How Can I Find a Support Group Meeting Near Me?

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In This Article

Participating in a support group, along with other medical and professional alcohol and drug treatment programs, can have many potential benefits. A support group may help you recover by offering social support, helping you develop recovery coping skills, enhancing your motivation, reducing depressive symptoms, and increasing your psychological well-being.

What to Expect

If you or a family member is dealing with an addiction or mental health disorder, a support group may be the ideal place to feel less isolated and to learn from others with similar problems and shared experiences.

Often, you're not required to talk in a support group—you can share as little or as much as you'd like—so you'll be able to observe the group before deciding if it's the right one for you. It's important for you to be comfortable with the group so you can eventually open up and get to know your peers.

If you or a loved one are struggling with a mental health condition, contact the Substance Abuse and Mental Health Services Administration (SAMHSA) National Helpline at 1-800-662-4357 for information on support and treatment facilities in your area.

For more mental health resources, see our National Helpline Database.

How to Join a Support Group

For most support groups, all that is required to join is a desire to begin recovery. Most people join a support group by simply walking in the door of a meeting near them. No invitation is required and there are no dues or fees. For members, there is often a voluntary collection.

That said, there are "open" meetings for members and non-members as well as closed meetings for members and prospective members only. Depending on the type of meeting, you might come across some of the following codes that indicate a more exclusive support group or additional services offered:

  • (ASL) American Sign Language
  • (BS) Book study
  • (CF) Child-friendly
  • (D) Discussion
  • (G) Gay/lesbian
  • (M) Men only
  • (P) Participation
  • (SS) Step study
  • (W) Women only
  • (WA) Wheelchair access

How to Find the Right Group for You

Your primary care physician or mental health professional is often the best place to start when finding a local support group. You can also search for a local meeting via the websites of the various support groups.

Some organizations have apps you can use to find meetings. You can still find a meeting the old-school way by looking up a phone number in the white pages of the local telephone book—or online. 

Some databases are detailed and allow you to see which meetings are for newcomers or are wheelchair accessible, non-smoking, or LGBTQ+-friendly, among other characteristics. Other pages are less detailed and may only have phone numbers or listings for you to contact the meeting organizers.

Here is a list of official mutual support group websites and their meeting listings. If you cannot locate a face-to-face (in-person) meeting near you, there are many online meetings available.

A Note About COVID-19

Many of these organizations have put their in-person meetings on hold due to the COVID-19 crisis, and are offering virtual meetings, phone calls, and emails.

Alcohol, Drug, Prescription Medication Abuse

These include 12-step groups and those with other philosophies, as noted:

  • Alcoholics Anonymous: Search for the telephone numbers of AA Central Offices and Intergroups by zip code or state. The site does not give you locations of local meetings, but the Intergroup local sites have that information. You can find meetings around the world, which can be very useful when traveling.
  • Celebrate Recovery: A Christ-centered, 12 step recovery program for "anyone struggling with hurt, pain, or addiction of any kind." The group offers Zoom as well as Facebook Live meetings.
  • Chemical Dependent Anonymous: Find a CD meeting by searching by state. It's a 12-step program supporting "abstinence from all mood-changing and mind-altering chemicals, including street-type drugs, alcohol and unnecessary medication."
  • Cocaine Anonymous: A 12-step program for cocaine, alcohol, and other mind-altering substances.
  • Crystal Meth Anonymous: Search for CMA meetings by zip code and distance. They are a 12-step program.
  • Dual Recovery Anonymous: A 12-step program for those who have a psychiatric disorder and a substance abuse problem.
  • Life Ring Secular Recovery: Search for a Life Ring meeting for drug or alcohol recovery by location or join an online meeting. The Life Ring philosophy differs from the 12-step programs in that it does not require you to rely on a higher power but believes in supporting your ability to strengthen your sober self and weaken your addict self.
  • Marijuana Anonymous: Search a list of in-person and online meetings by location. There are also apps for iOS, Android, and Windows that can be used to search for meetings. It is a 12-step program.
  • Moderation Management: See a list and map of meetings around the world or join in telephone meetings. Moderation Management supports responsible drinking rather than a philosophy of total abstinence.
  • Narcotics Anonymous: Search the meeting database by location. You can also download an NA Meeting Search app for iOS or Android.
  • Pills Anonymous: A 12-step program with meetings around the world.
  • SMART Recovery: Search the SMART recovery meeting database by country or state. SMART is not a 12-step program, but a self-help addiction recovery program for substance abuse and alcohol abuse.
  • Women for Sobriety: An abstinence-based group for women facing drug or alcohol addiction, WFS offers in-person meetings as well as videoconferencing meetings and an online support forum.

Sex Addiction, Disordered Relationships, and Abuse

Support groups for sex addiction, disordered relationships, and abuse include:

  • Love Addicts Anonymous: A 12-step program for those who have "distorted thoughts, feelings, and behavior when it comes to love, fantasies, and relationships."
  • Sexaholics Anonymous: A 12-step program for those who want to "stop lusting and become sexually sober."
  • Sex & Love Addicts Anonymous: Find a meeting by searching by state or province. This is a 12-step program for those with "an addictive compulsion to engage in or avoid sex, love, or emotional attachment."
  • Sexual Compulsives Anonymous: A list of International SCA meetings in-person and online. This is a 12-step program.
  • Sexual Recovery Anonymous: A 12-step group for those who desire to stop compulsive sexual behavior.
  • Survivors of Incest Anonymous: A 12-step program for those who are over age 18 who were sexually abused as a child.

Food and Nicotine Problem Behavior

Support groups for food and nicotine problem behavior include:

Emotional and Mental Health Recovery

Support groups for emotional and mental health recovery include:

Financial and Acquisition Problem Behavior

Support groups for financial and acquisition problem behavior include:

  • Debtors Anonymous: 12-step program for compulsive debtors.
  • Gamblers Anonymous: A group to support recovery from problem gambling and are guided by 12-step principles.
  • Spenders Anonymous: A 12-step program for those who want to recover from compulsive spending and taking on debt.
  • Workaholics Anonymous: WA meetings include phone meetings, online meetings, or in-person meetings in the United States or Internationally. This is a 12-step program for those who are compulsive about work.

For Families and Codependents

These meetings are for those who have relatives and friends with addictions and problem behaviors. In addition to these groups, there are often links to family recovery groups for specific addictions or behaviors on the sites for the programs dedicated to them.

  • Adult Children of Alcoholics: Find an ACA meeting by location search. They also have online meetings and phone meetings.
  • Alanon and Alateen: Search for an Al-Anon Family Group meeting by location in the United States and Canada. You can also use the site to find online meetings, international meetings, or phone meetings.
  • Codependents Anonymous: A 12-step program for recovery from unhealthy relationships.
  • Families Anonymous: Get a PDF file of FA meetings by state. This is a 12-step program for those who have a family member with an addiction or problem behavior.
  • Nar-Anon: A 12-step group for friends and families of people with substance use disorders.
  • Recovering Couples Anonymous: A 12-step group for couples who want to restore and maintain their relationship in recovery.

A Word From Verywell

Remember that support groups are what you make of them. If you are willing to be open and honest and a good listener who supports fellow members, you will get a lot out of your group, including hope and motivation for a healthier you.

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Article Sources
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  • Substance Abuse and Mental Health Services Administration. Behavioral Health Treatment Services Locator.