Archives for Recovery

Recovery

Using Technology in Sobriety

Over the course of the last several years, I’ve written repeatedly about the ways in which technology can both facilitate and exacerbate addictions. For instance, drug addicts can purchase and abuse “prescription” medications through the Internet, set up buys with local dealers via text messages, and learn about certain parties – events at which drugs are likely to be prevalent like raves, ragers, and smoke outs – on social media. Meanwhile, compulsive...
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Addictions

Recovery from Cybersex Addiction: Part One – Initial Action Steps

For the last five years (at least), Jerry, a handsome 36-year-old office manager, has put the search for sex ahead of all else – even though he’s not having any in-person sexual encounters. Instead, he looks at and masturbates to hardcore pornography for several hours each weeknight and all day on the weekends, and occasionally he engages in mutual masturbation with strangers via webcam. Until a...
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Recovery

Addicts Just Want to Have Fun (in Recovery)

All Work and No

Jack a 52-year-old divorced high school guidance counselor, after a stint of inpatient substance abuse rehab, had nine months sober from both alcoholism and marijuana addiction. In addition to working 8 to 5 every weekday, Jack kept a journal, meditated daily, and attended at least one twelve step meeting each evening. He also met with his therapist once per week and his twelve step...
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Recovery

GLBT Addiction and Recovery: An Interview with Jeff Zacharias

Because I sometimes find that the issues therapists deal with differ by region, I like to chat with men and women at the forefront of our profession in various areas of the country. Among these clinical leaders is Jeff Zacharias, Owner, President, and Clinical Director of New Hope Recovery Center in the Lincoln Park area of Chicago. New Hope primarily serves Chicago’s LGBT community. Jeff also has...
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Recovery

The Missing Treatment Link – Viewing Addiction as Symptomatic of Disordered Intimacy

Escape versus Connection

Alcoholics and drug addicts don’t drink and use to feel better; they do it to feel less. In other words, addiction is a disease of escape and dissociation from stress and other forms of emotional discomfort. This means that substance abusers don’t get drunk or high because they’re looking to engage with other people, they do it because they’re...
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Recovery

Intervention and Addiction Case Management: An interview with Cindy Feinberg

Cindy Feinberg is a recovery coach and addiction case manager in New York City. She and her staff are committed to helping addicts and their families move toward recovery and a better life. She coordinates on an ongoing basis referrals to treatment specialists (treatment centers, therapists, interventionists, sober companions, MDs, and the like), at the same time managing all other...
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Recovery

A Call to Action: One Way to Make Treatment Feel Safer

Dealing with Shame and Vulnerability

Few places call upon people to be more vulnerable, more often, than addiction and behavioral/mental health treatment settings. Complicating matters is the fact that people who enter treatment for addiction or any other highly destructive psychiatric disorder are nearly always filled with shame - feeling as if they are inherently flawed, defective, less than, and unworthy. Sharing about these feelings and...
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Shame Resilience and The Daring Way™

Shame is the intensely painful feeling or experience of believing that we are flawed and therefore unworthy of love and belonging.
 - Dr. Brené Brown
Training the Trainers

In early November, forty addictions and mental health staff from Elements Behavioral Health facilities nationwide gathered at The Ranch treatment center near Nashville, Tennessee for three days of intense and rigorous professional training. Our goal was to experience and learn the new Daring Way™ shame resilience curriculum, which is based on the extensive research...
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Recovery

Is There a Need for “Country Club” Rehabs?

Not long ago the New York Times published a rather vitriolic article titled “An Intervention for Malibu.” For the most part, the Times chose to denigrate the 35 state-licensed drug and alcohol rehab facilities located in the small, upscale seaside village just outside Los Angeles. Much of the contempt centered on the fact that media vans and crews consistently clog the Malibu streets, with shutterbugs and TV...
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Recovery

Trauma and Addiction Treatment: The Differences in Male and Female Clients

Mars vs. Venus - in Recovery

We have long known that there are significant differences in the ways that men and women think, act, and relate. To a large extent these differences are neurobiological in nature as male brains and female brains show significant structural differences. For starters, the brains (and heads) of boys and men are about 9 percent larger than those of girls and...
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