Alcoholics Anonymous, or AA, and Narcotics Anonymous, or NA, have offered support, strategies, and hope to people struggling with substance abuse and dependency for decades. Often AA or NA meetings are part of a long-term strategy for people who are currently in sobriety, as well as those attempting to reach it. Having the support of people who have been in the same places and suffered the same problems makes those problems easier to manage. Peers can show you how they handled those challenges and turned them into opportunity.
Many people attend their first AA or NA meeting as part of a substance abuse treatment program in Cocoa, but there are also several standalone meetings that you can attend in Cocoa and surrounding areas.
Since they are so central to recovery for many people, it is important to know just how each type of meeting works, what the expectations are, and what you can expect when you attend. Here is a brief overview of both AA and NA, how they function, and how to find the right meeting for you.
AA Meetings in Cocoa, Florida
Alcoholics Anonymous is a fellowship and a non-profit organization that was built during the Depression to address the rising problem of alcoholism in communities where Prohibition had failed to stop it and where the Great Depression had forced many into a particular form of hopelessness. As a result, it was designed to be open to all; there is no age requirement, no educational requirement, no expectation of social class, no religious requirements and no fee to attend. AA meetings span the range of human experience.
There are expectations at an AA meeting, however. You will be expected to be open-minded, to respect other members of the group and listen to their problems and concerns, to keep what you hear in meetings strictly private, and to practice self-awareness as you reach for self-improvement. Much of AA is built around the twelve steps, a form of spiritual practice which is largely about working alcoholics through the process of recovery and rebuilding what they have damaged, where they can.
That said, the expectations and steps are simply a framework upon which group leaders and members can build. This is by design so that the program can be adapted to the needs of as many communities as possible. Meetings can be led by an experienced and trained member, a professional counselor, or any number of other authority figures with the proper training, and meetings are held in any number of facilities.
Finding AA Meeting Near Me
Thanks to the many different AA meetings, finding a meeting that best suits your needs is a matter of self-awareness and “auditioning” meetings. First, you should write down what you need from the meeting both in a practical sense, such as it being close enough for you to attend regularly, and in a personal sense. For example, some AA meetings may involve the discussion of sexual trauma, and as a result, they are kept single gender. Others are open not just to alcoholics, but their families, as well as spouses and children of alcoholics who do not attend that specific meeting. Each meeting will clearly list its approach and requirements in its literature and will include contact information so you can reach out to leadership and discuss it.
This is a common practice and is encouraged as part of self-awareness, so do not be concerned that you are “annoying” a group leader. Knowing what you need is a step toward getting the most out of a meeting. Similarly, the group leaders will respect your privacy as you search for a meeting.
You can find meetings in your area easily by using the Alcoholics Anonymous website locator tool. Here are a few locations to get you started:
- Eleventh Step Group
- 629 Brevard Ave.
- Cocoa, FL 39222
- 311 Group
- St. Mark’s Episcopal Church
- 4 Church St.
- Cocoa, FL 32922
NA Meetings in Cocoa, Florida
When AA was founded, substance abuse was largely either lumped into the same category, considered a medical matter as many narcotics were still prescription medicine, or simply considered to not exist. Even from AA’s beginnings, however, it was clear that narcotics required separate leadership and meetings, and so NA was founded in 1953 as an “offshoot” of AA, quickly becoming a separate entity.
NA is similar to AA in some respects. It draws on the twelve-step method, and is a fellowship like AA, meaning the same lack of restrictions and the same expectations apply. One key difference is that NA may focus on a specific substance in some groups, and if you are working on sobriety from a particular drug, that may be helpful.
Finding NA Meetings Near Me
Also similar to AA, NA meetings have a wide number of approaches that depend heavily on the membership and the leadership of a given group. Some groups will have an additional focus beyond just substance abuse and dependency, such as a focus on legal issues which can surround substance abuse. It is important that before you look for an NA meeting, you understand both what you need from the meeting in a practical sense and in an emotional sense. Just like AA, literature will explain the functioning of the group and will provide contact information for leadership.
You can use the Narcotics Anonymous website to find meetings in the Cocoa area. Here are a few to get you started:
- New Way to Live
- 1139 S. Lake Dr.
- Cocoa, FL 32922
- Mainstream Recovery
- Community Baptist Church
- 12534 Roseland Rd.
- Sebastian, FL 32958
Peer support is often a cornerstone of reaching and maintaining sobriety. Searching for the right meeting is a key step in the right direction and will help you set substance abuse aside. Reach out to The Recovery Village today to explore 12-step programs in your area.