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How Do I Get a Sponsor?

12-Step recovery fellowships, like Alcoholics Anonymous and Narcotics Anonymous, recommend that a newcomer get a sponsor to take them through the twelve steps. A sponsor is someone who has been through the steps and is willing and able to bring a newcomer, or “sponsee”, through the work in the same way that they had. Choosing a sponsor can feel like a scary prospect, but it is of incredible importance if one wished to achieve sobriety through the 12-Step recovery process.

Sponsorship is a part of the 12th Step, which states: “Having had a spiritual awakening as the result of these steps, we tried to carry this message to alcoholics, and to practice these principles in all our affairs.” When we get through the steps, we turn to help others get out of the cycle of addiction in the same manner that we were able to. Newcomers will notice at meetings that there is usually a time when the chairperson asks all willing sponsors to raise their hands. This is so the newcomer can go up to one of those people after the meeting to ask to be sponsored. Some meetings will ask anyone who does not have a sponsor to raise their hand so that all willing sponsors will know to speak to the newcomer after the meeting.

Newcomers may be shy about the prospect of speaking with strangers at a 12-Step meeting, but Alcoholics Anonymous explains, “Whether you are a newcomer who is hesitant about “bothering” anyone, or a member who has been around for some time trying to go it alone, sponsorship is yours for the asking. We urge you: Do not delay. Alcoholics recovered in A.A. want to share what they have learned with other alcoholics. We know from experience that our own sobriety is greatly strengthened when we give it away!” Some potential sponsors may not be picking up new sponsees, but as 12-Step fellowship members, they recognize the extreme importance of sponsorship and will almost always point the newcomer in the direction of someone who is willing to sponsor and who they feel would be a good match for the potential sponsee. Being a sponsor and being able to help others achieve sobriety is a gift that members of 12-Step fellowships want to pass on—a newcomer simply has to be honest, open-minded, and willing.

Resilient House knows what you need when it comes to quality treatment for addiction. Bringing together the best in clinical and holistic expertise, we provide a full continuum of care to ensure lasting wellness from detox to sober living. Cultivating resilience, our programs teach clients how to live clean, sober, and well. Call us today for information: 833-CHANGE1