In the last couple of weeks, I’ve had several phone calls from recently graduated patients, or their family members, telling me that they are struggling to stay in recovery, and asking for guidance regarding relapse prevention. I think this is largely because of the COVID pandemic’s resulting self-isolation. The consequences of the pandemic—isolation, loss of social connection, being left to our own devices (literally and figuratively), and lack of exercise—all make life in recovery more difficult, and in combination sound like a recipe for relapse. What do I tell these patients and their families?
Everyone always talks a lot about self-improvement and the steps that they’re going to take to better themselves. However, when it comes to actually taking action, it can be easy to talk yourself out of making real changes. This can be especially true for individuals who have an alcohol addiction and might need to attend alcohol rehab. Human creativity can find unlimited ways to avoid the uncomfortable.
Group therapy has been shown countless times in movies and in television, particularly support or addiction related groups. Most recently, 2020 Academy Award winner, Rocketman, incorporated Elton John’s experience in group therapy during his stay at a residential addiction treatment facility as a significant aspect of the film’s narrative structure. Many people have a rough idea what group therapy is: the chairs are formed into the shape of a circle, the group is usually led by a therapist asking questions or inserting comments, and people share details about themselves to other members. Yes, the practice of group therapy is widely known, but why is it important? Why is group therapy such an important aspect of addiction treatment structure?
Sara M received her angel wings on January 8th, 2020, just a few months short of her 25th sobriety birthday. Before Sara left, she touched the hearts of many and lived her best life in the process. In this time of sadness, we find comfort, remembering Sara and her incredible journey of courage, tenacity, resilience, and hope.
So, you have a family member with an addiction problem, but you don’t know how to help them? Especially now, self-isolation and physical distancing is causing tensions to run high among family members who live together. This makes it even more difficult than usual to start a constructive conversation about a family member’s addiction.
This article will teach you effective ways of communicating constructively to help your loved one make progress towards recovery. The Five Stages of Change is a useful psychological model which describes the stages that people go through from unacknowledged addiction to stable recovery. Understanding the Five Stages of Change will help you recognize the current stage in which your loved one is, allowing you to help them in the ways that are most effective for that particular stage.