Cocaine Anonymous (CA) is one of the most popular group supports for people who are currently struggling with, or who are recovering from an addiction to cocaine.
Group therapy programs like Cocaine Anonymous are one of the most effective ways for recovering addicts to reintegrate themselves into society. If you or one of your loved ones are working towards recovering from a cocaine addiction, you might be interested in learning about what CA can provide you.
This article seeks to answer some of the most common questions about the program, and should provide you with enough information to decide whether or not this group therapy is for you.
Why is group therapy helpful?
Group therapy is one of the most common and well researched therapeutic methods for helping people with substance abuse problems overcome their addictions. This is because group therapy takes away some of the stress that comes along with having to battle an addiction on your own.
Many people find it extremely difficult to overcome their addiction because they are unable to speak about it openly with friends and family. It is not uncommon for people who do not have drug addictions to look down on those who do, though this is not always a conscious decision.
With the current politcal views on drugs being such a huge contributor to global scandal, drug addiction has developed a serious negative stigma. The average member of society wants nothing to do with drug addiction and people who use drugs, which makes it very difficult for somebody struggling with addiction to open up.
Groups like Cocaine Anonymous allow people the comfort of speaking openly with others who have experienced similar problems. Being able to share their experiences, and being able to hear the experiences of others and gain insight and advice from people who have overcome problems that you are currently struggling with, can be immensely beneficial for helping you along with your recovery.
How does Cocaine Anonymous work?
It’s important to know that not all CA groups are run by members of the same organization. There are local chapters, most often with their own websites, but they do not report to a specific administrtaion.
Despite this, most CA meetings are actually quite similar. That's because they follow a very simple formula.
CA Group Meeting Outline
Most CA meetings have some sort of group leader that orchestrates the group for the session. This group leader may not be the same person for every session in the week. Some groups may not even have a leader, and are instead self-sufficient groups run by recovering addicts themselves.
Regardless, the group typically sits in a circle, so everyone can face each other. The routine begins the same way that an Alcoholics Anonymous routine begins. Members introduce themselves, followed by an admission of their addiction to cocaine. After the circle has introduced themselves, people are able to share stories, worries, and anxieties with other people in the group.
Everyone in a Cocaine Anonymous group is there to support each other and support themselves. This makes it much easier for people to open up about things that they may not have been able to share with anyone before due to the stigma of drugs, personal worries, or any other reason.
The purpose of helping people express themselves in this way is to help them better explore their situation, their addiction, and their recovery. If you can develop a much better understanding of your addiction, it will make it much easier for you to continue your abstinence.
Having a support group also helps keep you active in your recovery. Many recovering addicts start to think, after a few months or years of being sober, that they are just “sober” - not that they are a “recovering addict.” This distinction is important, because if someone forgets that they are an addict in recovery, they are liable to relapse and start the whole cycle again.
Do I need Cocaine Anonymous?
Not everybody who struggles with a cocaine addiction is going to need to attend a group therapy session. If you are debating whether or not it's necessary for you to attend Cocaine Anonymous, consider the following.
Cocaine Anonymous is often cited as being one of the most effective methods for recovering cocaine addicts to prevent relapsing. Many members of this program or other group therapies have revealed that they struggled with relapsing repeatedly, and had almost given up hope before they finally tried a group therapy session.
Being able to open up in front of other recovering addicts, and being able to share the feelings that come along with addiction, makes the problems seem much less personal. This makes it easier to overcome.
Another thing that often leads people to relapse is boredom. After somebody stops using drugs, it can be very difficult for them to find purpose in life. There is often a long period of time during which activities that they used to find pleasurable are no longer enjoyable. This is one of the leading causes of relapse.
Having a weekly schedule with group meetings can give somebody a sense of purpose again. Knowing that you are going to have people to talk about your addiction with can make it seem much less daunting to have to avoid using drugs for weeks or months on end.
In addition, you develop a sense of pride and duty. These people are all nice, strong individuals who have struggled with similar problems as you. They have your best interests at heart, just as you will have theirs.
Being a part of a group like this makes your relapse seem less personal. And you will not only want to avoid relapsing for your sake, but for the sake of not disappointing your group therapy friends