Is Marijuana Use Increasingly Accepted in 12-Step Programs?

Marijuana-as-medicine is now firmly established, and many of us have used it to wean ourselves off more dangerous drugs. Yet pot has always been considered unacceptable in AA and NA. In the new legal climate, will this change?

pot-leafTelling people my story of recovery from addiction has always proved controversial. It’s a story that’s echoed by the experiences of countless others, but is usually airbrushed out of mainstream addiction narratives: I emerged from nearly 10 years of addiction to cocaine and heroin without sticking to a 12-step program and without becoming totally abstinent from all drugs—in fact, using marijuana was a key part of my success.

While I’ve always been clear that the total-abstinence route of Alcoholics Anonymous and the rest wasn’t right for me, I have no bones to pick with 12-step programs. Many of my good friends frequent the rooms and tell me that they’ve found them enormously beneficial, lifesaving even.

Still, most of the negative reactions to my recovery story have always come from “friends of Bill.” Bill Wilson, AA’s founder, used LSD andbelieved in its potential to help alcoholics recover. But hearing that I used marijuana as a tool to wean myself off heroin seems to incense some of the 12-step faithful. Read more…


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