Humor & Fun

ACOA Legacies

At least half of all addicts come from addictive families or other dysfunctional families. Often their survival roles within those families included either a preoccupation with the serious side of life, or else a clown role, laughing on the outside while crying on the inside. We have known several recovering adult children of alcoholics who wore T-shirts that said, “Are we having fun yet?” They called it their ACoA T-shirt.

Use in AA

Humor is important in AA The Big Book (p. 132) suggests that if newcomers could not see that AA members’ lives are full of fun and joy, they would not want recovery.

Lack in some groups Some Twelve-Step groups are oppressive with their seriousness and self-pity. Perhaps it is due to a poor ratio of recovering to struggling members in these groups.

Creative humor One very practical aspect of humor is the relief of boredom. All addicts need to hear the same basic messages of recovery repeatedly, but it can get boring. Humor adds spice, and allows addicts to take their “medicine” with real enjoyment.

Health benefits Scientists are investigating the effect of laughter on health. Laughing stimulates the heart, lungs, upper body, and back much like exercise. A hundred hearty laughs a day can be as beneficial as ten minutes on a rowing machine. Laughing causes release of catecholamines that aid blood flow and healing.

Fun in Recovery

Recovery should involve fun and joy. Often addicts need to learn how to enjoy themselves. Instead of focusing on what they had to give up (alcohol, bingeing, certain foods, etc.), they can feel the freedom of recovery and see the variety of experiences that were not open to them before.


Humor & fun, see also: Attitudes, Codependency, Control, Family, Grace, Humility, Inventory, Meetings, Obsession, Open-mindedness, Recovery, Self-image, Slogans, Step Eleven, Surrender, Willingness.

Updated 11 Sep 2015

Creative Commons License
Addictionary 2 by Jan & Judy Wilson

is licensed under a Creative Commons Attribution-ShareAlike 4.0 International License.