Alcoholics Anonymous Open Meetings
AA open meetings are literally open to every member of society. Whether one is an alcoholic or not doesn’t matter, they are welcome to attend the open meetings of the AA fellowship. One will often see family members, friends and sometimes just people who are curious about the AA program for themselves or for others. However, there is a condition for attending these open AA meetings. It is that nobody attending can disclose, at any point, the names of those who are part of Alcoholics Anonymous. This makes sense as the anonymity is at the basis of the philosophy of Alcoholics Anonymous.
The AA open meetings are actually more formal in nature than the close meetings. There is usually a leader of the AA meeting and speaker for the meeting. The leader of the meeting starts off the meeting with an introduction. He also is the one to introduce all the speakers during the meeting. And when the meeting reaches the end, the leader is the one to put an end to the meeting officially. The speakers themselves are more often than not AA members.
They will speak about alcoholism ad about their experiences, including their experience with Alcoholics Anonymous. They also go over their own interpretation of the Alcoholics Anonymous recovery program which can be very interesting to many people in the audience. Of course, it is made clear that the speakers are only speaking for themselves. They are not general instructions about AA or alcoholism, but more their own viewpoint and how they, themselves, experienced it.
When the AA open meetings are finished, there is often a social period. They will serve coffee, cookies and other foods and drinks. This gives a chance for everyone to socialize and talk about their views of the meeting. They can also go over their own view of the recovery program and talk with several AA members, and everyone can share their experiences.