The coronavirus crisis has hit everyone hard, but for those struggling with alcoholism, this pandemic has brought on unique challenges.  Social distancing means that the lifeblood of the Alcoholics Anonymous program has been fundamentally changed. 

As daily life has changed recently, we've all been forced to think about the role of human interactions in our lives. For many recovering alcoholics, the fellowship they find at in-person meetings plays a crucial in their continued sobriety.  

So, what can be done?  Below are 5 benefits of continuing your recovery via AA phone meetings.

1. AA Phone Meetings Offer Fellowship

We all know there are 12 steps to follow, but for many people, the relationships they create and maintain at AA are the real benefit. Even if you can't be physically together to give each other a hug or handshake, it's crucial to maintain your important relationships digitally.

No, it's not quite as good. But, it is infinitely better than nothing!  

The lack of interaction is often what brings on the desire to relapse. So, don't underestimate the value of talking to your peers. Just talking to your AA group, even on the phone, can do wonders for your mental health and stamina to fight temptation. 

2. Opens Up New Relationships

The switch to online or phone-based meetings offers a unique chance to meet new people you might never have encountered before. 

Perhaps you're very content with your current relationships--that's great! But if you want to branch out, this is the time.

Online resources, such as through AA, other groups, or on our website are great places to start.

3. Can Join More Targeted Groups 

Joining an online AA meeting doesn't just let you meet more people, it can also facilitate joining a more targeted group meeting.  There are specific groups for women, men, young people, LGBT people, and many others. 

If your normal, in-person group doesn't offer this kind of focused attention, going online is a wonderful chance to try it out.  

4. Can Attend More Meetings

Recovery looks a little different for each person, and for some, a daily (or even more!) meeting is what they need.  Luckily, in many areas, this is typically possible. But for those in rural areas or those that are less mobile, getting to multiple in-person meetings is difficult.

The huge rise in demand for remote AA meetings during this pandemic has created the silver lining of virtually unlimited meetings to join at any time of day. 

Take advantage of this and log on as often as you need to.

5. Allows More Anonymity

Finally, if nerves or embarrassment normally prevent you from participating, a phone call to a remote AA group allows great anonymity.  You can be as forthcoming about your personal life or identity as you're comfortable with. 

Also, with the phone option, as compared with Zoom or other video-conferencing options, there is no visual element.  Your fellow group members will only hear your voice. 

Keep it Up

While circumstances have changed for attending AA meetings, there are actually some benefits to trying out AA phone meetings.  Keep it up, and stay focused on that next coin.

It's not exactly the same as the in-person experience, but the increased options for remote meetings offer a great way to keep your recovery going strong.