Alcoholics Anonymous meetings are of two types: open and closed. Both are beneficial to recovering addicts. You can choose any meeting you like. Here is a glimpse of both the meetings. 

Open meetings

Open meetings, as the name suggests, are open to everybody. This means both alcoholics and non-alcoholics can attend the meetings. You can also attend as a general observer, just to see what all happens in a meeting. 

Families and friends of alcoholics can also attend the meetings. People who wish to quit drinking, but don’t yet want to commit, can also attend one of the AA meetings in Florida to get an idea of how meetings happen. 

Open meetings are of two types:

  • Speaker meetings
  • Discussion meetings

Speaker open meetings

As the name suggests, these meetings have speakers. They share their life stories related to alcoholism. They talk of how meetings helped them recover and alter their lifestyle. 

The stories inspire new attendees and those on the path of recovery. They also inspire the non-alcoholics because a lot of life’s lessons are hidden in the stories.  

When you hear other people’s stories, you realize you are not alone in your sobriety journey. They are people like you. 

Discussion open meetings

Discussion AA meetings feature any one member sharing their story. This is followed by a discussion, as other members ask questions, exchange their information, and so on. The common topics discussed are (but are not limited to):

  • How they found a meeting
  • How meetings helped them
  • How AA can help the non-members
  • Tips for long-term sobriety 
  • How to deal with relapses
  • How to cope with alcohol withdrawal symptoms

Closed meetings

Closed meetings are only for members who wish to quit drinking. Nobody else is allowed. 

Closed meetings are of two types:

  • Discussion meetings
  • Step meetings


Discussion closed meetings

These meetings are similar to discussion open meetings. One member leads the meeting and shares his/her experience with alcohol addiction. This follows by a discussion. 

During the discussion, other members, too, share their experiences. People ask each other questions. They get answers, which can, at times, be eye-openers. Discussions help members create a strong support system for each other. You may even make friends in the meetings. These friendships may last long in life. 

The meetings may also discuss the 12 traditions of AA, how the fellowship came into being, and other such related topics. 

Please remember that you discuss only alcoholism-related topics here. You can touch on various aspects of your life that are affected due to alcoholism. Subjects like politics, religion, business, and other sensitive issues are not discussed here. 

Also, it is not mandatory to share your experience. You can attend a meeting only to listen and to observe how things go on here. 

Step closed meetings

Step closed meetings are exclusively for discussing each step of the 12-step program of AA. Members must practice each step thoroughly before they can successfully recover. 

Already on the lookout for local AA meetings near you? You can easily find one online through directories. 

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By Jack

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