We suggest that you encourage your clients to try Al-Anon, even if they minimize the problem with alcohol. The 2021 Al-Anon membership survey shows that 40% of newcomers who first came to Al-Anon because of a loved one’s drug addiction and later came to better understand the seriousness of that person’s alcohol problem only after attending Al-Anon for a period of time. No advance notification or written referral is necessary to attend an Al-Anon or Alateen meeting. Anyone affected by someone else’s drinking is welcome to attend. There are no dues or fees for membership.

Al-Anon

  • Is for families and friends of alcoholics
  • Is a separate fellowship from Alcoholics Anonymous (AA)
  • Al-Anon is based on the Twelve Steps and Twelve Traditions adapted from AA
  • Is compatible with professional treatment

Alateen

  • Is part of the Al-Anon fellowship designed for the younger relatives and friends of alcoholics through age 19
  • Members conduct their own meetings with the guidance of an Al-Anon members who are Alateen group sponsors
  • Follows the same Twelve Steps, Twelve Traditions, and Twelve Concepts as Al-Anon

Al-Anon and Alateen groups and members do not:

  • Give advice
  • Indulge in gossip or criticism
  • Discuss members’ religious beliefs, or lack of them
  • Endorse or oppose any cause, therapy, or treatment

Al-Anon/Alateen members are helped when they:

  • Attend meetings on a regular basis
  • Make telephone contact with other members
  • Read Al-Anon/Alateen literature
  • Have another Al-Anon/Alateen member as a sponsor
  • Apply the Twelve Steps of recovery to their lives
  • Become involved in Al-Anon/Alateen service work

Visit a meeting

Professionals may attend “open” Al-Anon meetings. An open Al-Anon meeting welcomes members and prospective members and allows attendance by people who are not families and friends of alcoholics but who are interested in learning about Al-Anon Family Groups.

Anyone is welcome to visit an “open” meeting. This will be designated as “Families, Friends, & Observers Welcome” on the meetings page of the Al-Anon MA website. Closed meetings are limited to members and prospective members, giving them the freedom to share and listen to the experience, strength, and hope of one another on a confidential and anonymous basis.

Anonymity

Al-Anon is an anonymous fellowship. This means that anyone attending a meeting is asked to keep confidential the identities of individuals seen and everything shared in the meeting.

We always protect our members’ anonymity, but the Al-Anon and Alateen program is not anonymous. We encourage the spreading of information about the availability of Al-Anon and Alateen meetings.

Resources

To speak to someone about Al-Anon in Massachusetts, contact the office Monday–Friday, 9:00–4:00. Call (508) 366-0556 or
email afgofma@aol.com.

For more resources for professionals visit the Al-Anon World Service website’s page for professionals.