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The Twelve Steps and Twelve Traditions

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The Twelve Steps

Here are the steps we took, which are suggested as a program of recovery:

  1. We admitted we were powerless over addictive sexual behavior, that our lives had become unmanageable.
  2. Came to believe that a Power greater than ourselves could restore us to sanity.
  3. Made a decision to turn our will and our lives over to the care of God, as we understood God.
  4. Made a searching and fearless moral inventory of ourselves.
  5. Admitted to God, to ourselves, and to another human being the exact nature of our wrongs.
  6. Were entirely ready to have God 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 all.
  9. Made direct amends to such people wherever possible, except when to do so would injure them or others.
  10. Continued to take personal inventory and when we were wrong promptly admitted it.
  11. Sought through prayer and meditation to improve our conscious contact with God as we understood God, praying only for knowledge of God’s will for us and the power to carry that out.
  12. Having had a spiritual awakening as the result of these Steps, we tried to carry this message to other sex addicts and to practice these principles in all areas of our lives.“These steps are the heart of our program. They contain a depth that we could hardly have guessed when we started. As we work them, we experience a spiritual transformation. Over time, we establish a relationship with a Power greater than ourselves, each of us coming to an understanding of a Higher Power that is personal for us. Although the steps use the word “God” to indicate this Power, SAA is not affiliated with any religion, creed, or dogma. The program offers a spiritual solution to our addiction, without requiring adherence to any specific set of beliefs or practices. The path is wide enough for everyone who wishes to walk it.” [From Sex Addicts Anonymous, pages 20-21]

The Twelve Traditions

Here are the Twelve Traditions that ensure unity of the Fellowship:

  1. Our common welfare should come first; personal recovery depends upon SAA unity.
  2. For our group purpose there is but one ultimate authority – a loving God as expressed in our group conscience. Our leaders are but trusted servants; they do not govern.
  3. The only requirement for SAA membership is a desire to stop addictive sexual behavior.
  4. Each group should be autonomous except in matters affecting other groups or SAA as a whole.
  5. Each group has but one primary purpose – to carry its message to the sex addict who still suffers.
  6. An SAA group ought never endorse, finance, or lend the SAA name to any related facility or outside enterprise lest problems of money, property, and prestige divert us from our primary purpose.
  7. Every SAA group ought to be fully self-supporting, declining outside contributions.
  8. Sex Addicts Anonymous should remain forever nonprofessional, but our service centers may employ special workers.
  9. SAA, as such, ought never be organized; but we may create service boards or committees directly responsible to those they serve.
  10. Sex Addicts Anonymous has no opinion on outside issues; hence the SAA name ought never be drawn into public controversy.
  11. Our public relations policy is based on attraction rather than promotion; we need always maintain personal anonymity at the level of press, radio, TV, and films.
  12. Anonymity is the spiritual foundation of all our traditions, ever reminding us to place principles before personalities.