Frequently Asked Questions
Which meeting group would be best for a newcomer?
There are only a few meetings specifically geared to new people (See the New To AA. page for a list.) The letter ‘B’, for Beginner, at the end of meeting descriptions indicates a meeting for new people.
There is only 1 requirement for AA.: a desire to stop drinking. You don’t have to talk or say anything – unless you want to. All meetings have their own ‘flavor’ (and this will change over time), so you may find one meeting more comfortable than others.
I want to get into AA but not sure where to start or look…
After you read these Q&As, read New To AA (if you have not done so already).
All AA meetings in the Harrisburg area are listed on this website. At the end of each meeting description their letters which tell more about the meeting. This Legend is on each page will tell you what the letters mean. If the meeting is just for women, you will see “W”. The “O” means an Open meeting and anyone can attend., Just pick a meeting and go!
I have never gone to an AA meeting. Where do I sign up?
There is no sign up to attend AA meetings. Just pick a meeting and go.
When you click on a day to look for a meeting, at the end of each meeting description the letters tell more about the meeting. The O means an Open Meeting and anyone can attend – like students or friends or family who want to learn about AA. Closed Meetings are just for those who want to stay sober. There is only 1 requirement to attend: the desire to stop drinking.
Which is more accurate? Printed or Online meeting information.
Because the online information can be updated at any time, it should always be the most accurate. The printed meeting schedules are dated accordingly and have the most accurate information in print.
Should you find have any questions please feel free to contact the Central Service Office: (717) 394-3238.
What is the difference between Open and Closed meetings?
Open Meetings are “open to everyone”. Alcoholics, friends, family, students, basically anyone who wants to find out more about Alcoholism and the AA program.
Closed Meetings are for people that admit (to themselves) they have a drinking problem and want to stop drinking. That’s the only requirement to go to closed meetings!
How do I get verification that I have attended any meetings?
There are no attendance records kept at AA. There are those that need verification of meeting attendance and usually the person who is ‘leading’ the meeting will be the person to sign your paperwork for you at the end of the meeting. If you do not have ‘official paperwork’ and want to keep a record then you could write up a sheet to get signed with the Meeting Name, Date, Location, Time and your Name.
If I go to an AA meeting, does that commit me to anything?
No. AA does not keep membership files or attendance records. You do not have to reveal anything about yourself. No one will bother you if you don’t want to come back.
What happens at an AA meeting?
An AA meeting may take one of several forms, but at any meeting, you will find alcoholics talking about what drinking did to their lives and personalities, what actions they took to help themselves, and how they are living their lives today.
What advice do you give new members?
In our experience, the people who recover in AA are those who:
- Stay away from the first drink
- Attend AA meetings regularly
- Seek out the people in AA who have successfully stayed sober for some time.
- Try to put into practice the AA program of recovery.