What Are S-Anon Meetings?

Sexaholism affects more than the addicted person; it also affects friends, family members, and others close to them. Living with, or having lived with, a loved one who struggles with sexual addiction can be difficult, but in S-Anon we find that there is hope.

Meetings are a vital part of the S-Anon program, providing an opportunity to identify common problems and hear the experience, strength and hope of others. Regardless of whether the addict in your life seeks recovery, S-Anon meetings can help you begin your own healing journey.

A typical S-Anon meeting lasts about an hour and provides a safe space for members to share without interruption about their personal experiences related to a loved one’s sex addiction. Each meeting is slightly different, but you can expect to learn more about the S-Anon Twelve Steps at each one and hear how other members have applied these Steps to situations in their own lives.

In-person meetings are held in cities across the United States, Canada, and several other countries. If there are no S-Anon meetings available near you, or if you’d like to attend additional meetings, phone and online platform meetings are available every day of the week.

S-Anon meetings are for people who have been affected by another person’s sexaholism. We also offer S-Ateen meetings specifically designed for young people ages 12 to 19.  Read more about S-Ateen.  Meetings welcome everyone, no matter your gender, race, religion, sexual orientation, or relation to the addict.


What Can I Expect From S-Anon Meetings?

S-Anon meetings provide a space for those who have been affected by another person’s sexaholism to share about their common problems and to hear how other members have applied the Twelve Steps in these situations.  We find love and support when we share with and listen to other people who have had similar experiences and feelings.

S-Anon groups share many of the same principles and format of other Twelve Step groups but are specifically for those who have been affected by sex addicts.  If you’ve attended a Twelve Step group before, you may notice a similar structure to our meetings.  We also use the Twelve Steps and Twelve Traditions, but have adapted them to speak to the issues addressed in S-Anon.

It is customary at most S-Anon meetings to introduce ourselves by first name only.  There will be some readings from S-Anon Conference Approved Literature, that is, material which focuses on the S-Anon approach to recovery. (Conference Approved Literature includes only material published by S-Anon, Sexaholics Anonymous, Al-Anon or Alcoholics Anonymous.).  A meeting topic will be introduced, then members are invited to share their experience, strength, and hope on the topic.  There is no pressure to share at your first meeting. In fact, some members find it beneficial to simply listen at their first S-Anon meeting.

We give each other the opportunity to speak without interruption, avoiding comments directed at other members or giving advice.   We respect each other’s anonymity, including who we see and what is shared at meetings to allow everyone to feel safe to share. We focus our sharing on issues specific to recovering from the effects on us of another’s sex addiction. We share what is in our hearts and focus on listening to others so we can gain insight into our own problems. S-Anon meetings do not address other topics that are not specific to our S-Anon recovery, though outside the meetings you are free to seek additional help or take any steps necessary to address other personal issues you may have.

A typical S-Anon meeting lasts about an hour and not everything you hear at any particular meeting will pertain to you. We suggest you attend at least six S-Anon meetings before you decide whether S-Anon is for you.

Attendance at S-Anon meetings is free.  We do take a collection at meetings, and members voluntarily contribute what they can afford.  The money is used to pay for meeting expenses and support the S-Anon World Service Office.

We know how much courage it takes to make that first phone call or attend your first meeting. Know that you are not alone and whatever feelings you may be having now, some of us have had them, too. We welcome you to our fellowship!   Read what some S-Anon members remember about their first meetings.


How Will S-Anon Meetings Help Me?

S-Anon meetings are for people who have been impacted by someone else’s sexual addiction.  We know that taking that first step of attending an S-Anon meeting is no small feat. It can be hard to confront feelings you may have tried to avoid. But we believe surrounding yourself with others who can relate to what you’re going through is essential to recovery.

In S-Anon, we begin to realize and accept that just as we did not cause the sexaholic’s acting out, we cannot cure it either.  We are powerless to change the behaviors of others. This is inherent in Step One of S-Anon. Until we accept that we cannot change our loved one’s behaviors, we cannot begin the work of finding healing and serenity for ourselves.

The people you hear at S-Anon meetings may not have the same set of circumstances as your own, but you will probably be able to identify with some or many of their feelings. In S-Anon we discover that there is hope for changing our own lives. We hear others, who were once in the same or even worse situation, tell how they are solving their problems and growing into the people they want to be. We learn from other members how they used the S-Anon program and principles to solve problems similar to those we are now facing. Whether or not our friends or relatives ever seek recovery, becoming aware of our own self-defeating behavior in a safe environment like S-Anon is a major step toward freedom and recovery.

Has your life become unmanageable because of someone else’s sexual addiction? We invite you to attend an S-Anon meeting.  Use the Meeting Finder to locate a day and time that works best for you.


Finding Hope and Healing

When you are affected by a loved one who is struggling with sex addiction, you might feel alone, isolated, ashamed, and afraid. Few people can truly understand the impact that another’s sex addiction can have on someone.  In S-Anon, everyone has had similar experiences with another’s addiction, and we understand.

S-Anon is a place where you can be heard, understood, and accepted as you are. Use our meeting finder to find a meeting type or location that works for you, or contact us today at [email protected] to learn more.

You are now leaving the official website for S-Anon International Family Groups, Inc. This link is made available to provide information about local S-Anon & S-Ateen groups. By providing this link we do not imply review, endorsement or approval of the linked site. Thank you for visiting www.sanon.org. We hope that you have found the information you were seeking.

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