Alateen is Al-Anon’s recovery program for young people (mostly teenagers up to age 19 years) who are living with or affected by the problem drinking of another person. The information about Al-Anon on our home page and newcomer’s page also applies to Alateen.
In Alateen, as in Al-Anon, members share their experience, strength, and hope with each other. We do not tell others what to do about their own personal situation. In Alateen, you will meet other young people who share similar feelings and experiences, even if not your exact situation. If you are “Alateen-age” and you feel you are affected by another person’s drinking, you are welcome in Alateen, whether you think the person is an “alcoholic” or not, whether the person is still drinking or has stopped drinking, whether or not the person is living with you or not, and whether the person is directly related to you or not
Alateen meetings are free. There are no dues or fees for membership, although meetings will generally “pass a basket” for voluntary contributions. You do not need to register or sign up to attend; you can just find a meeting and come. You do not need written permission to attend. Local Alateen meetings are included on our meetings page.
The World Service Office does not register Alateen “on line” meetings, due to concerns of the teens’ safety from potential Internet predators. Any “on line” meetings, chat rooms or bulletin boards that call themselves “Alateen” are not sanctioned by, registered with, or in any way monitored by the Al-Anon World Service Office.
The age range of Alateen members varies between different meetings and different areas. Some meetings have a lower age limit of 12 or 13; some accept children under age 12. The upper age limit for Alateen may be 18 to 21, again depending on the meeting and area. When Alateen members reach the upper age limit for Alateen, they are encouraged to attend regular Al-Anon or Al-Anon Adult Children meetings, where they will be welcome! The pamphlet, “Moving On! From Alateen to Al-Anon” describes transitioning from Alateen to Al-Anon, and may be available at local Alateen or Al-Anon meetings, from the Literature Distribution Center (please see our contact us page to contact the District 5 Al-Anon literature distribution center,) or it may be ordered from the Alateen literature area of the Al-Anon World Services web site
Everything said in Alateen meetings should be kept confidential. No attendance list is kept and no reports of attendance are made.
The Alateen program is not designed to help teenagers who may have an alcohol problem themselves to stop drinking. Teenagers who want help to stop drinking are welcome in Alcoholics Anonymous. However, Alateen welcomes teenagers who are affected by another person’s drinking, and who also are or may be alcoholics.
The Al-Anon publication, “Facts About Alateen” (P-41) provides information about the Alateen program.
“Facts About Alateen” (P-41) is reprinted with permission of ©Al-Anon Family Group Headquarters, Inc., Virginia Beach, VA.
The Al-Anon publication, “Is Someone's Drinking Getting To You? Alateen Is For You!” (S-20) may help you decide if Alateen might be of help to you.
“Is Someone's Drinking Getting To You? Alateen Is For You!” (S-20)
Reprinted with permission of ©Al-Anon Family Group Headquarters, Inc., Virginia Beach, VA.
Excerpts from volume 44/number 2 of “Alateen Talk are reprinted with permission of ©Al-Anon Family Group Headquarters, Inc., Virginia Beach, VA.
Additional literature about Alateen and for Alateens is available in the Alateen literature area of the Al-Anon World Services web site.
All registered Alateen groups are “sponsored” by Al-Anon members, who help facilitate Alateen meetings and functions. Each Area of Al-Anon has developed a process to certify Alateen sponsors and to register Alateen groups that ensures that Alateen sponsors and groups meet the Area's safety and behavioral requirements.
The World Service Office offers several resources for people interested in sponsoring an Alateen group:
The Al-Anon publication, “Alateen Sponsorship--Is It For You?” (S-27) provides an overview of the requirements to be an Alateen sponsor.
The Al-Anon World Services Office publishes, “A Guide For Sponsors Of Alateen Groups,” (P-29,) a free, four page guide describing who Alateens are, how to start an Alateen group, and what Alateen Sponsors do (available from some area literature distribution centers or from the Al-Anon World Services web site literature area.)
The Al-Anon World Service Office developed a guideline for anyone interested in Starting an Alateen Group (G-19.)
The Al-Anon World Service Office developed a guideline for members interested in starting Alateen meetings in schools (G-5.)
The Al-Anon World Service Office developed a guideline for Area Alateen coordinators (G-24.)
The Al-Anon World Service Office developed Alateen Safety Guidelines (G-44) for ensuring safety for Alateen members and sponsors.
The Al-Anon World Service Office developed a guideline for Alateen conferences (G-16)
How To Become an Alateen Sponsor in the Michigan Area
Al-Anon Family Groups of Michigan provides guidelines for Al-Anon members interested in becoming involved with Alateen service, as Alateen group sponsors or in any other capacity. The guidelines provide information on qualifications for and responsibilities of Alateen service, and helpful information for working with Alateen groups and Alateen members and for dealing with situations and questions that may arise. “Michigan AFG Required Guidelines for Alateen Service” are posted below.
The Michigan area requires all Al-Anon members interested in Alateen service to be “certified” by the Michigan area. To become certified, members must be at least 21 years of age, must have two or more years of experience in Al-Anon, must submit information to Michigan Al-Anon Family Groups, and must have a “background check” done by Michigan Al-Anon Family Groups. This is to ensure the safety of Alateen members and groups, and of all who are involved in Alateen service. Members involved with Alateen service find it extremely rewarding and well worth the time and effort required to submit the required forms! If you have additional questions about sponsoring or supporting Alateen in the District 5 area or about the process to become certified, you are welcome to e-mail or contact us.
The forms for Al-Anon members to become involved with Alateen service are below. These forms must be filed out in full and sent by ground mail (not e-mail) to the Michigan Alateen coordinator! For the mailing address for the Michigan Area Alateen Coordinator, please e-mail us at firstname.lastname@example.org us
w Form for Al-Anon members to become involved in service to Alateen: please click here.
w Form for the “background check” required for certification please click here.
w Form for Alateen group registration and for updating Alateen group records: please clickhere(This form is used to update Alateen group records with both the Michigan Area and World Service Office. It should be sent to the Michigan Area Alateen coordinator, as above.)
Additional Alateen Information
Alateen stories from the Forum, Al-Anon’s monthly magazine:
All stories are reprinted with permission of The Forum, © Al-Anon Family Group Headquarters, Inc., Virginia Beach, VA. All Rights Reserved.
If you are thinking about what Alateen may be able to offer to you, we hope these stories from Alateen members will help you know that you are not alone, and encourage you to try the Alateen program and attend a meeting.