Making amends is an essential part of Twelve Step recovery.
In accordance with AA’s Ninth and Tenth Step, we make direct amends to people we have harmed in the past and to those we continue to harm.
Step 9; Made direct amends to such people wherever possible, except when to do so would injure them or others.
Most of us begin making certain kinds of direct amends from the day we join Alcoholics Anonymous.
The moment we tell our families that we are really going to try the program, the process has begun.
In this area there are seldom any questions of timing or caution. We want to come in the door shouting the good news. After coming from our first meeting, or perhaps after we have finished reading the book
“Alcoholics Anonymous,” we usually want to sit down with some member of the family and readily admit the damage we have done by our drinking.
Almost always we want to go further and admit other defects that have made us hard to live with.
This will be a very different occasion, and in sharp contrast with those hangover mornings when we alternated between reviling ourselves and blaming the family (and everyone else) for our troubles.
Pages 83-4 of the book ‘Twelve Steps and Twelve Traditions’ of Alcoholics Anonymous.