There’s free therapy everywhere, you just have to look for it
You can find free therapy regardless of where you are. Finding the right mental health therapist in NYC can be difficult. Many people asking for help come up against the same frustrating obstacles. They work a full-time job, and therefore need someone who sees clients after work hours. Someone who is in a convenient location they can actually reach. Most importantly for many, someone who accepts insurance.
We get many clients at Suntra Modern Recovery who unsurprisingly struggle to find a therapist who meets all these criteria. A lot of therapists in NYC tend not to accept insurance.
I have given many of them the same advice. Not only are there therapy options available to them every single day, but they’re also 100% free. There are 12-Step programs around New York and the world, and they really do have something for everyone.
Why would I join a 12-Step program?
The sheer abundance of 12-Step meetings makes finding one in a convenient location and at a convenient time really easy. Chances are, however, that you’re asking why you would go to a 12-Step meeting at all.
There is a misunderstanding around the 12 Steps that they’re only for people who want to stop drinking or using drugs. The reality is that 12-Step programs are not built around alcohol or substance abuse. Rather, 12-Step programs work by building a community around any particular condition.
Seeking help from a 12-Step program is a learning experience for absolutely anyone. By attending meetings, you can discover other people who have similar concerns to yours. Just getting out of the house, meeting these people, and sharing experiences generates a lot of learning. Recovery happens organically.
There are many 12-Step programs, and almost everyone will find community in one of them, and certainly there is one near you.
Alcohol and Drugs
AA / Alcoholics Anonymous
AA is the largest program with the most available meetings. It is open to anyone who is considering reducing the amount of drinking that they do. Most meetings are also open to those concerned about other drug use.
CA, CMA, MA / Cocaine Anonymous, Crystal Meth Anonymous and Marijuana Anonymous
If you’re trying to stop using any one of these substances, or have a loved one who is struggling with them, CA, CMA, and MA meetings will help you gain insight into how you can start recovering.
Relationships to Food
OA / Overeaters Anonymous
Overeaters Anonymous deals with all relationships to food, not just overeating. Here you will find people struggling with under-eating, binging, and purging as well.
Relationships to Money
UA, DA, GA / Under Earners, Debtors and Gamblers Anonymous
Each of these programs deals with an obsession around money. Under earning, debting (overspending), and gambling affect people in many different ways. They can stem from working underpaying or dead-end jobs, using shopping to escape difficult emotions, and even stock market trading. Every one of us has a complicated relationship with money. These groups offer phone and on-line meetings. Debtors anonymous is the larger of the groups with more in-person meetings.
General Situations and Relationships
A very large program with many meetings for anyone who has a relative or loved one with an alcohol program. Al Anon is a great program that deals with many personal relationships, including relationships in the family that do not involve the person with the alcohol problem, this is a great catch-all program for learning about co-dependance and trauma.
ACoA / Adult Children of Alcoholics
Many people also qualify for this program, as most families have an alcoholic somewhere in the family tree. It is a great place to deal with trauma from childhood caused by addiction.
CoDA / Co-Dependents Anonymous
This is a great catch-all program that many people qualify for. It seems like at some point in life everyone becomes co-dependent with another. CoDA describes itself as a fellowship of men and women whose common purpose is to develop healthy relationships.
Sex / SA and SCA / Sexaholics and Sexual Compulsives Anonymous
Again, a lot of people can relate to concerns about sexual activity within and outside of their relationships. SCA is the larger program with more meetings.
These are the largest programs that are most likely to have a meeting near you. Exploring meetings is a great way to find a sense of belonging and to learn from others. There is no commitment to joining and meetings are open to anyone that wants to explore the programs. Talking to people with similar concerns can be a great way to start recovery from mental health conditions.
About Suntra Modern Recovery and Adam Banks
Adam Banks is a certified interventionist at Suntra Modern Recovery. After receiving an MBA from the University of Chicago, Adam built a company that was later acquired by United Health Care. His discipline and attention to detail comes from his former career as an airline pilot, holding an ATP, the FAA’s highest license.
Adam recently co-authored Navigating Recovery Ground School: 12 Lessons to Help Families Navigate Recovery. In this lesson book Adam and John Roesch walk families through the entire intervention process. Suntra also offers a free video course for families considering hosting an intervention for a family member.