By Brenda Waters

PITTSBURGH (KDKA) – With the COVID-19 virus keeping most of us inside, with the exception of essential outings, stress and depression have almost become the norm for some.

Imagine if part of your recovery from alcohol or drug abuse depended on group support and contact.

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KDKA’s Brenda Waters talked with a member of Narcotics Anonymous who says it’s

“Usually a hug at Narcotics Anonymous is our standard. Just grab a person, give them a hug and tell them ‘welcome, you’re in the right place.’”

But Rich M. says lately, that meeting place has been via Zoom or other video platforms.

Rich M., a member of N.A. in Mt. Pleasant and New Stanton area has been clean for 13 years.

He says in response to the global outbreak of the coronavirus, new meeting guidelines had to be established while still maintaining a message of hope.

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“It’s not like coming to a meeting physically where we can hug them and welcome them and give them all kinds of support,” he told KDKA’s Brenda Waters. “We are trying to do the best we can with what we have at hand right now.”

Alcoholics Anonymous has also cancelled its group meeting as a result of COVID-19.

It too is now meeting online.

During critical times of recovery, people tend to want to reach and bond. It’s a form of healing.

If you need to speak to someone directly or meet someone one-on-one, you can still do that.

To reach Narcotics Anonymous: 412-391-5247. The toll free number: 888-251-2426.

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To reach Alcoholics Anonymous: 412-471-7472