This page is available in .pdf format: Teen Friendly Meeting Information
Teens are already welcome in OA meetings, but Greater New York Metro Intergroup is now making a focused effort to attract them to the rooms. These meetings will be designated as “Teen Friendly Meetings,” and “TF” will appear next to them on meeting lists.
- Teen-friendly meetings are regular OA meetings that are willing to switch their format or pitch their sharing appropriately when a young person shows up.
- Teen-friendly meetings may read in their opening format (when teens are present) something like, “We have young people present, and would all who share keep your sharing appropriate to accommodate the age of the attendees.”
- Meeting members may share their experiences from when they were young, as well as their recovery and how they are now.
- World Service suggests, for those under 18, that an adult take them to and pick them up from the meeting.
- Meetings may alter their listing on the WSO Web site www.oa.org to include the special topic “Teen-Friendly.” This would be listed as a special topic option.
- Teen-friendly meetings may keep some of the literature mentioned below readily available for when teens show up:
Available for Free Download at OA.org
Is Food a Problem for You?
Many Symptoms, One Solution
Billy’s Story pamphlet (younger than teen)
The Twelve Steps and Twelve Traditions: A Kid’s View booklet (younger than teen)
Available for Purchase
To the Teen
Dignity of Choice
OA Members Come in All Sizes: Welcome, Whatever Your Problem with Food
Suggestions for Follow up:
Each TF meeting might compile a list of individuals who came into the program in their teens and/or would be willing to talk to the new teens and possibly sponsor them.
When meetings agree to become TF meetings we ask them to notify the Outreach Committee at firstname.lastname@example.org so we can add them to a master TF list. Everyone will be able to download that list from the website, oanyc.org. This flyer will also be posted on a Teen Friendly page so that any meeting interested can be designated as TF.
The Outreach Committee would sincerely like to hear back about the experience of TF meetings. If you find an idea that works, we will happily pass it on to Intergroup, Region 6 and World Service. Thank you for your dedication and willingness to do this service. By doing so, you are helping us fulfill our primary purpose of carrying the message of recovery to those who still suffer. Please contact email@example.com.
To the Teen
If you have a problem with food, give yourself the following quick quiz. Be honest — you’re doing this for YOU!
Do you have a problem with food?
1. Do your eating habits change depending on your feelings?
2. Are you unhappy or frustrated with your eating or body size, or with your attempts to control them?
3. Do you sometimes feel you can’t stop eating even though you want to?
4. Do you often eat more than most people do at a meal or throughout the day?
5. Do you eat large amounts of food even when you’re not physically hungry?
6. Do you eat normally in front of others, but eat excessively when you’re alone?
7. Do you spend a lot of time thinking about your body size?
8. Do you try to control your body size by fasting, purging or exercising for long hours?
9. Do your eating habits, body size or feelings of shame about how you look limit your social life?
10. Do you avoid physical activities because of how you feel about your body?
11. Do you lie about how much you eat or don’t eat?
12. Do you sometimes sneak food or steal money to buy it?
13. Do you wish people wouldn’t comment about your body size or eating habits?
14. Have you been told that you really ought to eat more?
If your answer to many of these questions is yes, you’re not alone. Many people, including the young, suffer from the disease of compulsive (out-of-control) eating. The symptoms range from overeating to bulimia or anorexia. Whether you call the problem a food disorder or a disease, the good news is that there is a solution.