Topic 2. Alcoholism, the Disease
Alcoholics usually have to face the medical facts of the disease, as well as the present unmanageability of their own lives, before they can accept help. This seems to be true even for newcomers who are forced by pressure from others to come to A.A. for the first time.
The medical viewpoint on alcoholism that helped to bring about the birth of A.A. is outlined in the chapter 'The Doctor's Opinion in Alcoholics Anonymous. It is explained in further detail in the first three chapters of the Big Book and in the A.A. pamphlets: Three Talks to Medical Societies by Bill W. and AA as a Resource for the Health Care Professional.
Many good descriptions of the disease are used by A.A. Members, such as: threefold illness, progressive disease, compulsion plus obsession, etc. (See the pamphlet 44 Questions.)
Many newcomers have also been helped by discussion of various definitions of alcoholism, of the symptoms of the disease, of the uselessness of misdirected willpower in combating alcoholism, the futility in insisting on an intellectual understanding of the condition before becoming willing to practice the A.A. program.
Key points to consider:
. Medical facts of the disease
. Present unmanageability of their own lives
. Medical viewpoint in the Doctors Opinion
. 1st three chapters in the Big Book
. Pamphlet Three Talks to Medical Societies
. Pamphlet AA as a Resource for the Health Care Professional
. threefold illness
. progressive disease
. compulsion plus obsession
. Pamphlet 44 Questions now called Frequently Asked Questions
. Various definitions of alcoholism
. Symptoms of the disease
. The uselessness of misdirected willpower in combating alcoholism
. The futility in insisting on an intellectual understanding of the condition