I ATTENDED Alcoholics Anonymous for over a year following a period of utmost despair, worried that drinking had become an addiction (Letters, 17 May). It hadn't. I was simply looking for support, comfort, uncritical comment. I could say what I liked and people didn't run away. No matter how abysmal my life was, there were others far far worse off.

There are those who need AA to stay sober and, by remaining so, continually progress. Yes, I balked at giving over my life to a higher power. Yes, I spoke out about those who attributed their recovery to the 12 steps and did not acknowledge their own efforts. But no one slapped me down. All I ever received was support.

As for those who complain they have been emotionally damaged by AA, how damaged were they before entering those rooms? Would they have regained control of their lives sufficiently to even consider condemnation?