The term dry drunk is used a lot in AA and in recovery generally. Some people find it helpful, other people find it a bit judgmental.
Whatever it may mean to people, its real value lies in its ability to generate a sense of the need to change, and what that change actually means.
One of the benefits of going to meetings while getting sober is that people hear stories that help them understand their own alcoholism, even if they don’t fully understand it at the time.
One of the most helpful times in people’s stories is the moment when they start talking about how alcohol stopped working for them.
There is much talk in Alcoholics Anonymous about spirituality and religion, and the mix between the two. There is a fairly simple reason for this.
Many people who look to get sober have had bad if not traumatic experiences with religious organisations, normally as children, but often as adults as well.
Emotional sobriety is a phrase that was used by Bill Wilson in a Grapevine article, entitled The Next Frontier: Emotional Sobriety, published in 1958, some 20-plus years after he got sober.
Originally a letter to a friend, he charts his journey in recovery in a very specific way.
Al-Anon is perhaps the 12 step fellowship most closely associated with Alcoholics Anonymous.
In the early days of AA virtually all members were men, and their wives would go with them to meetings and normally sit in the kitchen and chat to each other.