Alcoholics Anonymous members insist that the twelve steps are a great method of correcting one’s life and finding peace of mind. However, the truth is that twelve step thinking is so irrational that it often causes severe damage. In order to realize this problem one must understand one of the basic foundations upon which twelve step thinking is based. They call this the spiritual axiom:
It is a spiritual axiom that every time we are disturbed, no matter what the cause, there is something wrong with us. If somebody hurts us and we are sore, we are in the wrong also. But are there no exceptions to this rule? What about "justifiable" anger? If somebody cheats us, aren't we entitled to be mad? Can't we be properly angry with self-righteous folk? For us of A.A. these are dangerous exceptions. We have found that justified anger ought to be left to those better qualified to handle it. -Twelve Steps Twelve Traditions pg90
So there you have it, straight from the literature of Alcoholics Anonymous, there is no exception to this rule. For most AA members this type of thinking is gospel. Any sane person would realize that this type of thinking has some limits but not twelve steppers.
In his book “More Revealed”, Ken Ragge describes an instance where a boy who had been sexually molested by a priest was convinced to make "amends" to the priest. This victim actually apologized for being angry about the molestation. Ragge also relates a tale of a woman who had been gang raped. She was also told to make "amends" to the rapists.
So powerful is the indoctrination and brainwashing that takes place in AA that the victims will defend their attackers. I personally knew a girl who was sent to AA, when she was 16 years old because she suffering from an eating disorder and alcoholism. She had been raped when she was 13 and molested when she was younger. Two guys in their twenties coerced this girl (who was demented from starvation and drinking) to sleep with them. They then proceeded to brag to everyone in AA about their deed and not a single person stood up for this person. But the sick and twisted part of the whole affair was that the women in the group convinced this girl that she was equally to blame for her part in the crime and she believed them. I witnessed with my own eyes and ears, this girl blame herself and defend her rapists.
If you think these are isolated incidents you should read Rebecca Fransway’s AA Horror Stories, this is a novel filled with sick thinking and terrible twelve step stories. The thing that I find tragic and disturbing is the fact that most professionals in the addiction field are either unaware of this detrimental thinking or don’t care. The worst part is that Twelve Steppers are the ones who have convinced everyone that you can’t trust alcoholics and addicts because they lie or they are crazy, therefore these stories are either exaggerations or the result of sick thinking. Don’t believe me, here is a twelve stepper stating exactly that,
If you were sick and/or dysfunctional enough to find yourself going to AA in the first place, and then had a very bad experience, there is a high degree of likelihood that your experiences in AA were deeply distorted or otherwise primarily reflected your own damaged psyche.”(Comment)
So I guess this only applies to negative aspects of AA, if this is true then why would we believe AA members when they state things like AA is great and helped them and many others? What’s to say that their positive experiences are not distorted? But the biggest line of BS that steppers use to diminish the tragic brainwashing of rape victims is that these are just isolated incidents, every organization has problems or troubled people. Right! It’s just a few bad apples in the basket. What a load crap! First of all, most of the incidents that occur with rape victims are never even brought to light. As soon as you find yourself in AA you are almost immediately indoctrinated with the idea that AA can do no wrong. It’s never the organization it’s always the person at fault. Yet somehow these victims would have never have thought to apologize to their rapist or molester until they went to AA. As far as these being isolated incidents, I don’t know how anyone in AA can say that when there are entire books written describing this sick behavior. There are hundreds of comments and letters available on websites that describe this type of twisted thinking. But according to twelve steppers everyone is either lying or distorting the truth. Maybe AA members and the organization itself should stop blaming the victim and start taking responsibility for their actions.
More Revealed Ken Ragge, page 178.
Alert Publishing, Henderson, Nevada, 1992.
AA Horror Stories, Rebecca Fransway
See Sharp Press, Tucson, AZ.
Blame-the-victim in rape cases can be seen throughout this book. Pages 47, 49, 55, and 145.
I feel a deep appreciation for Ken Ragge and Agent Orange who have done an incredible amount of research in this area. http://www.orange-papers.org/