The Twelve Steps and Twelve Traditions of Alcoholics Anonymous (AA) have been a great source of help and support for many people worldwide since the organization was established in 1935. The core philosophy of the organization is simple: “Alcoholics Anonymous is a fellowship of men and women who share their experience, strength and hope with one another that they might solve their common problem and help others to recover from alcoholism. The only requirement for membership is a desire to stop drinking.”
Although the AA model works for many people, chemical dependency is not a cookie-cutter illness and the 12-Step approach doesn’t work for everyone. Sometimes even people who make a conscious decision to stop drinking and commit to work the program in good faith don’t succeed.
Alcoholics Anonymous members are not required to adhere to any religion or philosophical belief. However, in spite of its - credible - claims to the contrary, many people believe that AA is indeed a religious organization. Some people hold the extreme opinion that AA is an outdated, cultish organization founded by white Christian men many years ago. Clearly, AA is not a good solution for people who do not wish to acknowledge some kind of a spiritual concept like a "Higher Power".
Other people and more recent science state that the 12 Steps alone don’t work because the program doesn’t address the underlying physical, emotional, social, cultural, gender-related or psychological causes of the addiction.
AA is often the first place people go to seek help for a drinking problem, and the popularity of the program leads many people to think they are doomed if they fail, which is not the case, many seasoned AA members are living proof that there is always hope. Many addictions professionals are concerned that people may give up to early on successful recovery if AA fails to work. Thankfully, Acoholics Anonymous is not the only source of help and hope for people who are addicted to alcohol.
Many treatment centers are predominantly 12-Step based. Failure to adhere to the tenets of AA can lead to a great deal of stress, non-adherence to the program and sometimes results in early discharge from the treatment. We agree that the 12-Step approach has many merits for positive life changes, including increased chance of long-term sobriety and improved self-confidence, increased non-denominational spirituality and supporting, sober networks worldwide. We facilitate the program wholeheartedly when and if it is warranted and wanted. We fully support AA as an integrated part of a treatment program if, again, the clients take to it.
However, we fully understand that many clients, particularly powerful, high profile, high-net worth, celebrity or politically exposed, highly scrutinized individuals, are adamantly opposed to the 12-Step concept and unlikely to change their mind in this regard.
Ultimately, we recognize that alcoholism is a complex illness that affects individuals and their families, friends and professional network on social, spiritual, material, psychological, emotional and even physical levels. At Paracelsus, we believe treatment is an individual decision, and we meet every client where he or she is at. This overarching philosophy allows us to be strictly non-dogmatic in our holistic and comprehensive treatment approach, which has proven beneficial to many of our clients and their families, businesses and even countries.
Treatment at Paracelsus is specifically tailored to the unique needs of each individual. Treatment includes traditional treatment modalities such as chemical dependency counseling, education about the disease, psychotherapy and family therapy along with complementary approaches such as biofeedback, acupuncture, reflexology, personal training, massage, Yoga, etc. Treatment also includes medical assessment and diagnostics, nutritional and lifestyle counseling as well as the thorough biochemical restoration of body and brain.