12 Steps 12 Stories had its origins back in the late 80s. I worked as a drug and alcohol counselor in an outpatient counseling center. While parents attended counseling sessions, their children were in my care.
The agency was a pioneer in addressing the needs of children of alcoholics. They believed that families in recovery drive successful outcomes.
I searched for materials for children about the disease of alcoholism but found it difficult to find information about recovery.
Week after week we worked to understand the alcoholism and drug addiction of their family members and heal some of their hurt, anger, and sadness.
The pivotal moment when one of the children in the group named Mikey asked, “What’s mommy doing now? She still goes out at night” was the catalyst that inspired me to create my collection of stories.
I tried to explain how Mommy was going to meetings of Alcoholics Anonymous. She met with people who shared the same problem and who had found a solution.
I went home and wrote a story to tell them something about recovery. I wanted to help them understand the principles of the program their parents were learning to live. As I finished, I realized it corresponded to one of the 12 steps. That’s when the idea was born. I would write one story for each step.
Driven by the belief that if families had simple, age-appropriate materials to share, they might have an important conversation with their children.
I knew this was a complex subject to broach, but these stories give parents, grandparents, relatives, counselors, therapists and members of the clergy a platform to start a much-needed discussion.
The National Association for Children of Alcoholics claims ‘children are the first hurt and the last helped’. Let us break the uncomfortable silence that restricts our chances of serving these children.
These stories contribute to family recovery and help break the silence.
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