Tony A’s 12 Steps

Tony A gave a talk recorded Feb. 25th, 1991 in Orlando, Florida at the 7th Annual National Convention of Children of Alcoholics. The talk was given at an optional support group meeting before the main conference began.  During this recording  Tony briefly explains his version of the 12 Steps of ACoA.   However,  by the time Tony was making this presentation,  ACA had already approved their “official” version of the 12 Steps in 1984 at a Business Conference.   Tony didn’t get his version of the steps completed and presented to the fellowship until 1991 when he published his book.

Tony’s Steps:

1. We admitted that we were powerless over the effects of living with alcoholism and that our lives had become unmanageable.

2. We came to believe that a power greater than ourselves could bring us clarity.

3. We made a decision to practice self-love and to trust a Higher Power of our understanding.

4. We made a searching and blameless inventory of our parents because, in essence, we had become them.

5. We admitted to our Higher Power, to ourselves and to another human being the exact nature of our childhood abandonment.

6. We were entirely ready to begin the healing process with the aid of our Higher Power.

7. We humbly asked our Higher Power to help us with our healing process.

8. We became willing to open ourselves to receive the unconditional love of our Higher Power.

9. We became willing to accept our own unconditional love by understanding that our Higher Power loves us unconditionally.

10. We continued to take personal inventory and to love and approve of ourselves.

11. We sought through prayer and meditation to improve our conscious contact with our Higher Power, praying only for knowledge of its will for us and the power to carry it out.

12. We have had a spiritual awakening as a result of taking these steps, and we continue to love ourselves and to practice these principles in all our affairs.

18 thoughts on “Tony A’s 12 Steps

  1. i have listened to this and love the new steps. does anyone have a workbook based on these steps. ? not the yellow book something different?

    • I do not know if there is a workbook based upon tony a steps. I have read only his book Laundry list. And just noticed that in aca wso literature i might have seen like they say Tony A as secondary founder of aca. I might seen wrongly….

      • Yes there is. However Tony A made only first 14 laundry list but there in that book, is 4 set of them laundry list other laundry list and their flip sides….

      • This subject is such a tuff one for me. I listened to that recording and loved his approach and I started digging. I have part of a historical blurb that talks about the transition to using the AA 12 steps. Right at the point when he gave that talk and just before he published the book, the group was switched to a 12 step study under the authority of WSO. I can only speak for me but when I look at what those steps brought to ACoA it makes me sad. People are asked to uncover some of the most unimaginable traumas and assaults, only to be required to do the following steps:
        4.made a moral inventory of ourselves
        5.Admitted the exact nature of our wrongs
        6. asked God to remove all these defects of character
        7. Humbly asked God to remove our shortcomings
        8. made a list of all persons we had harmed and became willing to make amends to them
        9. Made direct amends to other people except to hurt them
        10. Continued to take personal inventory and when we were wrong, promptly admitted it.

        I realize this may not get posted but it breaks my heart to see this in place. To me, it reads like a bad rape trial in the fifties and I think it creates a loop of discovery and self-punishment that is difficult for many to get out of. Where these steps make sense for an alcoholic or addict, they make no sense at all for the victims.

        The reason?? The copyright of Tony’s book kept it from being absorbed into the AA system. They would have maintained their independent status.

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