Transition from Al-Anon to IDAA Family Recovery

At the 2023 business meeting of the IDAA Al-Anon program In Tucson AZ, it was decided that the IDAA Al-Anon program would be renamed the IDAA Family Recovery program. There were several reasons that this decision was made:

1. IDAA members use various 12-step groups for their personal recovery, not just Al- Anon. Al- Anon is specifically for families and friends of alcoholics. While Al-Anon is the oldest of the 12-step family fellowships, there are many others. IDAA has been unifying these recovery programs in IDAA for medical families for a long time; this decision simply acknowledges that IDAA Family Recovery includes more than Al-Anon members. Among the other 12-step recovery support groups that we explicitly welcome are:

    • Nar-Anon & Narateen - narcotics
    • CoDA - codependence
    •  Mar-Anon - Marijuana
    • COSA - compulsive sexual behaviors
    • Families Anonymous - all compulsive disorders
    • S-Anon - compulsive sexual behaviors
    • Adult Children of Alcoholics/Dysfunctional Families (ACA)
    • Gam-Anon & Gam-A-Teen - gambling
    • Co-Anon - cocaine

2. The use of the Al-Anon name is not appropriate since our meetings do not meet the qualifications of an Al-anon meeting. Tradition 3 states:

The relatives of alcoholics, when gathered together for mutual aid, may call themselves an Al-Anon Family Group, provided that, as a group, they have no other affiliation. The only requirement for membership is that there be a problem of alcoholism in a relative or friend.

Since our IDAA meetings are specifically identified as belonging to IDAA, we clearly do not meet this requirement. Further, our meetings clearly do not meet, and do not want to meet, the membership requirement of Al-Anon. We want our meetings to be safe places only for medical families that have been affected by the compulsive behaviors of our loved ones; therefore, our membership is restricted and not available to the general public.

3. Al-Anon’s World Service Office actively protects its name from being used by organizations that do not meet the standards defined in Tradition 3.

The actual structure of our program is not changing. We continue to use the steps, traditions, principles and literature of Al-Anon. We also welcome ideas and literature from other 12-step programs and spiritual philosophies.

Growing our experience and recovery base ensures the availability of help for all medical families affected by these devastating diseases. In IDAA unity, we can reach out to break the isolation of living in these diseases – a feeling of isolation only increased by belonging to a medical family. This has been, and remains, our primary purpose.