The former heroin user recovered under impossible conditions and is now sharing the message that others can, too…
It is often suggested that individuals struggling with addiction consider therapy as a resource for their treatment and recovery. Individual therapy offers tremendous benefits in processing past, present, and potential future events, uncovering unconscious defenses and working to change negative behaviors. Individual therapy builds itself upon openness and compassion- it is a dynamic process that entails deep trust and intimacy between the client and therapist. Family therapy, however, offers a different angle to addiction issues. This kind of work activates and engages each member, defines individual parts within the addiction cycle, and creates a recipe for familial, rather than just individual, change.
With the firm warning from my sponsor and the Big Book of Alcoholics Anonymous – “Nothing counted but thoroughness and honesty.” He handed me a notebook to write in and a couple pens. He asked if I had a quiet place I could spend the time I would need to get it done. Of course, I had the time and place. He had made it very clear to me that my very life was on the line. Knowing how many times I had been face to face with the “Reaper”, I certainly did not have any doubts about that. Guys like me don’t get to knock on death’s door as many as I had. I should have been dust years ago.
Effective treatment for substance abuse disorder takes the whole person into account. After all, alcoholism and addiction are complicated issues, with a physical component as well as a psychological one. Sometimes described as a “spiritual malady” because of its complexity, substance abuse disorder is a spectrum disorder that responds to a combination of different treatment modalities.
There is a great promise in our literature. It is one of those statements that can be good news for some and terrible news for others.
Is there a magical formula for lasting recovery? If only! Sobriety, as many people have learned the hard way, doesn’t come in a pill, a bottle, a can, or a prescription. After putting in the serious work of getting through a treatment program, it’s important to commit to long term change in order to keep on the path of lasting recovery…
Regardless of the circumstance, rehab rarely constitutes anyone’s idea of optimal fun and excitement. Healing from addiction requires diligence, hard work, and tremendous effort. It requires willingness and patience- and a lot of it- in order to generate positive outcomes. Rehab is not easy. Neither is recovery. However, when successful, treatment can be the ultimate gift to restore your sanity and save your life. But, what if you’ve already done rehab? What if you already know the alleged ins and outs of the treatment process, groups, and therapies? Is it still effective? Is it still worth giving it another chance?
Let’s face it: drugs and alcohol are a huge part of gay culture. Getting trashed together, hooking up, and using recreational drugs to enhance sex are part of the package, so to speak. And that’s fine, for some people. But when you’re ready to get off the party bus and start living sober, it can be really hard to adjust. Where’s the fun? The sparkle? When sex, bars, drugs, and booze are the norm, finding a life that feels balanced and rewarding can be a challenge. Here are three ways to get into the groove of your recovery.
Rehab. It’s a word that people instantly associate with several images: A bunch of guys sitting in a circle, crying together. Standing around wondering what you’re supposed to do next—boredom. Chatting with a counselor who looks at your life under a microscope. Bland food, and no snack time. And, above all, no drugs or alcohol = no fun!
When most people think of “drug addiction” they think of the hard stuff. Heroin. Meth. Cocaine. Pharmaceuticals like Adderall or benzodiazepines. And yeah, even pot. But you may not realize that there are other mind-altering chemicals a person can even obtain over-the-counter!