In sobriety we build new connections to ourselves, our families, and our communities. In our meetings we embrace all who have “a desire to stop drinking” to our tables. Healthy groups lower barriers to sobriety by creating inclusive spaces and meetings. Healthy groups broaden their understanding of what recovery means for people with different experiences.While it may be tempting to characterize recovery as a universal experience or single journey, our community is proof that we are diverse. Our strength is our diversity and because of who we are, the A.A. community has unique opportunities to learn and grow. Alcoholism is not a not one-size-fits all condition. Nor is the application of the A.A. solution. To meet, greet and defeat the challenges before us we must have culturally competent, multilingual resources that embrace all including historically marginalized community members.
Looking beyond our individual experiences strengthens and supports our recovery. When we connect with the newcomer with open minds and hearts, we learn from them and they from us. Together we build and create life-saving spaces.
Individual recovery is connected to communal recovery and communal recovery begins when we shift the mindset from the “me” to the “we.” The First Step of the 12 Step program reminds us that it is a “we” program. Step One doesn’t say, “I admitted I” it says, “We admitted we.” The shift from “me” to “we” is transformative.
Tradition One echoes this mindset. It reminds us that our common welfare is a priority and that our individual recovery is connected to our unity. Bill W. had this to say on the subject, “For thousands of alcoholics yet to come, AA does have an answer. But there is one condition. We must, at all costs, preserve our essential unity; it must be made unbreakably secure.” (The Language of the Heart)