Alcoholic Anonymous Online Meetings

Medically Reviewed By Kayla Loibl | Last Edited : December 08, 
| 4 Sources

Pros Of The Online AA Meeting
Cons Of Online Alcoholics Anonymous

Alcoholic Anonymous Online Meetings.
Is the Virtual World an Effective Environment for Alcoholics Anonymous's 12 steps?

The Internet Age has changed how we go about our lives, and this is no different in the world of alcoholism recovery.

Alcoholic anonymous online meetings are becoming increasingly popular and opening up new ways in which the alcohol dependent can manage his or her condition.

This innovation has facilitated the continuing dominance of Alcoholics Anonymous. It is now, more than ever, seen as the 'only' viable way to recover from alcoholism.

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In The Past We Had....


  • Since it's advent in 1935, Alcoholic's Anonymous, or AA as it is more commonly known, has been holding meetings where those addicted to alcohol can find support and accountability by talking to fellow alcoholics.

    These meetings take place in private homes, churches and other meeting areas in just about any town across the country, as well as in most countries throughout the world.

And Today We Have....


  • In the mid-1980s, as home computers become the latest thing, the electronic version of the early telephone therapy began to grow.

    In the beginning, Alcoholic's Anonymous chat was cumbersome, limited to the crude BBS and email systems then available.

    As the technology advanced, so did that of Alcoholic Anonymous online meetings until today when you can access an online meeting any time of the day or night.

    From instant live AA chat rooms to discussion forums dedicated to each of the Alcoholic's Anonymous 12 Steps, someone striving for sobriety can find others to reach out to.

It is important to keep in mind, that AA, whether it be online or offline, has ONLY a 5% success rate after 3 years. 

For alternatives to the AA/12 steps model, read AA alternatives.

What's Good about Online AA Meetings?

There are some definite pros to having the ability to access Alcoholic Anonymous online meetings.

With the nature of the internet, people can access a group around the clock, every single day. Since users are from all over the globe, you will almost always be able to find another soul to chat with. Often that is all that is needed to stave off the desire to pick up a drink – just talking about it and having the other person understand can be a huge relief.

Alcoholic Anonymous meetings

Writing about your desires for a drink as well as your reasons for not wanting to give in to the urge is often a cathartic experience. That's why many counselors in alcohol rehab programs will recommend that you start a journal.

There is something about the act of writing it all down that can lift a weight from your mind as it gives you an outlet to explore feelings that could be hard to verbalize. Some find it easier to write about their addiction and their journey to healing than they do to actually talk about it.

It is also easier to not be self-conscious or embarrassed when you are not face-to-face with a bunch of strangers.

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Are there Downsides to Alcoholic Anonymous Online Meetings?

Yes, there are cons to online Alcoholic Anonymous meetings.

For some people, it's that contact with other people that is what they need to keep them going. It is far too easy to shut oneself off from human contact and do everything from behind a computer screen. This could lead to unhealthy emotional states in a recovering alcoholic that could end in depression or backsliding into drinking again.

Another major con that should at least be considered is the fact that Alcoholic's Anonymous meetings are supposed to be completely anonymous – there is no record of members or attendees and you only have to give your first name.

While on the face of it, you may think it's just as anonymous on the web but that's simply not the case.

With most, if not all Alcoholic Anonymous online meetings, you will need to register with the site hosting the meetings. Most online AA meetings will only ask you for a first name but with all of them you must give an email and somewhere in the site's database is a record of your IP address. These two things can be used to find your identity within a matter of a few minutes.

If you found this page helpful, then the following may be of interest to you:

Lead Writer/Reviewer : Kayla Loibl

Licensed Medical Health Professional 


I am a Mental Health Counselor who is licensed in both New York (LMHC) and North Carolina (LCMHC). I have been working in the Mental Health field since 2015. I have worked in a residential setting, an outpatient program and an inpatient addictions program. I began working in Long Island, NY and then in Guelph, Ontario after moving to Canada. Read More

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