Find Great AA Meetings in Soledad House

Learn more about the difference great AA meetings can make in alcoholism recovery and how to find one near you.

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Substance dependency and addiction are very harmful, and they negatively affect thousands of people across the United States every day. Many people who suffer from substance use disorders feel like they have to go through this struggle alone. 
Several studies have shown that Alcoholics Anonymous, or AA, can be a great resource for people who are struggling with drug and alcohol addiction. Both the social and therapeutic aspects of AA make it an extremely popular method for getting and staying sober.1

Alcoholics Anonymous at Soledad House

If you or your loved one is interested in attending Alcoholics Anonymous meetings, you have come to the right place. At Soledad House, we offer one of the best Alcoholics Anonymous programs for our residents here in San Diego, California. 

Continue reading to learn more about the benefits of AA meetings in our facility and the positive impact that great AA meetings can have on your recovery and overall well-being.

What is Alcoholics Anonymous?

Alcoholics Anonymous was established in 1935 by Dr. Bob Smith and Bill Wilson in Akron, Ohio. The main purpose is to offer collective support and encourage members to stop abusing alcohol and remain sober.
Alcoholics Anonymous programs are open to anyone regardless of race, age, and background. AA meetings also provide various support methods for members recovering from alcohol addiction. These meetings have also promoted long-term recovery from substance abuse. 

How Does Alcoholics Anonymous (AA) Work?

Alcoholics Anonymous programs involve meetings, sponsors, and 12-Step programs that are geared toward ensuring abstinence and long-term recovery. Members also offer one another support and effective tips to resist the urge to drink. 

AA meetings vary by group, but they typically last an hour or an hour and a half. Most AA groups also have a secretary who runs the meeting, a leader who begins the sharing, and attendees, i.e., the remaining members. Meanwhile, one can attend drug and alcohol anonymous meetings as often as necessary, depending on their needs.

Alcoholic Anonymous Meeting Types

AA meetings are available in different forms to suit specific needs. Some meetings are classified as “open,” which means it’s open to the public, while “closed” meetings are private.

Open Meetings

One of the benefits of great AA meetings is that it makes sobriety less lonely for people struggling with alcohol abuse. Open meetings are public and welcome anyone, including those with or without an alcohol abuse disorder. This means that meetings can include members, their loved ones, employees, and anyone willing to learn about the AA recovery program. 

Open meetings don’t require participation and usually help members understand the purpose of AA meetings. People attending open AA meetings can learn about addiction and find expert recovery tips. Many people have also been actively sober after being put in AA meetings by a third party like a doctor, friend, or any of their loved ones.

Closed Meetings

Closed meetings are only open to people who personally struggle with alcoholism. Many AA for drug addiction and alcohol abuse programs also have closed meetings for their members. 

Members share their stories about why they are attending AA and the impact AA has made on their recovery. Closed meetings also have codes and symbols which help define the theme and topic for every meeting. It also encourages networking and allows people from different backgrounds to find community in sobriety.

Common Alcoholic Anonymous Meeting Formats

Apart from the different types of great AA meetings, you can also consider the meeting format before attending a program. The typical format for most AA programs is detailed below.


During a discussion meeting, an AA member serves as a “chair” or leader and opens a topic for discussion. There may be a different chair at each meeting, and the theme or topic comes from AA literature. It can also involve a reading or recitation where all members can participate in the group discussion..


Speaker meetings give members a platform to discuss their experiences with alcohol use disorder. The chair may also start by sharing their story or choosing a member to speak with during the meeting. This can also open the floor for other members to share their stories.


The leader will introduce the group members for beginner meetings and encourage first-timers to introduce themselves. Though it’s quite similar to the speaker format, the main speaker is the newcomer.

Step, Tradition, or Big Book

Alcoholics Anonymous’s steps and traditions originate from the “Big Book,” the main piece of AA literature. It outlines the relevant traditions and processes for AA meetings to ensure long-term recovery. Many AA meetings involve readings and recitations from the big book, usually led by the chair.

What are the 12 Steps of AA?

Alcoholics Anonymous steps are the general guidelines that helped the AA founders and many participants on their path to recovery. The 12 Steps are found in Chapter 5, “How It Works,” of the Big Book. These are the principles or traditions that members must work through to quit alcohol abuse.

What Happens At 12-Step AA meetings?

During Alcoholics Anonymous 12-Step meetings, participants may partner with a sponsor (another AA member) to work through the steps. AA sponsors can provide additional support throughout the recovery even in the case of a relapse.

What to Expect in an AA Meeting

Generally, great AA meetings vary in terms of format, type, and location. However, the main purpose of all AA meetings is to find support and effective solutions that will promote long-term alcohol recovery.

What Should I Know Before Attending an Alcoholics Anonymous meeting?

When attending AA for drug addiction or alcohol abuse, you can keep an open mind and expect to share your story with people with alcohol use disorder. 

Do You Have to Be Religious to Join Alcoholics Anonymous?

No, you do not have to be religious to attend AA. Although most Alcoholics Anonymous services are faith-based, they are open to anyone, regardless of beliefs.

Rules of Alcoholics Anonymous Programs

Generally, great AA meetings are voluntary and the only rule stated in the preamble of the AA Big Book is the desire to stop drinking.

How Effective are AA Meetings?

The Alcoholics Anonymous statistics from the Big Book boast a 50% success rate, with 25% remaining sober after.2

The American Society of Addiction Medicine (ASAM) has also discovered that about 10% of the participants of the 12-Step program enjoy a successful long-term recovery.

Benefits of AA Meetings

There are numerous benefits to using Alcoholics Anonymous as a tool to achieve long-term sobriety. Some of the benefits of great AA meetings are discussed below.3

Great Structure

AA meetings in a residential treatment program offer structured support and can help to ensure long-term recovery. It also utilizes 12-Step principles and traditions members can work through to reach sobriety.

Alcoholics Easily Get Inspired by their Peers

AA encourages peer support, and members can partner with sponsors who inspire them to abstain from drinking and support them through the challenges of staying sober.

The Chances of Relapse are Reduced

Great AA meetings lower the chance of relapse, and AA support groups help members build a strong social network, making the recovery journey less lonely. Addiction treatment centers also provide psychotherapy to help people work through the emotions that might trigger a relapse. 

It is International

 The program is available worldwide, so you or your loved one can attend AA meetings in your locality or while traveling.

A Simple Approach

The AA 12-Step program is simple, straightforward, and based on real-life experiences, which makes the journey to recovery seem less intimidating.4


 Alcoholics Anonymous is offered to the public at no cost, so you can attend meetings for free. You can also sign up for a cost-effective drug rehab facility to get a more comprehensive treatment program.

Find Great AA Meetings in Soledad House

Soledad House is a serene addiction treatment facility for women who struggle with alcohol use disorder. It is a faith-based program that helps women find support and where they can work through the 12-Step program to achieve sobriety. Our team is here to help our patients achieve sobriety with a program that is tailored to their specific needs.

If you or someone you know is struggling with alcohol addiction,  contact us today to learn more about our programs.