What is Alateen?
Alateen is for teenage relatives and friends of alcoholics. Alateen is part of Al-Anon.
We believe alcoholism is a family disease that affects everyone in the family. Alateen meetings are attended by 12-17 year olds. They meet to share their experiences of having, or having had, a problem drinker in their lives. They help and support each other.
By attending meetings, young people gain an understanding of the illness and feel the benefits of realising they are not alone. They learn that they did not cause this problem and that they are not responsible for their relative’s or friend’s drinking or behaviour. By sharing their experiences, they find solutions to their problems and hope for the future.
For Alateen meetings, phone the General Service Office on 020 7407 0215
Alateen was started in 1957 by a teenager in California whose father was in AA and whose mother was in Al-Anon.
We have a range of literature for teenagers available from the on-line shop.
In Al-Anon I learnt more about the illness of alcoholism and the understanding that we, as family, did not cause it but also, that we cannot control or cure it. We learn to focus on ourselves and our own behaviour and to make changes which will improve our lives, whether the alcoholic is still drinking or not. Al-Anon helps us to detach from the destructive behaviour within the family and to stop taking on the responsibilities of the alcoholic. We learn not to enable the alcoholic and not to challenge where this would only lead to a row.
Al-Anon gave me back my self esteem and my confidence grew as I continued to attend meetings and to help others. I now feel far more at ease with myself and relaxed as I do not take on the responsibilities of others and set my own boundaries. I am more tolerant of others and accept people for what they are without feeling the need to change them. The people of Al-Anon do not judge or criticise others but provide an atmosphere of love and understanding.
As a wonderful bonus I now have my daughter back in my life. As she saw the changes in my behaviour and attitude, she realised that she too could get help for her own problems. We have a truly great relationship as we each follow our own path to recovery.