Families Anonymous in Tennessee, United States Directory

For many people, addiction recovery can be a long and bumpy road that’s wrought with difficult challenges. Free addiction treatment resources in Tennessee are there to provide support for anyone who needs ongoing help on their recovery path.

After a week or two of detox and a month or so of residential treatment, you’d think an addiction problem would be cured, but it’s not. The effects of chronic substance abuse can leave behind long-term aftereffects that alter the brain’s physical makeup, which changes how it works. While stopping drug or alcohol use is a much-needed first step, getting your brain to perceive and interact with the world around you like it used to takes time.

For these reasons, many people in recovery require ongoing treatment support to maintain a sober lifestyle. The good news is you don’t have to break the bank to get the support you need. There are more than a few free addiction treatment resources in Tennessee to consider.

Types of Free Addiction Treatment Resources in Tennessee

Addiction can inflict considerable long-term damage to a person’s life. The same can be said for that person’s loved ones. Addiction-based thinking and behavior impact not only you but everyone in your life. For these reasons, your spouse, your friends, even your children can benefit from ongoing treatment help. Also, it’s important for the people in your life to grow and evolve along with you. In this way, addiction’s aftereffects can be squelched on all fronts.

Free addiction recovery resources in Tennessee are available for both you and your friends and family. Here’s a handful of resources you can access:

Resources for You

12-Step Programs

The 12-Step program has become a staple within most treatment program formats, including detox, residential, outpatient, and sober living programs. The 12-Step approach originated with Alcoholics Anonymous back in 1935 and evolved into a series of 12-Step support groups that address different types of addiction. Twelve-Step programs are based on guiding principles and action-based tasks that help you replace addiction-based behaviors with healthy ways of managing daily life. Here are the three most popular ones:

  • Alcoholics Anonymous
  • Narcotics Anonymous
  • Dual Recovery Anonymous (for people living with addiction and mental health issues)

Counseling

While regular attendance at a 12-Step support group can go a long way towards keeping you on the straight and narrow, counseling takes an even more in-depth approach to addiction recovery. As far as free addiction treatment resources in Tennessee go, counseling services can prove invaluable in helping you identify the personal issues that drive drug and alcohol cravings. From there, a good counselor will help you work through these issues and develop healthy ways of managing daily life pressures and stressors. Counseling combined with a 12-Step support group provides a well-rounded defense against unexpected drug cravings and the daily challenges that prompt these cravings.

SMART Recovery

SMART Recovery offers a new, alternative approach to the support group model. Unlike 12-Step support groups, the SMART model places less emphasis on group supports and more of an emphasis on creating a “self-help” path to recovery. This fairly new treatment resource in Tennessee seeks to accomplish the same goals as the 12-Step approach by helping you succeed in the following areas:

  • Manage drug cravings and drug-using urges
  • Stay motivated
  • Create a balanced lifestyle
  • Develop a healthy mindset

Sober Living Homes

If you’re recovering from a chronic or long-term addiction problem, maintaining sobriety for the long-term requires ongoing treatment support. While a residential treatment program can help you develop a drug-free lifestyle, it’s a highly structured environment where your days are planned out. This means, when you complete the program and go out on your own, these structural supports go away. Someone recovering from a chronic addiction problem will likely struggle to maintain a sober lifestyle without some level of ongoing structure and guidance.

Sober living homes act as a bridge between residential living and going out on your own. These programs operate as semi-independent living programs where residents hold down jobs, maintain the home, and pay rent. Residents must also attend support group meetings on a regular basis and obtain a sponsor, which is someone who mentors you in recovery. For someone coming off a chronic addiction problem, this free addiction recovery resource in Tennessee provides the level of structure, support, and independence needed to prepare for the challenges of real-world living.

Resources for Family & Friends

12-Step Programs

Twelve-Step support group programs for family and friends operate in much the same way as 12-Step groups for people in recovery only each group is designed to address a specific type of relationship. For example, spouses tend to take the brunt of addiction’s harmful effects, which can cause real damage to a person’s sense of self-worth. Al-Anon groups cater to spouses and significant others.

There’s also Families Anonymous, a group that supports family members by helping them learn to cope with the atmosphere of mistrust, and disrespect that addiction breeds in the home in healthy ways. Another program, known as Adult Children of Alcoholics or ACOA, caters to adults who were raised in homes where substance abuse was prevalent. Like Alcoholics Anonymous, each of these groups follows guiding principles and provide group members with action plans for managing addiction’s effects in their daily lives. These free addiction treatment resources in Tennessee offer the level of guidance and support loved ones need to heal as they support your efforts in recovery.

Counseling

Free counseling treatment resources in Tennessee are available for anyone who’s felt the effects of addiction in their lives. Counseling provides friends and family with a means for understanding how they might be enabling the recovering addict and how these behaviors impact their quality of life. More often than not, enabling happens without a person even knowing they’re doing it. Also, counselors help loved ones address the emotional damage that addiction causes and find ways to heal. The overall goal of this line of counseling works to help family and friends hold themselves accountable for their behaviors while also holding the person in recovery accountable for their actions.

There’s no ignoring the fact that addiction has become a very real public health issue that’s reached epidemic proportions. Much like other chronic conditions, recovering from a chronic substance abuse problem requires ongoing treatment and support. The availability of free addiction treatment resources in Tennessee makes it possible for anyone to access ongoing treatment support regardless of their financial means.

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What Is Families Anonymous?

Families Anonymous (FA) is an organization dedicated to helping family members and friends of people who are addicted to alcohol or drugs.

Members began holding FA meetings in 1971. It resembles 12-step organizations such as Alcoholics Anonymous and Narcotics Anonymous (AA and NA, respectively). Like AA and NA, Families Anonymous:

- Offers both in-person and online meetings that are free to attend (but the organization also accepts donations and sells literature).

- Encourages members to proceed through a series of twelve steps to find healing.

- Features twelve traditions that provide guidance for the organization and explain what it is.

- Promotes twelve promises, which are benefits that FA claims that it can provide as well as other statements about healing.

- Respects the anonymity of its members, who can refer to themselves by their first names only.

- Provides literature that contains more about the programs, addiction, and addiction-related issues.

These similarities may help Families Anonymous members better understand their loved ones with addictions, especially if the loved ones are attending Alcoholics Anonymous, Narcotics Anonymous, or other sobriety meetings themselves.

To further guide members, FA also warns people against four destructive forces that can prevent people from healing:

1.Discussing specific religions

2. Gossiping about other FA members

3. Dominating meetings

4. Dwelling on the past

Families Anonymous Meetings

Meetings are an important aspect of the Families Anonymous organization.

The organization encourages the family and friends of people who are addicted (or people who are in recovery) to gather. Recognizing shared experiences can be cathartic. People can share what has helped them heal. Just as importantly, they can reveal what hasn’t helped them heal.

Members of FA can meet other members in various ways.

Face-to-Face Meetings

By visiting the Families Anonymous website, people can find meetings near them. The organization has meetings across the United States and throughout the world.

People who can’t find a meeting in their areas may want to consider starting a FA group near them by using the information on FA’s Starting a New Group page and ordering a free FA Starter Kit.

Virtual Meetings

For people who don’t have meetings in their area or can’t attend gatherings for other reasons, local Families Anonymous chapters host virtual meetings.

Online Meetings

Such virtual meetings are known as Meetings Without Walls (MWW). They allow people to participate in voice chats with each other in real time. FA offers a script template for MWW online voice chats.

The organization encouraged more online meetings due to COVID-19. The pandemic shut down many places that host meetings while governments discouraged or banned social gatherings.

Phone Meetings

Another way to attend remote Families Anonymous meetings is by phone. The meetings occur on Saturdays at 3 p.m. Eastern Standard Time (EST) and can be reached by dialing:

- 605-313-5141 in the United States.

- 0330 998 1210 in the United Kingdom.

After dialing either of these numbers, callers are required to dial the access code 164804# and wait for the moderator to begin the meeting.

Email Meetings

People who are more comfortable writing about their thoughts and feelings may find that the Families Anonymous E-Meeting is a good fit. It’s an email discussion group that consists of members from around the world.

In addition to its diversity, another advantage of the E-Meeting is its convenience. People can visit the group at any time of the day or night to ask or answer a question, discuss something, or read what others have posted. They can start participating online by following the instructions on the Families Anonymous Virtual Meetings page.

What Happens During Families Anonymous Meetings?

Some of the advantages of FA are its inclusivity and flexibility. Any member can lead a meeting and the organization encourages different people to lead.

Leaders don’t have to conduct all meetings the same way, but for guidance, FA offers a suggested meeting format.

For example, a meeting leader can begin by welcoming newcomers, making announcements, and asking others if they have any announcements of their own. The leader can describe what Families Anonymous is and what it does.

Members can read FA’s twelve steps, twelve traditions, and twelve promises, as well as information about drug abuse and helping by being, not doing. Members can also provide contact information to others.

After a break in the meeting, discussion time can begin. According to Families Anonymous, “Any piece of FA literature, such as a bookmark, a Step or Tradition, or a reading from Today a Better Way (TABW), makes an excellent topic for discussion.”

While anyone at the meeting can participate in these discussions, FA discourages what it calls crosstalk, which it defines as

- Talking without the leader recognizing them.

- Holding one-on-one side conversations during the meeting.

- Counseling or questioning other members.

During Meetings Without Walls sessions, members can request to make comments during the meetings and be recognized by the leaders.

Such requirements allow everyone to contribute. They allow people to focus on the speakers and let speakers truly be heard, which can provide emotional boosts when they need them the most.

Following discussion time, leaders can pass a basket for voluntary donations, ask newcomers if they have questions or comments, and ask if anyone has anything else to contribute.

At the end of the meeting, the leader can remind members that FA offers suggestions and that the program works differently for different people. The leader can also remind members that Families Anonymous values the anonymity of its members, so it discourages discussing what happened at the meetings outside of the meetings themselves.

Finally, like other 12-step groups, FA often ends its meetings with the Serenity Prayer:

- God grant me the serenity to accept the things I cannot change,

- Courage to change the things I can,

- And wisdom to know the difference.

Families Anonymous

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