The S-Anon International Family Groups are a worldwide fellowship of the relatives and friends of sexually addicted people. S-Anon is a Twelve-Step program based on the Twelve Steps and the Twelve Traditions of Alcoholics Anonymous. S-Anon’s Twelve Concepts of Service provide guidance in serving each other in our business matters.
What Is S-Anon?
S-Anon is a 12 Step fellowship for the friends and family members of sexually addicted people. S-Anon groups follow the S-Anon Twelve Steps and Twelve Traditions. S-Anon meetings provide a space for people to share about their common problems, find understanding, and begin to recover from the negative effects of a loved one’s sexual addiction. Members share their experience, strength, and hope with each other as they work on their own recovery.
Compulsive sexual behavior often affects those close to the addict. In S-Anon, we understand how difficult it can be to live with the sexaholism of a friend, partner, or family member—but there is hope. While we found that there was no “quick fix,” sharing with other S-Anon members who understood our pain and applying the principles of the S-Anon Steps and Traditions to our lives can lead to peace and healing. We hear from others, who were once in the same or worse situations, tell how they are solving their problems and are experiencing growth and joy. Whether or not the sexaholic in our life decides to seek recovery, we have learned that we need help for ourselves. By following the principles in the S-Anon Twelve Steps and Twelve Traditions, and attending S-Anon meetings, we have found healing and serenity.
S-Anon Twelve Steps
The Twelve Steps of S-Anon, adapted from the Twelve Steps of Alcoholics Anonymous, are the heart of the S-Anon program. Putting the principles of these Steps into practice in our lives is how we recover from the effects of living with the sexaholism of a family member or friend. The Steps provide a way for us to recognize our powerlessness over our situation, admit that we need the help of a Power greater than ourselves, and commit to accepting that help and working toward recovery. The Twelve Steps emphasize principles such as:
- Spiritual Awareness
If you’re not familiar with the Twelve Steps, that’s okay. You can find out more by regularly attending S-Anon meetings, or reading our literature, especially our books “S-Anon Twelve Steps” and “Working the S-Anon Program”.
Is S-Anon for You?
There are many different stories in S-Anon. Watch this short video to learn more about who attends S-Anon and hear members’ experiences with attending S-Anon meetings.
Still wondering if S-Anon is for you? We have a checklist of questions to help you decide whether you can benefit from what S-Anon has to offer.
How Can S-Anon Help?
S-Anon provides support to people whose lives and well-being have been affected by a loved one’s sex addiction. By bringing together people who share this common experience, members are better able to use the “tools” of the S-Anon program which include going to meetings, sharing with others, having a sponsor, reading S-Anon literature, and being of service to others in the program. The principles found in the 12 Steps and 12 Traditions allow us to develop spiritually as we are guided by the Higher Power of our understanding. We have found that earnestly working these steps, typically with the support of an S-Anon sponsor, can help us find peace, serenity, and even joy.
S-Anon is not a program for the sex addict, nor will it stop your loved one’s compulsive sexual behavior. In S-Anon, we begin to realize and accept that we are powerless over other people’s actions and that we can only change ourselves.
Your loved one needs to find their own path. In S-Anon, we learn to manage our own lives and begin our own journey of growth and healing. Along the way, we hear from and share our own experience, strength, and hope with others.
Who Comes to S-Anon?
S-Anon Family Groups are for those who are hurting in response to the sexual addiction of someone close to them. It does not matter whether that person is a family member, a partner, spouse, child, or someone outside the family like a friend, teacher, or boss. Sexaholism can affect anyone.
S-Anon is for people of all sexual orientations, genders, denominations, and races, those in a relationship or not, parents, children, relatives, friends and others whose lives have been affected by another person’s sexual behavior.
We have found that attending S-Anon meetings regularly is a vital part of the S-Anon Program. S-Anon groups meet weekly as a way for members to share their experience, strength, and hope. Our meetings are free to attend and are not allied with any particular religion or organization.
Note: If you are between the ages of 12 and 19, we also encourage you to attend S-Ateen meetings. Read more about S-Ateen.
How Do I Get Started?
We encourage anyone seeking help with the effects of living with or having lived with a sexaholic to find a meeting, either in-person near you or hosted via a virtual platform or phone. At meetings you will be able to listen to the stories and experiences of our members and discover how S-Anon can help you heal.
Find a Meeting
We found love and support when we shared with and listened to other people who had similar experiences and feelings. Sharing with other group members showed us that no situation is hopeless, and we can learn to see our problems in a new, more hopeful light.Find a Meeting