First, let me say that I unabashedly love and live a 12-step program of recovery as outlined in the first 103 pages of the book "Alcoholics Anonymous."
The trouble with 12-step today is that most people who go to meetings don't follow the program as it was originally written. In fact, many rely on the strength of slogans and social meetings to keep them sober, or to excuse slips and relapses.
When AA was founded in the last century, people recovered. Past-tense. From a seemingly hopeless state of mind and body. They didn't replace one dependence (on alcohol) for another (on the group meetings) like we sometimes see today. They found a God they could trust, and stopped side-stepping the realities of life.
100 men and women agreed on a single solution to the problem of alcoholism. Think about how significant that is. It's hard to get 10 people to agree on anything - much less 100 to say that this path worked for all of us. If you want what they had, you have to do what they did. Most people in 12-step meeting rooms have never even read the first 103 pages of the textbook of Alcoholics Anonymous. They read the slogans on the wall, and use the meetings like a social support or diet group.
What happened? The sick outnumbered the well. In the beginning, two recovered alcoholics would carry the message of hope and healing to one drunk. As the fellowship grew, there were 20 sick to every one recovered person in a meeting. Within a few years, that ratio grew to 80:1.
God as you understand Him became a lesser god as you create him. It became a case of 'majority rule', and the traditions were designed to keep those 80 in line. Over time, the courts began to mandate attendance as a condition of probation (which increased the numbers of sick in the meeting rooms exponentially) and the God of all creation became a thing of the past. People began to view the group as god, or whatever inanimate object they imagined.
Recovery rates plummeted. From the 50-75% recovery rates purported by the first 100 men and women who pioneered AA to the recent dispute over the 5% recovery rate that is no better than placebo, you only need to attend a meeting and look around the room to see what's happening. How many people do you know in those meetings who are happy, joyous, and free from obsession?
Today, the statistics for recovery from addiction are bleak. Since 90% of treatment centers use the 12-step model, and unlike anonymous meetings they do track and publish recovery data, an 83% fail rate is what the American approach to addiction treatment has given us.
There IS a solution! We did not emerge from our family systems with a complete set of tools to navigate life successfully. It's nobody's fault, we just didn't.
The Fast Track Addiction Recovery System™ works with clients at three levels: