Here’s a scene from The Wire, starring Steve Earle. If you’ve ever wondered what a Narcotics Anonymous or Alcoholics looks like, here you go. This isn’t the typical structure of a meeting – generally, the chairs in the room are arranged in a circle, or around a table, and people share what’s going on with them. There’s usually a general theme to the meeting, based on one of the books associated with whatever fellowship the meeting is.
Breakdown of what’s happening:
The sheet that needs to be signed in the beginning is a slip given to people court ordered to attend meetings. So, if someone gets caught driving under the influence, the judge will generally order them to attend so many meetings a week. In order to prove that the person has attended the meetings, a person who’s there is supposed to sign it.
The talking you hear in the background, in the beginning, is text from the White Book. The White Book is actually a pamphlet, and copies of it are left around the room and people read selections from it, including the twelve steps and twelve traditions.
This is how a speaker meeting is set up. The readings, in the beginning, are done as normal, but someone who’s been around for a while tells their story, and sometimes there’s a question and answer period at the end.
Also, you generally can’t smoke in these meetings anymore, and I don’t see a single pot of coffee in this video, and it’s screwing up the realism for me.
Partially related segue: I have wandered away from the program since my leg broke unexpectedly in Nov. I had to leave the Oxford House (a recovery house) because the bedrooms were on the second floor. Weirdly enough, I felt like getting kicked out would lead to a relapse, but it took way longer and was less severe than what I thought would happen.
It’s been far too long since I’ve been to a meeting, and I’m getting to the point where I’m questioning if I even NEED the program…I know enough to know that it’s a giant red flag. Tomorrow, I’ll check out an online meeting despite the fact I really, really, don’t want to.
I need to reconnect with more sober women…