Aftercare takes place following the completion of a drug/alcohol rehabilitation program. Each aftercare is designed to help the completing client to extend recovery beyond the safe confines of the initial treatment program. While the drug and alcohol counselor helps in crafting the client’s aftercare, the client has an equal say in what will be included in it. Likely to be a part of every aftercare are relapse prevention actions, individual and/or group counseling, and placement in a sober living environment. For many, the single most important part of aftercare is regular attendance and participation in twelve step meetings.

The reason for this is because the vast majority of people in recovery consider their twelve step program work the cornerstone of their recovery. In a twelve step program, we learn to take a series of simple steps, and the action of doing each step servers to promote and strengthen our recovery. 

We begin by admitting we suffer from the disease of addiction and that our lives had become unmanageable. Then we begin to consider that help for us could come in the form of a power greater than ourselves, and then make a decision to let that higher power help us to recover. Next we took a thorough inventory of our character flaws and shared this inventory with our sponsors. We next make amends to those to whom we’d caused harm and then strengthen our connection to our higher power through prayer and meditation. Finally, we become sponsors ourselves in the 12th Step, guiding others in how we got and stayed sober through our twelve step work.

Twelve step meetings are gatherings of people who belong to a particular twelve step recovery group. There are nearly as many twelve step groups as there are types of addiction. Alcoholics Anonymous is the largest of these fellowships and its original members were responsible for creating the first twelve step program. 

Some twelve step meeting attendees are not yet clean and sober, while others have been recovered for a great many years. The purpose of these meetings is to provide a place for fellowship members to connect with each other and share about their experiences in twelve step recovery. The most important goal of every meeting is to help the newcomer get and stay clean and sober.

It makes a lot of sense, then, that twelve step meetings should be a big part of any aftercare. Many of us in recovery have tried to stay clean and sober on our own, and it just didn’t work for us. But by being part of a twelve step fellowship, and by regularly attending and participating in that fellowship’s meetings, we found that long term recovery was not only possible, but practically guaranteed—if we were willing to do the step work. 

If you are ready to begin the recovery process, please call Alta Loma Recovery at 866-457-3843 today. Join others who have begun living a new and recovered life.