Many people mistakenly think Al-Anon and Alcoholics Anonymous are the same thing. The confusion is understandable, since both programs use the Twelve Steps and group support to help people recover from the effects of alcoholism. Moreover, the names are undeniably similar.
The two fellowship’s purposes are different, though. Alcoholics Anonymous (AA for short) seeks to help those who want to quit drinking, while Al-Anon Family Groups offer help and hope for friends and families of problem drinkers. But the two programs have been intertwined from the beginning.