Although NA was formed to combat narcotic abuse and addiction, it today embraces anybody who is attempting to overcome any sort of drug or alcohol dependence. NA originated as a branch of Alcoholics Anonymous (AA). The 12-step NA recovery program was established to be a recovery road with all members following a set of principles and supporting each other’s attempts to stay clean, similar to the one developed by AA.

NA’s mission is to help individuals battling addiction and spread the message that recovery is achievable.

What to Expect from an NA Meeting?

Since all Narcotics Anonymous organizations operate independently, the types of people who attend meetings may differ from one another. Some meetings are closed and only accept recovering addicts. Other sessions may be available or inviting to non-addicts who want to help a loved one or gain information and understanding.

If you are solely looking for help with alcohol addiction, NA meetings with many recovering alcoholics may be more understanding. Alternatively, Alcoholics Anonymous is also accessible to you and may offer more specific help for your requirements.

It’s natural to feel apprehensive before attending a meeting, but keep in mind that everyone has been where you are. In reality, members of Narcotics Anonymous are all recovered addicts who wish to assist others to recover. You may be confident that the group will provide a safe, friendly, and non-judgmental atmosphere.

“Closed” vs. “Open” Meetings

Narcotics Anonymous meetings, like Alcoholics Anonymous meetings, can be “open” or “closed.” Anyone is welcome to attend open meetings, including people who are interested in the group and how it operates or who wish to go to support a loved one. Closed meetings are just for addicts in recovery.

It is up to you to select whatever sort of group you want to join and what you are comfortable with. It is also a good idea to check out a few various groups and meetings until you discover one that matches your requirements, schedule, and personality the best.

General NA Meeting Guidelines

  • Everyone in attendance should be treated with dignity.
  • Personal sharing is entirely optional.
  • Some sessions may have speakers who can offer their perspectives.
  • Only first names are used within the meeting, and attendance is kept confidential.
  • Meetings are free to attend; only optional donations are accepted.
  • The meeting site does not always signify affiliation; meetings might take place in public places or religious institutions.

The Spirituality of Narcotics Anonymous

NA meetings are not religious in nature but rather spiritual in essence. This alludes to greater power without specifying what that is, as it varies from person to person. Parts of the NA meeting frequently contain references to “God” and a prayer at the end. Some people, however, substitute “God” with “higher power” or “good orderly direction.” The higher power element is intended to be a set of guiding morals and strength that is not rooted in religion.

The 12 Steps of NA

Narcotics Anonymous’ treatment is based on the 12 stages established by AA. The main difference is that NA terminology substitutes references to “alcohol” with simply “addiction,” as NA does not differentiate between addictions.

  1. We admitted that we were powerless over our addiction; that our lives had become unmanageable.
  2. We came to believe that a Power greater than ourselves could restore us to sanity.
  3. We made a decision to turn our will and our lives over to the care of God as we understood Him.
  4. We made a searching and fearless moral inventory of ourselves.
  5. We admitted to God, to ourselves, and to another human being the exact nature of our wrongs.
  6. We were entirely ready to have God remove all these defects of character.
  7. We humbly asked Him to remove our shortcomings.
  8. We made a list of all persons we had harmed, and became willing to make amends to them all.
  9. We made direct amends to such people wherever possible, except when to do so would injure them or others.
  10. We continued to take personal inventory and when we were wrong promptly admitted it.
  11. We sought through prayer and meditation to improve our conscious contact with God as we understood Him, praying only for knowledge of His will for us and the power to carry that out.
  12. Having had a spiritual awakening as the result of these steps, we tried to carry this message to addicts, and to practice these principles in all our affairs.

Find a Recovery Program

The 12 steps of NA have had a good influence on individuals worldwide by globally adopting the same ideas and practices. If you or a loved one is ready to begin the road to recovery, use the NA Meeting search page to locate a Narcotics Anonymous meeting or organization in your region. Meeting schedules are subject to change, so it’s advisable to double-check the information via the local chapter’s website or hotline.


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