Outside Help

- August 15, 2022

Some of us may need to see a mental health professional.  Our brains have been trained to think in all sorts of negative ways.  We may feel a tug of war going on in our minds.  This can prove to be a formidable battle and we may need additional help outside the AA venue.  Some people see stigma attached to seeing a clinician or psychiatrist.  True, some of the population view mental health treatment with skepticism.   This is usually due to them having jaded old ideas regarding mental health treatment.  There is nothing we can do about this.

If we decide to seek mental health treatment, they’re quite a lot of professionals who specialize in 12 step treatment.  Some of them may also be recovering alcoholics like myself.  This person may help you go deeper into the program of recovery.  Your understanding of certain passages in the Big Book may be clarified by talking to this individual.  At times group therapy facilitated by the mental health professional may also prove to be quite helpful.  It is up to the professional to decide what type of treatment may serve you best.

The therapist may send you to a psychiatrist if they suspect that you may need to take psychotropic medication.  The psychiatrist will then meet with you to discuss your needs if any.  This type of medication is effective for mood and personality disorders.  Don’t let anyone in AA tell you that you’re not sober if you take medication.  If prescribed by a physician and taken as directed, you are certainly still sober.  Some people in the fellowship out of ignorance may have this viewpoint.  It’s best to not share your information with others.  Some people think they have a medical doctor’s degree after they have been sober for a while.  It’s best to avoid these people as they can be very toxic in other AA areas as a whole.


Short term care may be prescribed to you by the therapist, 8-10 sessions.  In some cases, care is needed for a longer period of time.  It’s best to follow the therapist’s and psychiatrist directions as to how your treatment will be structured.  We may meet with the therapist once per week and the psychiatrist as needed for medication evaluations.  This is ultimately for you to decide if you could benefit from this type of intervention.  

Written by Phillip