“Like all explorers, we are drawn to discover what’s out there without knowing yet if we have the courage to face it.”
THE FIRST STEP—UNDERSTANDING
- We use drugs or alcohol for many reasons. In the beginning it can feel great, exciting, even transcendent! Sometimes we use to simply relax. We use to feel included, accepted, part of the group or to help when upsetting things happen. Sometimes we use to simply feel sane.
- Eventually however, no one seems to understand our situation, and friends and family often hassle us with recriminations and accusations.
- We become secretive and defensive in order to guard against these “unfair” attacks.
- Eventually we can become caught in a cycle of using and guilt. We feel we can neither live with our “friend” or without it. A pattern of using, shame, remorse, denial and using again ensues. We feel utterly powerless and hopeless.
- Taking the first step to get help is a courageous act of self-respect and faith. Maybe there is a better way.
- A safe haven that provides open and honest discussion is a must.
- My job is to provide this and more, such as acceptance and nonjudgmental compassionate listening.
- Understanding, knowledge and action organically grow from this type of secure and welcoming environment.
- Together, we explore and create a working plan for recovery.