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Do You Think Having An AA Sponsor Is Absolutely Necessary?

October 14th, 2010 – Posted by James W. West M.D. F.A.C.S. in Living Sober


Question:  I am a newcomer to AA.  I heard about it and I just started going to meetings.  Some in AA tell me I need a sponsor.  Do you think having a sponsor is absolutely necessary?

Answer:  Some have made it through recovery without having a sponsor so I suppose it is not absolutely necessary but it is an absolutely good idea.  This is what AA says about it in its official literature:  “Essentially, the process of sponsorship is this:  an alcoholic who has made some progress in the recovery program shares that experience on a continuous, individual basis with another alcoholic who is attempting to attain or maintain sobriety through AA.”

There are so many benefits of getting a sponsor, not the least of which is always having a person with whom you can share your thoughts and feelings about anything you wish.  Developing the most effective relationship with a sponsor takes some time and not infrequently, a person has to try out a couple of sponsors to find the right person.  Some of the finest friendships have developed from this idea of sponsorship and most alcoholics, who are recovering, find a sponsor an important part of the process.

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  4. Is therapy OK if you’re in AA?
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