. Hi Joy- How bout- that’s not for me anymore. I have moved on…..

    Why do their feelings matter so much? Why are they more important then the truth and you have said it here. You can go live your life.

    They will not remain your friends. Its a false sense of intimacy in ALL AA meetings. I have a handful after 36 years and so does my husband. Very few ever call. We are like the plague.

    We are free . We are normal. They are the weird ones . Im glad I don’t have to sit in rooms with them anymore. Yea some are fine…but why tolerate all the mentally ill weirdo’s, rude, mean ….other nut jobs.

    • why do we have to explain to them at all..I was the same as joy though at 1 time.
      when a cult member leaves the fold they become outcasts.
      i no longer care..yeh nut jobs!

  15. I’m certainly interested in efforts to help and advocate on behalf of those suffering from mental health issues of all sorts. Many of the people in A.A. really belong in some other type of organization, that would help them better because it would be better-suited to their needs. To be treated like boilerplate, Big Book-defined “alcoholics” when they’re really not is worse than unhelpful. It is quackery.

    However–and this is important–some of the organizations most critical of A.A. are those that hope to make money off of these people. Most–not all. I’m interested in hearing more about organizations that aren’t simply trying to kneecap A.A. because they want to make money off of its members.

    A.A. trolls tend to claim that ANYONE who criticizes the Twelve-Step program must automatically be guilty of doing that. I doubt that very much. But there are, indeed, enough rich people and big corporations out there shearing the flock for the sake of a buck. Unless the critics of A.A. are willing to honestly deal with this matter, A.A. will continue to bring in people who aren’t alcoholics. People who will be given the boilerplate treatment that is so unhelpful to them.

    I suspect that many here have had that experience, and that it is why they have so much anger toward A.A.

    • I disagree. There are just other organization that have a different model. AA is being hurt by it’s own model that fails the majority of it’s members.

      People want evidenced based help not a religious cult.

    • Lori- I don’t agree with much of what you say here and how you are saying it…also how this relates to leaving AA or needing help leaving.

      So why are YOU here?

      Please find another forum. This is not a forum to discuss ideas about rehab and mental health and the billion dollar rehab industry with someone who thinks AA is great. We all know what AA is and what it is not.

      • So you olnly want people on herehere that are 100% AA haters? Did it ever occur to you maybe some of these ppl are confused about AA and are browsing your blig hoping to establish their own answers? I would think a woman with your credentials would be a much better leader. Your comments could most likely turn people away from you, when I believe you posted this blog to get a message out and help others that are questioning or struggling with AA? I truly hope you continue to work on your healing for horrible things that have happened to you. I agree with a lot of what you said in this post, but your approach to people who most likely come here because theyvare list in their recovery is in my opinion, sad.

    • we get over the anger eventually. its taken me, the most part of 3 yrs.
      but i like pulling the trolls when they are here.it gives me joy and happiness..

      just as it gave them joy to do what they did to me.

      its the trolls that are angry.i give back to them what they gave to me,better they get it than inocent folk not of aa.Also they need to see where they are wrong.see there part in things.just as they said i had to see my part in things..

      if its good enough for the aa trolls ,then its good enough for me.
      whats good for the goose is good for the gander..we are all equal.

      if they cant take it they shouldnt dish it out.

      besides i have nothing else to do because of my going to AA i can no longer mix with society.

      so i dedicate some of my time to help the cause.if im going to help anyone these days i would rather help someone to get out of AA now than help someone get in it.

  16. It is our main goal to Stop AA coercion from Courts.

    Another main goal is to stop extortion into AA by the FAA, aka Pilots, BOA, Nurses, and Doctors and Lawyers. The HIMS Program is a farce and disgusting.

    AA would shrink by 60 -70 % if this would happen.

    if this was a cult i would rather be in it than the last one.

  18. {Sigh} finally, I believe I may be among like-minded people! After seemingly banging my head up against the proverbial wall for just over a year I have come to realise that the culture of AA is to blindly follow doctrine, and to do, suggest, or even question otherwise produces anything varying from monotonous cliché-driven responses right through dismissiveness to downright anger and hostility.

    To clarify my stance, I do not believe that abstinence is the only way, and that opinion, coupled with the fact that I am not particularly religious, has made for some interesting interactions ‘in the rooms’.

    I have been told I am ‘in denial’, that opposing opinions ‘are my addiction talking’, that ‘I’m intellectualizing my way back to relapse!” etc., etc. My wife, after suffering a minor relapse was verbally chastised by her ‘sponser’ to the extent that she was a nervous wreck for a week afterwards, and upon returning to our local meeting for support was told that she should ‘just think that if you relapse again, your children will be taken away and you will be thrown in jail!’ In case you were wondering, those closing words of wisdom were offered by a male individual with over 10 years sobriety who was completely oblivious to the reasons why every single one of his sponsee’s had relapsed over the years. Although in his constant professings this was due to the fact they weren’t ‘working the program’ definitely not, god forbid, any of his shortcomings!

    What also amazed me was the constant reference to a ‘proven track record’ which my, albeit not extensive, research I failed to uncover… I have found many references to the lack of it. Indeed I found somewhere that the success rates in AA for staying sober (if that is your goal), is exactly the same if you did nothing at all! And you don’t need to be constantly bashed over the head with a big book that has no other claim other than it was written by church going drunkard 75 years ago!

    Oh it feels good to get that all off my chest!!! Thank you!

    • hello.they will say that you think your too clever.no thats not it.i forget.
      They knock inteligence.but i have forgot the exact thing they reapeated around that.
      inteligence gets us drunk all that stuff.

      • Oh that slogan. I forgot what it was too. FWIW, it’s here in Orange’s site. http://www.orange-papers.org/orange-not_good.html . It’s under no. 9.

        AA wants you to outsource your thinking to it, so that it’s doing your thinking for you and gets you to give it the credit for doing so. And of course it threatens you with doom should you reclaim it. And washes its hands of you should you go on a bender.

        And yet courts and employers send far too many people (even 1 person is too many) into this insanity.

        Something’s rotten here.

    • found it through the link.
      they will say things like this to you.

      Quit your stinkin’ thinkin’.
      Your best thinking got you here.
      Take the cotton out of your ears and put it in your mouth.
      Keep It Simple, Stupid!
      Sit down, shut up, and learn something.
      People don’t care how much you know, until they know how much you care.
      Nobody is too stupid to get the program, but some people are too intelligent.
      He is suffering from terminal uniqueness.
      Utilize, Don’t Analyze!
      Bill Wilson just oozed condescension and superiority when he criticized those people who chose to think for themselves:

      To the intellectually self-sufficient man or woman many A.A.’s can say, “Yes, we were like you — far too smart for our own good. … Secretly, we felt we could float above the rest of the folks on brain power alone.”

        • MAYBE You should apply them- by

          stop being so judgemental- How about OPENING your mind that AA is not the only game in town, that other avenues work better for most and ….

          How about you respect other people’s boundaries. This is my blog. Go create your own or go on ROWDY RUM on FACEBOOK and stroke each others back….how great AA is. We dont like AA any more….move along troll.

          • Just to be clear I mean Kimberly.

            You can’t reason with these idiots. They count on ppl talking civilly with them. Then they can just keep sticking in their passive aggressive bullshit.

            if some aa person texts me or calls me or I see one…. I give em both barrels, one hundred percent fuck you. If you know the truth or heard it, and you still stay, then you are a dangerous cancer on society and should be dealt with as such.

            Reply to me Kimberly. Email my contact info. Love to tell you more about how I feel.

            Otherwise go hide under your rock until 7pm or whatever. I know I said kill yourself, but what’s the point? You died long ago, now we listen to you speak like belches from a grave.

            Share this tonight with your fellow corpses.

              • HI Chris – I know that many of them are very frustrating and some are even mean and bullies and Rapists and Killers. So THanks for posting. Are you on FACEBOOK in any anti AA group yet ?

                • I don’t do Facebook. I was a little fired up there, but it’s hard not to be. They come across like nazis or kkk members. Frightening, delusional, morons. It’s hard to resist going in on em.

                  I quit after 2 years, I never got a sponsor or read the book. No prayers no god. Tried and tried and had a few progressive (I thought) friends. Eventually at a meeting someone jus started screaming all kinds of shit at a few ppl during a meeting. I stood up and said what the fuck are you saying? And they all looked at me and went shhhh. I told em that if I’m the one who should be quiet they’re all fucked and fuck you. And then I left. That was in January. After leaving someone asked me why I went and I could not answer. The best I could think was I was desperate at the start and I made friends and liked some girls there. Thing was girls so obviously damaged I never tried with any. So what’s the point ?

                  After leaving I lost basically every supposed friend but two. And I realized it was all meaningless the entire duration. I’m happy I got out.

                  When you think back you can’t remember any specific meetings because nothing at all ever happened.

                  I’m grateful to Aa for keeping a whole bunch of idiots rounded up and out of ppls way.

  19. I share everyone’s objections to AA, so I won’t repeat them here. However, something no one has mentioned is all the money the AA General Service Board rakes in. And for doing what exactly? They don’t get involved at the local level….or any level that I know of. They don’t ‘change’ anything in the program. Meetings, conventions, etc. are arranged for and run by members. They do arrange for publishing and distribution of literature, which they sell at cost.

    Think about how many meetings are held every day. In my averaged sized city alone there are probably 100. Most attendee’s give a buck. Part of that buck does go for rent, coffee, etc, part goes to support the Intergroup Office….and then a chunk goes to the GSB.

    For each group, we aren’t talking about a lot of money, annually, and the GSB only gets a percentage, so no one thinks much about it. But do the math….and keep in mind that the secrecy and anonymity could prevent an accurate audit of contributions. Their not-for-profit 990 report shows a 2013 income of about $10 million.

    Well, I don’t know, and I’m just speculating….but it seems to be a perfect setup for a major scam. And who but a scam artist could have thought this up? I’ll bet AA was a major inspiration for L. Ron Hubbard…..

    • Since you are on the financial trail, another aspect that is overlooked as well is all the organizations that are in the downline. An IRS search reveals over 300 non-profits with “Anonymous” in the title


      Then, if you do more digging, you will find some of these rake in serious bucks on their own.

  20. I had a look at the taxes of several groups in the past and what I found particularly interesting was what they explained themselves to be. One called themselves a ‘Youth Group’ because it was a ‘Young Ppl meeting’. There was no mention of recovery from anything. I found this deception fascinating and quite possibly a doorway for accountability for safety.

    If a group is geared towards minors/ young ppl then isn’t there an expectation of standard safety measures to be in place when dealing with ‘young ppl’?

    Anyways…. Have a close look at the wording of how the groups describe their function in order to qualify for tax exempt status.


    • Come to think of it, how does a profitable publishing company become a non-profit anyway? They aren’t printing religious books are they? Life long healthcare benefits and pensions from a publisher with monetary assets. How does that work?

  21. Hello,

    I would like to register myself, but I did not find the respective button.
    My name is Julia , I am from Germany and I also made horrible experiences with AA (I also became a victim of a predator).

    Thanks and kind regards,

    • Hi Julia- Welcome. You can register but also just blog.

      Would you like to tell me what happened ? In a private email or on the blog for support? Sorry this happened. Its happening all over the place.

  22. I joined AA a year and a half ago and found it to be a good experience. The steps are a basic guide for good living, but not gospel. I am highly successful without DWI’s and arrests. Married for almost 20 years with kids who love me. However, I am constantly told my ego is out of control from AAer’s. I hear, let go of ego; replace it with God conscious. Have any of these folks ever taken Psych 101? The ID, EGO and SuperEGO should be developed into good health. I have decided to step away from AA as I am tired of being around people who dwell in the past while expecting a miracle. I have been told I am not doing my part in giving back what was freely given me because I won’t hire within the walls of AA. I will say this, I have met some really good people but I simply can’t stand to listen to other’s play the pity party anymore!

    • Amen to that Flip! You should not have to hire AA members to be accepted and everything else you say is spot on. Staying clean and sober is not as complicated as they make it seem. Yes it is important to stay sober (if that is your choice) but there are many other ways to do so without having to ‘turn your will and your life over to the care of God as you understand him’.

      Nor do you have to ‘help the suffering alcoholic’ to remain sober – that’s just AA’s way of keeping bodies in the room and money in the basket.


  23. Funny… I have not been to a meeting since Tuesday, Nov 3 and have had 4 calls looking for me, 2 asked if I was drinking. AA’s success rate (bodies + revenue) are dependent on the failure of it’s members. One told me it is a matter of time and he hopes I don’t end up in jail or dead. I just thanked him and got off the phone.

  24. I’m a Certified Public Accountant and had a terrific addiction to alcohol for almost 10 yrs. I’ve done lots of research on AA and NA and there seems to be enormous executive comp. for both of these organizations. My question is why??? What do they do?

    Also AA has received grants which is a violation of there tradition not to accept outside contributions. They seem to operate under the radar on purpose to keep filling their pockets. I’ve been to hundreds and hundreds of meetings at various places. Poor saps keep shuffling in. Courts, doctors, etc. mandate meetings and don’t know very much about the programs. These are by definition Secret Societies and that makes them very suspicious to me!!!!!

    There ain’t no opportunity in these programs!!!!!!!!!! A good idea w/o an opportunity is a long-shot and a long-shot w/o a good idea is a tragedy. I’m working on something to completely change that!!

    Adios, so long, good luck!!!!

      • We certainly do. When i was looking at the tax forms for one aa ‘young ppls’ group – it called itself a youth group. No mention of aa. How can that be legal?


  25. I’m really wanting human connections on this issue with plenty of experience of my own and a desire to learn from yours. I think support is important and that’s not really available by this means, is it?… reading and leaving little bumper sticker opinions, eh? AA gave me something to do and like the church world, I was incessantly having to reconcile the bullshit with my primary humanism. Oy vey, is that the understatement of the year! I could write a tome on that alone. Well… it’s been water under the bridge for many years. It’s not so fresh and I’m not so angry or currently hurt as so many I read here are. I do know the feeling though. The place is a haven for sociopaths and psychopaths, con artists of every description… predators, emotional sadists… mini-cults and extreme examples of pretty much, every human failing. You can’t fix something, if you’re unable to admit that it’s broken. Their fascistic loyalty is mind boggling. Their minds are truly “turned off.”

  26. You made some good points, in reference to the anger or hurt, I think that there is a certain process much like the stages of loss that individuals may experience, upon having a personal epiphany in leaving aa. I certainly agree that I was at that place this time last year as I found my way round different sites. I was astonished and relieved that other people had the same kind of views and experiences as I did, which in all likelihood would have been deemed stinking thinking had I mentioned it to sponsor etc. Over time and using a bona fide counsellor I specifically went in order to de-program. I even said that was what I wanted. Suffice to say I learnt more and let go of more than I did in around 2 years on and off of aa attendance and working those steps to the best of my ability. Over the time I have had there is no question I needed help with my drinking and I could answer around 85% of the 12 aa questions about my drinking hence a desire to seek help. I am better now in all areas of life and by choice I have a drink or two here and there, of course this was not a decision taken lightly but again I find myself not succumbing to the fictional and unproven allergy. AA’s approach in my opinion simply pathologises any thinking and when life throws you lemons its the fault of not working the program but at once will take credit when the going is good, good ol circular logic in action. I could go on and on ad inf…you get the picture though. As it says in the BB any “business that fails to take it’s own inventory is doomed to go bust”, or words to that effect. Even timers lament the fragmentation and loss of identity AA once had. It is this superciliousness and seeming resistance to change that perhaps turns alot of people back out after just one meeting..oh and the list of archetypes you posted too that probably doesn’t help either.

  27. AA has always been optional – and FREE. It has millions of members world-wide who have saved their lives by attending – of their volition. The only requirement for AA membership is a desire to stop drinking. You’re now blaming AA for the low life criminals that our judges mandate to the program? And use your heads people. CALL OUT THE JUDGES. CALL OUT THE DRS. AND PROFESSIONALS WHO WASH THEIR HANDS OF THE CRIMINALS BY PASSING THEM ONTO TO SOMEONE OR SOMEPLACE ELSE.

    • It starts by AA asking them not to be sent. It starts by AA members at group using their group conscience thingy to decide as Big AA don’t care about you at all. Lead by example and the problem will be solved. The burden of responsibility lies with AA only. We are merely pointing out what is wrong with AA, so others can make informed decisions. Use your head Holly, you’re best thinking got you here.

    • Holly – AA is embedded with AA and its members. You can do the research. We already have.

      Holly said “The only requirement for AA membership is a desire to stop drinking.” Nope not true.
      Here is the scenario, If you are a pilot and nurse and a doctor and go to your Human Resources and say – “Hey ..I need some help” They will send you down a road that is filled with AA and extortion that will make your head spin. The FAA sends — FORCES Pilots to AA rehabs, AA meetings, AA psychiatrists, and years of AA meetings as if it were a professional organization.

      Then the Board Of Nursing send Nurses to AA meetings for 5 years 3 times a week. They treat the public—- untrained and non professional AA Sponsors like they are therapists. I guess the Head Board of Nursing is a stepper too. This has been going on unknown to many good AA members and unknown to these high level professionals since the 1970’s.

    • Also Holly- AA in NYC knows and sells more then 50 % of its literature to NON AA members. People WHo DON’T WANT to go there. Also against your stupid 1950 traditions…which btw are not laws. Nor are they regulations.

  28. I have been in recovery for 3-1/2 years and I am grateful for my overall experience in the program of AA; however, I just watched The Sober Truth (On Demand) and I am deeply disturbed. I googled Monica Richardson and made my way to this blog. So much of what I am reading here is relevant and resonates with me, particularly in reference to mentally ill individuals in the rooms. There are lots of them and it can be quite uncomfortable. I never truly thought about the misdirection of these individuals into AA. I’m processing this all and my head is spinning. Glad to be a part of this forum.

  29. Hi Rachelle- and welcome- yes be very careful who you mix with there. I could write more for you but I have to go to bed to be up at 5 am again , Ill write more soon.

    Thanks for stopping by and please read all you can on the truth about AA. Google Gabrielle Glaser and The Atlantic Piece.

    • Interestingly, I had already read that particular article several months ago. I also- prior to recovery- read a book entitled “Smashed”, wherein the author never truly submits to the notion of being an alcoholic. I am definitely a seeker and love to read. I don’t plan to necessarily “leave AA”, but I am very open-minded and wish to continue to grow in my spiritual journey, wherever that leads. Simply put, I will do what I need to do when I need to do it and will follow guidance from my Higher Power (as opposed to an organization). Ya know what I mean?

  30. I left AA after 14 years. Now i am trying to live a peaceful, meaningful life, on the outskirts of a tribe I did not belong in… I don’t want to be a part of a group that needs such a strong language of sameness. But I am still finding my way, post-cult. I still love many of the people there, I’m not dead or dying, I had a half of a beer today and I still live next door to what they call the Rooms. They need me to be suffering without them. But I’m not, at least not the way they think. And, it is true that bonds with other homo sapiens seem to keep me healthy. Theirs are not the bonds I trust, anymore. They cut me off so I don’t get much healing from that world. Their healthy, accepting, warm, bonds are only there for people who’re totally abstinent. But my moderate drinking is kinda reliant on healthy bonds with other humans, too, I think, at least in part. So I come to this community, and tell you to check my blog, https://cultdrama.com/, and I hope you;ll leve a comment. E-bonds are ok with me. Post-AA, here we go.

    • HI CULT DRAMA- WELCOME ! WELCOME ! I like what I just read and I relate. I Left in 2011. I drink very moderately naturally too.

      I had 36 years in that hell hole that stole my 20’s…. all of them. Finally when I got into Acting school, came to LA , bought a triplex in Hollywood at age 29 got married to not a kool aid drinking man ( I am a woman )( sorry I chose Massive as my blogger name long ago to throw people off that I am female. )…and had my first child, then had therapy, I pulled away from AA externally. It makes me sad still sometimes that I wasted so much time, energy and years with their sh**T. But I’m not dead yet and get happy to find more of us.
      I will most definitely read your blog.

      • I wasted 5 years in AA because I thought it had Christian roots only to find that nothing could be farther from the truth. I was initially love-bombed to get hooked into it so I thought maybe they had the joy of Christ. All cults do that. My 2 sponsors were evil. They lied, played mind games, were jealous acting and did hurtful acts. The other group members were terrible too. I dated a couple men there. I know I was the object of gossip. The other men sexually harassed me and other women there. Bill W. was into the occult and took LSD. Not to mention 13-stepping and stealing BB profits. The Oxford group did automatic writing and had Nazi connections. What I experienced was cognitive dissonance. I had a strong belief in a false reality.I couldn’t stay sober in AA because of all the drama and poor quality of people I associated with. Doing good now.

        • Hi Susan – welcome ! Glad you are doing well and have moved on. Sorry to hear all the hurtful drama. AA is filled with it.

        • I am sober 20 years due to the selfless sponsors and the wonderful miracle of AA. My life and the lives of my family are forever changed due to the principles of this God Centered program. Where there are human beings, you will find corruption, greed and lust. It exists virtually “everywhere”. The recent article about the 13th step has failed to cite the millions of people who have been “saved” but instead focuses on the very few real bad apples. Not an accurate reporting of the facts. I’m all for some AA guidelines that strongly suggest and warn against men sponsoring women and vice versa. All of us in the program, who follow it, know that only same sex sponsoring is “healthy”. I would love to see more protection for the newcomer.

          • Tony- have you considered that you helped yourself? I had nice sponsors – treated me like their daughter – yet still at times they gave me very bad advice when it came to my mental health . ..talking to me about trauma as a child etc. They are not therapists, they are not marriage counselors and so they made many mistakes and in fact it was not till I saw a Phd that things got better for me although I was abs for decades on my own free will.

            Now – about the millions you say AA has helped- Ok AA has helped many – it also has HUrt millions – millions who were forced their by the Courts, by a rehab , Pilots by the FAA, Nurses by the BON – Doctors by their PHP program, Lives RUINED Forever.

            Maybe you are unfamiliar with this Practice – a violation of all these folks Civil rights.

            Im glad to hear you are all for safety policies – right ? So dont you want the world to know how dangerous AA really is and can be ?

  31. Pingback: Roads to #Addiction #Recovery – Here we go again! | Dave's Bankside Babble

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