Breaking the Cycle

Program 197 • 29 mins


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Two members of Alcoholics Anonymous movingly describe how they got into trouble with alcohol and other drugs. As part of their odyssey of recovery, they’ve had to go inside to do self-reflection and to identify emotional patterns (often begun very young) which fed into problematic behaviors. They also discuss the rich resource they found in AA, which has an estimated 100,000 local groups worldwide. Attendance is free and anyone concerned about their drinking is welcome. For millions of people, AA’s peer-led, confidential program of twelve time-tested steps has led to a full life in sobriety. People who feel broken and often ashamed have been transformed and now lead healthy lives. In this segment, we hear what it’s like to face one’s demons and to attain a victory, through the support of others wrestling with similar problems.

I remember just being on the ground, you know, in the cell, and watching the stars, and just bawling. You know, you reach that jumping off point, right, that I hear talked about. I just couldn’t go down that path, you know, any longer, but I didn’t also know how I could make it stop either. Without question, the hardest thing I’ve had to confront in my life. Probably the hardest thing I’ll ever have to confront, you know? It is, and continues to be, my Mount Everest.”


I went [to the AA meeting], and I walked in. It was a speaker meeting, and somebody was telling their story. At this point, I felt like, “I am in the right place. I’m just in the right place. Here is where I can tell the truth.” And for somebody who had spent so many years hiding and lying, to be in a place where I felt I could tell the truth, it was like crossing a threshold, and knowing that if I went back across that threshold I would always know that that threshold existed.”



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