From a 19-years-sober AA veteran who is not a joiner and hates most things.
  1. It's not actually a cult. For one, we're missing the charismatic cult leader. (I've volunteered to be it and no one seems interested.) Plus, trust me, if I'm going to join a cult, it's going to be wayyyy more dramatic and entertaining than AA. And there will be costumes. But I digress...
  2. No one needs you to believe in God. (Okay, that one old timer REALLY wants you to accept Jesus Christ as your lord and savior. Ignore him.) Letting this misconception stand in your way is a sad mistake. In any moderately sized area you'll find AA meetings for atheists and agnostics. If people at a meeting don't understand, find another one.
  3. Some of us are dicks. That's true for any group. But don't let it stop you. There are also some amazing people who will have your back in a way you've never experienced it before. If your expectation is that you need to like everyone, HOW ARE YOU EVEN EXISTING IN THE WORLD?
  4. We keep going back to meetings for a host of reasons, but not because somebody's making us or because we're too feeble-minded not to. I have a place I go regularly where people show up, tell the truth and truly "get" one another. Why WOULDN'T I keep going? I don't have that in any other area of my life.
  5. For the most part, women sponsor women and men sponsor men. Not like on TV.
  6. Getting sober is not fun. I truly believe you're not supposed to enjoy that part. (Wouldn't be much of a deterrent if it were easy or fun.) But learning to live life sober can be insanely funny and meetings are often the place I laugh most in any given week. We definitely don't take ourselves too seriously.
  7. My highly unscientific estimate is that a cool 99% of AA members don't actually care if you join us or agree with us. To clarify: we're thrilled if anyone wants to join in on our approach to sobriety but we don't actually wanna cram it down anyone's throats. We're way too busy thinking about ourselves to try and convert anyone. You do you.