Self Help Support in Grays Harbor

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According to the APA Dictionary of Psychology, potential benefits of self-help groups that professionals may not be able to provide include friendship, emotional support, experiential knowledge, identity, meaningful roles, and a sense of belonging.[2] Self help is the continuous journey of improving yourself by analyzing your actions, reading, studying successful people and taking action every single day.[3]


Narcotics Anonymous

Weekly Meeting Schedule:


7:00 pm - Back to Basics, 915 Anderson Dr., Aberdeen, GH Community Hospital West Campus Ground Floor Conference Room A


3:00 pm - The Last Shot Group, 1st & Park St., Aberdeen, Upstairs in STOP building

7:00 pm - Having Entered Recovery (Women's Meeting), 1st & G St., Aberdeen, St. Andrews Church

7:00 pm - Get A Grip, 823 W Heron St., Aberdeen, Aberdeen Alano Club


Noon - (New Meeting), Westport Court House, Westport

5:00 pm - Turn The Page, (Women's Basic Text Meeting), Division & Young St., Elma, St. Lukes Episcopal Church

7:00 pm - Fresh Start, 505 W Young St., Elma, 1st Methodist Church Annex

7:00 pm - Un Dia La Vez, (Sesiones en espanol), 315 W. Marcy St., Montesano, Healthy Risk Center

7:30 pm - Renewed Hope, 1st & G St., Aberdeen, St. Andrews Church


Noon - Broken Glass, Tokeland Social Services Building, Behind Community Center

7:00 pm - Brothers In Recovery, 1st & G St., Aberdeen, St. Andrews Church

7:00 pm - NA Meeting, 873 Pt. Brown Ave NW #4, Ocean Shores, North Beach Alano Club


5:30 pm - Breaking The Chain, (Youth 30 & Under), 200 Wishkah St., Aberdeen, Gray Harbor Youth Building

7:00 pm - Getting Back, 1st & G St., Aberdeen, St. Andrews Church

7:00 pm - Drop The Rock, 873 Pt. Brown Ave NW #4, Ocean Shores, North Beach Alano Club


Noon - Broken Glass, Tokeland Social Services Building, Behind Community Center

7:00 pm - Fresh Start, 505 W Young St., Elma, 1st Methodist Church Annex

7:00 pm - Top Of The Hill, 1st & G St., Aberdeen, St. Andrews Church


3:00 pm - Breaking The Chain, (Youth 30 & Under), 200 Wishkah St., Aberdeen, Gray Harbor Youth Building

7:30 pm - Renewed Hope, 1st & G St., Aberdeen, St. Andrews Church

10:00 pm - Get A Grip,(Candle Light Meeting), 823 W Heron St., Aberdeen, Aberdeen Alano Club

Information about NA, from NA World Services, Inc.:

Narcotics Anonymous is an international, community-based association of recovering drug addicts with more than 43,900 weekly meetings in over 127 countries worldwide.

The organization developed from the Alcoholics Anonymous Program of the late 1940s. For many years, NA grew very slowly, spreading from Los Angeles to other major North American cities and Australia in the early 1970s. In 1983, Narcotics Anonymous published its self-titled book-the Basic Text-which contributed to its tremendous growth; by year's end, NA had grown to more than a dozen countries and had 2,966 meetings.[1]

Narcotics Anonymous is well established throughout much of the Americas, Western Europe, Australia, the Middle East, New Zealand, and Eastern Europe. Newly formed groups and NA communities can be found scattered throughout the Indian subcontinent, Africa, and East Asia. The organization has more than 50,000 weekly meetings in 130 countries. Narcotics Anonymous books and information pamphlets are currently available in 36 languages, with translations in process for 16 languages.

NA's earliest self-titled pamphlet, known among members as the White Booklet, describes Narcotics Anonymous this way: "NA is a nonprofit fellowship or society of men and women for whom drugs had become a major problem. We ... meet regularly to help each other stay clean. ... We are not interested in what or how much you used ... but only in what you want to do about your problem and how we can help."[2]


Membership is open to all drug addicts, regardless of the particular drug or combination of drugs used. When adapting AA's First Step, the word "addiction" was substituted for "alcohol," thus removing drug-specific language and reflecting the "disease concept" of addiction. One of the keys to NA's success is the therapeutic value of addicts working with other addicts. Members share their successes and challenges in overcoming active addiction and living drug-free, productive lives through the application of principles contained within the Twelve Steps and Twelve Traditions of NA. These principles are the core of the Narcotics Anonymous recovery program.

Membership in Narcotics Anonymous is voluntary; no attendance records are kept either for NA's own purposes or for others.


"The basic premise of anonymity allows addicts to attend meetings without fear of legal or social repercussions. This is an important consideration for an addict thinking about going to a meeting for the first time. Anonymity also supports an atmosphere of equality in meetings. It helps insure that no individual’s personality or circumstance will be considered more important than the message of recovery shared in NA.[3]

Narcotics Anonymous itself is a non-religious program of recovery; each member is encouraged to cultivate an individual understanding-religious or not-of the spiritual principles and apply these principles to everyday life.

There are no social, religious, economic, racial, ethnic, national, gender, or class-status membership restrictions. There are no dues or fees for membership. Narcotics Anonymous is not affiliated with other organizations, including other twelve step programs, treatment centers, or correctional facilities. As an organization, NA does not employ professional counselors or therapists, nor does it provide residential facilities or clinics. Additionally, the fellowship does not provide vocational, legal, financial, psychiatric, or medical services. NA has only one mission: to provide an environment in which addicts can help one another stop using drugs and find a new way to live. [4]

The 2007 membership survey was the first time that members were asked to assess areas of their lives that have improved with NA attendance. The two areas that received overwhelming improvement were family relationships where 90% of our members stated enrichment, and social connectedness was realized by 83% of the respondents. NA literature states that active addiction is marked by increased isolation and destruction of relationships. Recovery in NA has helped surveyed respondents to repair the damage in their lives from drug addiction.

Click this link to see the a pdf of the survey:File:NA membership survey.pdf.[5]

Organizational Philosophy

The NA Symbol:


Narcotics Anonymous has established a tradition of non-endorsement and does not take positions on anything outside its own specific sphere of activity. Narcotics Anonymous does not express opinions-either pro or con-on civil, social, medical, legal, or religious issues. Additionally, it does not take stands on addiction-related issues such as criminality, law enforcement, drug legalization or penalties, prostitution, HIV/HCV infection, or syringe programs. Narcotics Anonymous neither endorses nor opposes any other organization's philosophy or methodology. NA's primary focus is in providing a recovery environment whereby drug addicts can share their recovery experiences with one another. By remaining free from the distraction of controversy, NA is able to focus all of its energy on its particular area of purpose. [6]

Alcoholics Anonymous

Information on AA

Alcoholics Anonymous® is a fellowship of men and women who share their experience, strength and hope with each other that they may solve their common problem and help others to recover from alcoholism. The only requirement for membership is a desire to stop drinking. There are no dues or fees for AA membership; we are self-supporting through our own contributions. AA is not allied with any sect, denomination, politics, organization or institution; does not wish to engage in any controversy, neither endorses nor opposes any causes. Our primary purpose is to stay sober and help other alcoholics to achieve sobriety. [7]

AA is both a program of recovery from alcoholism and a fellowship of recovering alcoholics. The program of AA is outlined in the Twelve Steps, a set of spiritual practices which have their own internal logic and whose purpose is to move the alcoholic from active drinking to the spiritual state of sobriety. In the AA view, alcoholism is an incurable and progressive affliction, and sobriety is not a cure. The goal of the Twelve Steps is therefore not simple abstinence, but a state of being marked by a new orientation to the world and to others in it, including, for many members, God. [1]

Alcoholism damages human memory and human social relations. The doctrine and practices of Alcoholics Anonymous (AA) heal memory damaged by alcoholic drinking. First, meetings and other social interactions with other AA members provide the participant with a therapeutic reminder of his or her affliction. Second, AA's concept of the affliction of alcoholism coupled with its practice of recounting life stories gives members a sense of self-continuity that may have been interrupted by years of heavy drinking. Third, AA's program for recovery provides a confessional practice (the Fourth and Fifth Steps of the program) which allows for life accounting for the member, giving the member's life meaning and coherence. Finally, by placing the member's experiences and self-understandings in a broader framework, the individual's own story is made part of the larger story of the fellowship and a positive part of a tradition of mutual aid.[1]

Historical Data: The Birth of A.A. and its growth in U.S./Canada

A.A. had its beginnings in 1935 at Akron, Ohio, as the outcome of a meeting between Bill W., a New York stockbroker, and Dr. Bob S., an Akron surgeon. Both had been hopeless alcoholics. Prior to that time, Bill and Dr. Bob had each been in contact with the Oxford Group, a mostly nonalcoholic fellowship that emphasized universal spiritual values in daily living. In that period, the Oxford Groups in America were headed by the noted Episcopal clergyman, Dr. Samuel Shoemaker. Under this spiritual influence, and with the help of an old-time friend, Ebby T., Bill had gotten sober and had then maintained his recovery by working with other alcoholics, though none of these had actually recovered. Meanwhile, Dr. Bob’s Oxford Group membership at Akron had not helped him enough to achieve sobriety. When Dr. Bob and Bill finally met, the effect on the doctor was immediate. This time, he found himself face to face with a fellow sufferer who had made good. Bill emphasized that alcoholism was a malady of mind, emotions and body. This all-important fact he had learned from Dr. William D. Silkworth of Towns Hospital in New York, where Bill had often been a patient. Though a physician, Dr. Bob had not known alcoholism to be a disease. Responding to Bill’s convincing ideas, he soon got sober, never to drink again. The founding spark of A.A. had been struck.

Both men immediately set to work with alcoholics at Akron’s City Hospital, where one patient quickly achieved complete sobriety. Though the name Alcoholics Anonymous had not yet been coined, these three men actually made up the nucleus of the first A.A. group. In the fall of 1935, a second group of alcoholics slowly took shape in New York. A third appeared at Cleveland in 1939. It had taken over four years to produce 100 sober alcoholics in the three founding groups.

Early in 1939, the Fellowship published its basic textbook, Alcoholics Anonymous. The text, written by Bill, explained A.A.’s philosophy and methods, the core of which was the now well-known Twelve Steps of recovery.

The book was also reinforced by case histories of some thirty recovered members. From this point, A.A.’s development was rapid.

Also in 1939, the Cleveland Plain Dealer carried a series of articles about A.A., supported by warm editorials. The Cleveland group of only twenty members was deluged by countless pleas for help. Alcoholics sober only a few weeks were set to work on brand-new cases. This was a new departure, and the results were fantastic. A few months later, Cleveland’s membership had expanded to 500. For the first time, it was shown that sobriety could be mass-produced.

Meanwhile, in New York, Dr. Bob and Bill had in 1938 organized an over-all trusteeship for the budding Fellowship. Friends of John D. Rockefeller Jr. became board members alongside a contingent of A.A.s. This board was named The Alcoholic Foundation. However, all efforts to raise large amounts of money failed, because Mr. Rockefeller had wisely concluded that great sums might spoil the infant society. Nevertheless, the foundation managed to open a tiny office in New York to handle inquiries and to distribute the A.A. book — an enterprise which, by the way, had been mostly financed by the A.A. members themselves.

The book and the new office were quickly put to use. An article about A.A. was carried by Liberty magazine in the fall of 1939, resulting in some 800 urgent calls for help. In 1940, Mr. Rockefeller gave a dinner for many of his prominent New York friends to publicize A.A. This brought yet another flood of pleas. Each inquiry received a personal letter and a small pamphlet. Attention was also drawn to the book Alcoholics Anonymous, which soon moved into brisk circulation. Aided by mail from New York, and by A.A. travelers from already-established centers, many new groups came alive. At the year’s end, the membership stood at 2,000.

Then, in March 1941, the Saturday Evening Post featured an excellent article about A.A., and the response was enormous. By the close of that year, the membership had jumped to 6,000, and the number of groups multiplied in proportion. Spreading across the U.S. and Canada, the Fellowship mushroomed.

By 1950, 100,000 recovered alcoholics could be found worldwide. Spectacular though this was, the period 1940-1950 was nonetheless one of great uncertainty. The crucial question was whether all those mercurial alcoholics could live and work together in groups. Could they hold together and function effectively? This was the unsolved problem. Corresponding with thousands of groups about their problems became a chief occupation of the New York headquarters.

By 1946, however, it had already become possible to draw sound conclusions about the kinds of attitude, practice and function that would best suit A.A.’s purpose. Those principles, which had emerged from strenuous group experience, were codified by Bill in what are today the Twelve Traditions of Alcoholics Anonymous. By 1950, the earlier chaos had largely disappeared. A successful formula for A.A. unity and functioning had been achieved and put into practice. (See Page 9.)

During this hectic ten-year period, Dr. Bob devoted himself to the question of hospital care for alcoholics, and to their indoctrination with A.A. principles. Large numbers of alcoholics flocked to Akron to receive hospital care at St. Thomas, a Catholic hospital. Dr. Bob became a member of its staff. Subsequently, he and the remarkable Sister M. Ignatia, also of the staff, cared for and brought A.A. to some 5,000 sufferers. After Dr. Bob’s death in 1950, Sister Ignatia continued to work at Cleveland’s Charity Hospital, where she was assisted by the local groups and where 10,000 more sufferers first found A.A. This set a fine example of hospitalization wherein A.A. could cooperate with both medicine and religion.

In this same year of 1950, A.A. held its first International Convention at Cleveland. There, Dr. Bob made his last appearance and keyed his final talk to the need of keeping A.A. simple. Together with all present, he saw the Twelve Traditions of Alcoholics Anonymous enthusiastically adopted for the permanent use of the A.A. Fellowship throughout the world. (He died on November 16, 1950.)

The following year witnessed still another significant event. The New York office had greatly expanded its activities, and these now consisted of public relations, advice to new groups, services to hospitals, prisons, Loners, and Internationalists, and cooperation with other agencies in the alcoholism field. The headquarters was also publishing "standard" A.A. books and pamphlets, and it supervised their translation into other tongues. Our international magazine, the A.A. Grapevine, had achieved a large circulation. These and many other activities had become indispensable for A.A. as a whole.

Nevertheless, these vital services were still in the hands of an isolated board of trustees, whose only link to the Fellowship had been Bill and Dr. Bob. As the co-founders had foreseen years earlier, it became absolutely necessary to link A.A.’s world trusteeship (now the General Service Board of Alcoholics Anonymous) with the Fellowship that it served. Delegates from all states and provinces of the U.S. and Canada were forthwith called in. Thus composed, this body for world service first met in 1951. Despite earlier misgivings, the gathering was a great success. For the first time, the remote trusteeship became directly accountable to A.A. as a whole. The A.A. General Service Conference had been created, and A.A.’s over-all functioning was thereby assured for the future.

A second International Convention was held in St. Louis in 1955 to celebrate the Fellowship’s 20th anniversary. The General Service Conference had by then completely proved its worth. Here, on behalf of A.A.’s old-timers, Bill turned the future care and custody of A.A. over to the Conference and its trustees. At this moment, the Fellowship went on its own; A.A. had come of age.

Had it not been for A.A.’s early friends, Alcoholics Anonymous might never have come into being. And without its host of well-wishers who have since given of their time and effort — particularly those friends of medicine, religion, and world communications — A.A. could never have grown and prospered. The Fellowship here records its constant gratitude.

It was on January 24, 1971, that Bill, a victim of pneumonia, died in Miami Beach, Florida, where — seven months earlier — he had delivered at the 35th Anniversary International Convention what proved to be his last words to fellow A.A.s: "God bless you and Alcoholics Anonymous forever."

Since then, A.A. has become truly global, and this has revealed that A.A.’s way of life can today transcend most barriers of race, creed and language. A World Service Meeting, started in 1969, has been held biennially since 1972. Its locations alternate between New York and overseas. It has met in London, England; Helsinki, Finland; San Juan del Rio, Mexico; Guatemala City, Guatemala; Munich, Germany; Cartagena, Colombia; Auckland, New Zealand; and Oviedo, Spain.[8]

District 21 (Grays Harbor/Pacific Counties) AA Meetings

Welcome to Western Washington's 21st District of Alcoholics Anonymous. District 21 is comprised of meetings in and around the Grays Harbor and Pacific County coastal region. We are glad you're here. Our primary purpose is to make sure you can find your way to a meeting within our district, or guide you to the helping hand of AA close to you. To find a meeting near you please contact us at [9]


Weekly Meeting Schedule:


7:00 pm - Get A Life Al-Anon, Gray's Harbor Comm. Hosp. East Campus, 1006 North H St., Aberdeen


7:00 pm - Get A Life Al-Anon, Gray's Harbor Comm. Hosp. East Campus, 1006 North H St., Aberdeen


7:00 pm - New Elma Al-Anon, Faith Lutheran Church, 1296 Monte Elma Road, Elma

Alateen Questionaire

Alateen is a fellowship of young Al-Anon Family Group members, usually teenagers, whose lives have been affected by someone else's drinking. Has your Life Been Affected By Someone Else's Drinking? Alateen Is for You! Alateen is for young people whose lives have been affected by someone else's drinking. Sometimes, the active drinking has stopped, or the active drinker may not live with us anymore. Even though the alcohol may be gone, and the alcoholic gone or recovering in AA, we are still affected. Many of us have received help from Alateen or Al-Anon. The following twenty questions are to help you decide whether or not Alateen is for you. Click here[10]

Welcome to Al-Anon/Alateen

For over 55 years, Al-Anon (which includes Alateen for younger members) has been offering strength and hope for friends and families of problem drinkers. It is estimated that each alcoholic affects the lives of at least four other people... alcoholism is truly a family disease. No matter what relationship you have with an alcoholic, whether they are still drinking or not, all who have been affected by someone else’s drinking can find solutions that lead to serenity in the Al-Anon/Alateen fellowship.[11]

Washington Area Al-Anon/Alateen[12]


1) Gabrielle –Swora, Maria. Commemoration and the Healing of Memories in Alcoholics Anonymous. Blackwell Publishing on behalf of the American Anthropological Association. Ethos, Vol. 29, No. 1 (Mar., 2001), pp. 58-77

2) APA Dictionary of Psychology, 1st ed., Gary R. VandenBos, ed., Washington: American Psychological Association, 2007.