What Does A Sponsor Do In Alcoholics Anonymous?

May 2, 2023

An AA sponsor is an experienced member of the 12-step community who has made a commitment to helping others in their recovery. They are a great resource for anyone who is struggling with alcohol misuse.

There are no formal sponsorship rules, but the best sponsors have a year or more of sobriety and seem to be enjoying their sober lives.

What is a Sponsor?

A sponsor is a member in Alcoholics Anonymous (AA) or Narcotics Anonymous who acts as a mentor and guide to a newcomer. They help a person in recovery get into the program, understand it, and work their way through the 12 Steps.

A good sponsor will have a deep understanding of the program and will be willing to share their experience and guidance with others. They will also be able to check in regularly with the sponsee and offer their support, empathy, and sympathy.

Finding a sponsor can be a difficult task, but it is possible to find someone who matches your personal preferences and values. The best place to start is by looking for people in your AA meetings who have completed the steps and have been sober for at least a year.

You can try letting the leader know that you’re looking for a sponsor or asking other members one-on-one. If a person turns you down, don’t take it personally. It may be that they don’t have the time or are not a good fit for your needs.

The Role of a Sponsor

The sponsor’s role is to help you understand how the 12 Steps work and to support you in your recovery. This is a vital role in AA, and it can make a big difference for your long-term sobriety.

A good AA sponsor is someone who has been in the program for a while, knows the 12 steps and is active in the AA community. They also have a moral compass and can give you support if things start to get tough.

Research shows that having a sponsor is beneficial for substance use outcomes, which makes finding a sponsor a very important part of the AA experience. A primarily qualitative study looked at the roles of 38 AA sponsors (Whelan, Marshall, Ball & Humphreys, 2009).

They found that the primary role of a sponsor is to encourage sponsees to engage in the program and engage in regular contact. It is also the sponsor’s role to carry the message of AA and share personal experiences of alcohol recovery with their sponsees.

The Sponsor’s Responsibilities

The sponsor carries out the primary responsibility of helping a new member understand and practice the 12 Steps. He also assists him in understanding the principles and objectives of service, as well as in performing the work of the program. He must be a good listener and use his moral compass whenever he senses that the prospect is losing hope or is prone to relapse. He must attend several meetings in the neighborhood so that he can get a broad view of the structure of Aa and help the prospect select the home group that suits his individual needs. He must impress upon the prospect that he is always welcome at meetings, and that he can change his home group at any time.

The Sponsor’s Limitations

There are a few limitations that an AA sponsor has to meet. The most important one is that he or she should be an AA member who has been sober for a year or more and have a lot of experience using the program in their daily lives. This person should be able to share their experiences and provide useful tips that can help other members in their own journeys towards sobriety. It is also helpful if he or she has a good personality and is willing to listen to members.


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