What is AA? AA is an acronym for Alcoholics
Anonymous. Alcoholics Anonymous is an international fellowship of men and women
who have had a drinking problem. It is nonprofessional, self-supporting,
multiracial, apolitical, and available almost everywhere. There are no age or
education requirements. Membership is open to anyone who wants to do something
about his or her drinking problem. (What is A.A? 2018)  The primary purpose of A.A. is to sustain their
sobriety and help other alcoholics to achieve theirs. It is a free of cost membership.
The only requirement for members is to stop drinking. (This is A.A., 2017) Alcoholics
Anonymous is funded through the members contributions. Alcoholics Anonymous began
in 1935 in Akron, Ohio, by two men, Bill Watson and Dr. Bob Smith. They founded
A.A. to help others who suffered from alcoholism and to help and sustain their
own sobriety. In 1939, a group of a sober members wrote and published the book
Alcoholics Anonymous, which they mention to now as the “Big Book.” This Alcoholics
Anonymous book includes a creed which is consists of twelve steps and twelve
traditions that is followed to help reach sobriety. Alcoholics Anonymous has
become the top treatment for people that have the disease of Alcoholism.

On January 10, I attended
an Alcoholics Anonymous meeting for the first time to better

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understand the program and how it functioned.
The meeting was held at 8:30 am in Hayward, CA, at a place called Triangle Fellowship.
I arrived to the meeting 15 minutes early to let one of members know that I was
there for observation and I was a student from Unitek College. As soon as stepped
into the building I was greeted immediately. I was greeted by one members named
Tomas. I asked if I can stay for observation. He gave me the permission to observe.
He offered me donuts and coffee. Later I was greeted by the chairman of the meeting
named Laurie. She was also an alcoholic. She told me I was welcomed to stay for
their meeting and observation. I was greeted by another member named Jim. I told
him that it was my first time being at an A.A. meeting. He gave a brief description
on how the meetings were conducted. He gave me pamphlet showing the different locations
the meetings are held and what days and the times they are held. He also showed
me the Alcoholics Anonymous book that they read and follow during their meetings.
The meeting began with the Serenity Prayer. There was total of 15 people at the
meeting. There were 13 males and 2 females including the chairman. Most them were
in their 30s and 40s. After the Serenity prayer, the Twelve Steps was read aloud
by an A.A. member. After the Twelve Steps was recited, a different member recited
the Twelve Traditions. After the Twelve Traditions was read aloud, each member read
aloud parts of the A.A. book on a chapter that talked about employees and employers.
After a member recited a part of the chapter, they were thanked by the other
members in unison. Each member went around and introduced themselves by their
first name and then stated that they were an alcoholic. After the chapter was finished,
sharing was next that followed. This was the time in the meeting where members can
share their experiences related to the chapter they have read or personal stories
on how this program affected their lives. A member stated that if it wasn’t for
this program they wouldn’t know where they would be today. Another member shared
a story about his anniversary with his wife. They spent their anniversary at a restaurant
and it was their first time going out not having a drink. He stated that not once
did they thought about having a drink and they felt normal. He also he starts his
days off right by going to these meetings and how these meetings changed his life
and help keep him sober. Another member named Ellen shared her story and how this
program saved her life. She stated she has been sober for almost three years. She
stated that going to these meetings and praying to God helps maintain her sobriety
and help others to stay sober. She states that alcoholism is a disease in which
it can play with your mind and how the disease can tell you to have a drink if you
see one. She also shared that if wasn’t for this program, she would still be drinking
and doing drugs. Not every member at the meeting shared their story, but it was
great getting a chance to hear their personal experiences. After hearing these stories,
it changed my whole perception on alcoholism and how much affect it can put on a
person. After everybody got a chance to share what they wanted to share, the chairman
gave announcements. A basket was passed around for contributions. The meeting ended
with everyone came together holding hands in a circle reciting aloud the Our Father’s
Prayer. The meeting was well organized and held in a clean environment. Every member
was nice and respectful. The chairman, along with a few other members, were all
willing to answer any questions that we wanted to ask. Everyone seemed as if
they really wanted to be there and to stay sober. After the meeting the was over,
I thanked the chairman for letting me stay for observation. She told me I am always
welcomed to come to their meeting or refer anyone for treatment of alcoholism. I
told her that before attending the meeting, I had no knowledge about A.A. and after
observing It changed my whole perception on alcoholism.

In conclusion, Alcoholics
Anonymous has proven to be the most effective way of helping

alcoholics stay sober. Anyone can
be helped by Alcoholics Anonymous but they must have the desire to quit
drinking. Alcoholism is an illness which cannot be cured but which can be stopped.
Although it is difficult, more research should be done to determine under what situations
and what types of alcoholics will benefit from Alcoholics Anonymous. Once more
research is done defining the hole of men and women, and young and old alcoholics
will be clearer.