There are many Alateen meetings being held in the Aberdeen area every week.
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What is Alateen?
Alateen is a division of Al-Anon. It is a support group specifically for teenages who are affected by someone else’s alcohol problem. This group meets in the same building as the Al-Anon group but in a separate room.
Alateen is not for teenagers who have an alcohol problem themselves.
This is a non-professional support group. There is not a licensed therapist or medical professional running the group. There is an adult group sponsor for each Alateen group.
The group sponsor is the only adult allowed to attend the teen meetings. To be a group sponsor the adult must be an active member of Al-Anon and have a background check. They are also required to go through a training process from Al-Anon.
The group sponsor is not taking on the role of teacher or parent. They are there for safety and to keep the discussion on track. If a group sponsor is not available the teenagers are welcome to join the Al-Anon meeting.
What to Expect at an Alateen Meeting
Meetings are at a specific time set up by each local group, they usually last around an hour. During an Alateen meeting, members share their experiences with each other. Individuals are not required to share but it is encouraged.
The purpose of Alateen is to help other teenagers who are affected by someone else’s drinking problem. Members are encouraged to read Al-Anon and Alateen-approved literature. Alateen Talk is a newsletter specifically for this group.
Alateen members learn the following:
- Alcoholism is a disease.
- They are not the cause of someone else’s drinking or behavior.
- They cannot change or control anyone but themselves.
- They can build a satisfying and rewarding life for themselves.
- They can detach themselves emotionally from the drinker’s problems while still continuing to love that person.
During meetings, the Twelve Traditions of Alateen and the 12 step process will also be discussed. Following the 12 steps themselves allows teens to encourage other teens, friends and family.
Some other things that could be discussed at Alateen meetings are common questions that some teens might have:
- Who are alcoholics?
- Is there a cure for this illness?
- What if the alcoholic does not stop drinking?
- What to say to friends if they see a family member drunk?
- What if my friends do not want to come to my house?
- Does it matter if I get help when the alcoholic will not get help?
- What should I do if a situation becomes unsafe or violent?
There are some things that must be recognized about Alateen meetings. This is not the place to complain about parents or other people. It is also not a social hangout, there is a purpose for the meetings.
The Need for Alateen Meetings
Alateen meetings are needed in Aberdeen, SD. Alcohol abuse is still very common across the nation. A SAMHSA report says that 1 in 10 children lived in a household with at least one parent who had a drinking problem.
In Aberdeen, the Sanford Health Community Health Needs Assessment reported that 40% of the people surveyed participate in binge drinking at least one time per month. More seriously, 4% of the people surveyed binge drink 2-3 times per week.
The survey also reported that 18% of the driving deaths are alcohol-related.
In April 2020, Dakota News Now reported a man was arrested after a police chase. The man was speeding when an officer attempted to pull him over. He sped away and eventually crashed into a tree. The officer pulled him out of the vehicle as the engine was on fire. It was the man’s fourth DUI offense.
There were a total of 45 alcohol-impaired driving fatalities in South Dakota during 2018. The same year there were 5,891 DUI arrests in the state.
Traveling to Arizona for Drug and Alcohol Rehab
Traveling to another state for drug and alcohol rehab is becoming more common. For many people leaving the state for rehab can make a big difference in their recovery efforts.
People have different reasons to seek treatment options outside of their hometown.
If someone lives in a smaller town there may not be very many drug and alcohol rehab options. Going out of state can open up treatment options.
A new environment can help create a more positive mindset. Going someplace where the weather is nice can help create a peaceful atmosphere. It also helps people avoid places where they used to hang out and use drugs or drink a lot. For some people being in those places can trigger a relapse.
There are times when going out of state can be a less expensive option than staying local. All drug and alcohol rehab programs do not take every kind of insurance. When a program is not an in-network provider the cost can be high.
People with high profile jobs like police officers, lawyers, and even doctors might find themselves with an alcohol problem. They may feel the need for a higher level of privacy during their recovery efforts. Leaving the state for rehab would be a good way to keep their recovery less stressful and private.
At SpringBoard Recovery, our goal is to create a personalized recovery plan for each individual. We treat each person with respect and dignity, like a family member.
We provide a wide range of therapy options and have recovery housing options as well.