15 in 20

Published on April 27, 2016 by in Uncategorized



Have you ever been told that the ONLY way to stop using Alcohol and/or Drugs is by going to a 12-step program/meeting?  Me too!

I was 17 when I went to my first meeting.  In 1980, going to AA meetings was all there was. It was awkward, embarrassing and I felt out-of-place particularly because I was smoking marijuana and I had to say I was an Alcoholic (even though I wasn’t) in order to stay.

I picked up my first (many more to follow) “white chip”. There was a sort of fellowship and most of the people were kind and had a desire to help. I just couldn’t accept the disease concept.  I wasn’t free from drug abuse, I was tied to a disease and going to meetings for the rest of my life. Yet with no other options, I worked the steps with sponsors, continued with the meetings and was still unhappy.   This became a revolving door for me.

There were countless (over 15) “12 Step” in-patient and out-patient programs I went through. Not to mention the Half-way houses I was “strongly-suggested”.  (By the way, have you noticed that half way houses are NEVER located in decent areas? Usually they are found in the lower-income, drug-infested areas. But that is the subject for another blog…)

Needless to say, I did not do well. I WANTED to stop using drugs. I felt hopeless. I was disgusted with myself, tired of hurting the one’s I loved and tired of all the pain. By 1999, I was living in Florida, still using drugs.  And even though I did not buy into the disease concept, it still allowed me a reason to continue using; “I have a disease”, I thought, as if to convince myself.

For six months, my father kept trying to get me to call this woman at yet another treatment center.  Because even though I had given up, he hadn’t.  I remember feeling totally hopeless.  I didn’t want to waste anymore of the family’s money nor was I willing to set myself up again to then fail. I was on a path to total destruction and in my convoluted mind, the only hope of ceasing the pain was to go on an all-out binge.

My father continued calling; trying to get me to call this woman. I finally gave in and told him I would call the person, under one condition: that he stop calling me. He agreed. I finally called the woman and as she began to talk I thought, oh I’ve heard this so many times. But some things she said I had not heard before.  That kept my interest a bit.  After she finished I said, “I have only one question.”

“How many of those DAMN meetings do I have to go to”?

She said, “NONE.”

I had NEVER heard that before.  That answer blew me away and before I knew it, I found myself agreeing to go and was on my way to do the Narconon Program. I haven’t been to a meeting in over 17 years. I live my life.  I’m happy and most importantly, I’M SOBER.


Written by guest blogger Anthony SolazzoAnthony

Anthony is originally from New Jersey, but spent a large amount of time in Florida.  He has worked at five Narconons throughout the US
and is now employed at Narconon New Life Retreat in Louisiana conducting staff training.

2 Responses to “15 in 20”

  1. Betsy West says:

    Wonderful! God Bless. So Proud of you. We need a New Life Retreat in Ohio. Our city looks like The Walking Dead.

  2. Jimmy Hartman says:

    I’m recovering and do support your endeavours

Narconon Louisiana New Life Retreat, Inc. is a BBB Accredited Rehabilitation Service in Denham Springs, LA