Do You Really Need a Sponsor in AA? September 4th, 2018 The Recovery Village at Palmer Lake
Blog & News Do You Really Need a Sponsor in AA?

Do You Really Need a Sponsor in AA?

A group of people chatting during an AA meeting.

Working through alcohol addiction is never easy, especially when combating it alone. The hold that alcohol can have on a person is so strong that it is extremely difficult to overcome alcoholism without any outside help. That is exactly why treatment programs and fellowship groups like Alcoholics Anonymous (AA) were formed.

Such groups are designed to help people battling an alcohol addiction by providing them with the support and guidance needed to stay strong in their sobriety. Since 1939, AA has helped millions of people recover from alcohol addiction. Available throughout the country, AA meetings make it comforting for people suffering from alcohol use disorder by surrounding them with peers who are going through the same thing. Whether they are newly sober or have already been on the journey to sobriety for a long time, people dealing with addiction to alcohol can find AA helpful when it comes to staying on a sober path.

One of the integral parts of AA is sponsorship. The idea behind having a sponsor in AA is to help those recovering from alcohol misuse have someone to keep them accountable and to offer support and guidance throughout the journey. While it is certainly possible to stay sober without a sponsor, having one along the way can make the process more successful.

Sponsors are people who have managed to maintain long-term sobriety. They can share their experiences with another individual who is trying to get sober or remain sober after quitting while part of an AA program.

Why Have a Sponsor in AA?

There are plenty of benefits to having an Alcoholics Anonymous sponsor:

  • Shared experiences: Sponsors can share their past experiences with alcohol misuse and help others feel as though they are not alone.
  • Offer hope: Since sponsors are sober and have been for a while, they can help others see that sobriety is possible and beating addiction can be a reality.
  • Offer a shoulder to cry on: Sponsors can simply lend an ear and offer a hand of support, particularly during darker times throughout recovery.
  • Hold others accountable: Since a sponsor regularly checks in with others in AA, there is a sense of accountability involved, which can help keep those suffering from alcohol use disorder stay on the path to sobriety.
  • Provide resources: There are all sorts of Colorado recovery resources that are available to those in addiction recovery, and sponsors can point them out to others in AA.
  • Provide motivation: There will always be valleys that people with alcohol use disorder will endure, and sponsors can help motivate others to continue moving forward.
  • Avoid relapse: Sometimes the cravings for alcohol can be too great, which can lead to a recurrence of alcohol use. Sponsors can help others avoid that by offering suggestions to stick to the sober life.
  • Make a long-term friend: Many sponsors end up becoming close friends with those with whom who they work, which is a priceless gift to get from AA.

Two guys talking

Is a Sponsor Necessary?

While there are certainly many theories as to why an Alcoholics Anonymous sponsor can be of great help, some may wonder if they are really necessary. Although choosing a sponsor is not mandatory, there are studies out there that suggest that sponsors can increase the chances of success in recovery.

Results from several studies conducted over the years continue to show that having a 12-step sponsor is associated with better outcomes than not having one.

The reasons for such findings are associated with the above-mentioned benefits that an AA sponsor can provide to those going through alcohol addiction.

If you are not yet in recovery and are in need of addiction treatment, it is best to start by detoxing safely in a medically supervised setting, followed by entering into a formal addiction treatment program that will provide you with the tools you will need to be successful in achieving and maintaining sobriety, including attendance at AA meetings and possible work with a sponsor.

With personalized therapy, counseling, and enrollment in a 12-step program, you can develop the strengths needed to overcome your addiction. Do not hesitate for one more day!  Contact us to learn more about admissions and treatment options today!

Medical Disclaimer: The Recovery Village aims to improve the quality of life for people struggling with a substance use or mental health disorder with fact-based content about the nature of behavioral health conditions, treatment options and their related outcomes. We publish material that is researched, cited, edited and reviewed by licensed medical professionals. The information we provide is not intended to be a substitute for professional medical advice, diagnosis or treatment. It should not be used in place of the advice of your physician or other qualified healthcare provider.