Gender Oppression in 12-Step Literature

How you choose to describe an illness does not immediately equal mental illness stigma

Resistance to altering the gendered textual content of AA literature locations an unfair burden on the many individuals who need to get sober however really feel ostracized by the oppressive language.

Alcoholic Nameless has a language drawback.

People are difficult, and 12-step applications don’t work for everybody. Substance use problems don’t have a single identifiable trigger and there may be not a one-size-fits-all remedy. Like most issues, remedy choices are restricted for people who find themselves already marginalized. Individuals of coloration, particularly ladies and non-cis people, are at a specific drawback when attempting to entry companies. Regardless of opinions on the usefulness of this system, Alcoholics Nameless (AA) and different 12-step applications are often the one choices for somebody who wants assist to cease abusing their substance of alternative. They’re free and exist everywhere in the world.

AA is the unique 12-step program; all others have been primarily based on its literature. Different applications reminiscent of Narcotics Nameless, Overeaters Nameless, and Anorexics and Bulimics Nameless all use the identical script with the time period “alcoholic” changed with the related description. These different 12-step applications are inclined to make the most of AA’s 12 traditions, a set of advised pointers to assist teams set up themselves. The traditions state that there’s one major goal for every group and that’s “to hold its message to the alcoholic who nonetheless suffers.”

There are some who imagine if AA doesn’t work it’s as a result of the particular person isn’t doing the required work and that objections to old school language and sexist stereotypes are one thing folks should recover from. AA members typically say, “The language is archaic, but it surely works as is. If it ain’t broke, don’t repair it.”

Simply because one thing doesn’t hurt you, it doesn’t imply it doesn’t hurt others…

Discover out extra in regards to the present exclusionary language in all-inclusive restoration applications within the unique article Gendered Language in 12 Step Packages at The Repair.

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