Wednesday, March 25, 2009

Dear Ken...

A note from a family member we worked with, which speaks to the effectiveness and overall positive results that were created by doing an intervention.

I would just like to thank Ken for his support and dedication to his
job. It is 5 months since our intervention with Ken and I am proud to
say my husband has been in treatment for 14 days. Ken brought me the
education I needed, the best treatment facility and a caring ear to listen.
Thanks to Ken, my sons will get their father back and I will have my
husband back. Ken is a credit to his profession and the compassion and
support he gives a client goes above and beyond. His dedication to
helping others is amazing. I will always be grateful and advise anyone
who doubts the power of an intervention, then you haven't had it
done by the best. Everyone has a bottom and Ken helped me through that
process. What is the other alternative, death? Ken keep doing what you
do best, one intervention at a time.

Monday, March 16, 2009

Restoration Through Recovery

I look at recovery in the same sense I look at restoration. Allow me to explain.
My sponsor, whom I adore, is thorough. My stepwork involves typically ten typed pages of work. Not all sponsers sponsor this way but mine does. As I go through these steps I am seeing a very clear thread come to fruition. This is the overall thread of restoration.

As I've heard a wise man say, "This is not about making a bad man good. This is about making a good man well." This is incredibly true. Addicts and alcoholics, whether born with a predisposition to addiction or not, were not born to be bad people. The process of becoming addicted and allowing that addiction to become the most important and sometimes the only priority in life is par for the course for an addict. We were born to be well, born to be whole and born to be happy. Anything that veers away from that original design is not part of the original design. The life of an addict is like building a monument. Each resentment, each painful experience in life, each time we are shorted our end of the deal is like placing a brick in the monument. There comes a time when the monument is so big and so daunting it seems insurmountable. Enter hopelessness.
Drug and alcohol treatment is the first step toward loosening the bricks of this monument. With each step taken in honesty and right motives, we are removing a rock from that wall and allowing ourselves to be accessable to the good that lies ahead if we continue walking in recovery.
My sponsor has made it clear that by working the 12 steps, we will find our "true selves" and let go of the "false selves" that addiction has created. I hear families I work with talk about how their loved one just "isn't the same ___________ we used to know." They are right. Only through progressing in sobriety will we find out exactly who we were meant to be. By the time we get sober, the wall between who we are and who we were meant to be is extraordinarilly large.
Once we get into recovery, there are very simple steps that must be taken on a regular basis to keep the monument from being formed again. In addition to working with a sponsor, going to meetings and participating in service to others, there are little things that can have a big impact in the quality of our lives. These things, in my opinion, consist of holding onto anger, negative self talk, ungratefullness and self pity. Each time we pick up the brick of negative confession (speaking negative things about ourselves, our lives or otherwise) we are building our monument. Each time we refuse to see the good that we have in our lives because we are more comfortable in our misery, we are placing a brick in the wall.
Even in sobriety, the wall can become so insurmountalbe, we feel hopeless and even angry. Nothing is so scary as a hopeless sober alcoholic or addict. It simply should not be. We have been restored. We are in recovery. These things alone are a testament to the goodness at play in our lives.
Building a monument of negativity will do much: it will cut us off from peace, it will steal our joy and will make us inaccessable to the "sunlight of the spirit". This sunlight is what allows us to see the good in our life, the good in others and the good works taking place as a result of no longer being spiritually bankrupt. See, through recovery, we are no longer living in the darkness of addiction. There is light, and not just as the end of the tunnel. We no longer have to live in the tunnel at all. By relieving ourselves of the fear, shame, hate and other character defects we discover in ourselves, we are becoming reachable and teachable to our Higher Power and the blessings He so desperately wants to impart to us.
Leave the bricks alone! They will build a monument that cuts us off from the goodness in the world and the gratitude we are to have for this new life we've been given. Take positive steps, create solid positive bricks and build on the foundation that we are creating in our sobriety. Declare positive affirmation, speak positive words and take a moment each day to reflect on the things you are grateful for. Simple? Yes. Tedious at times? Yes. Powerful? Bet on it.

Tuesday, March 10, 2009

The Reality of Meth

This poem was written by a recovering meth addict years ago. This is the reality of the drug and if you or a family member have a problem with meth, please call us right away. This addiction is not going to go away on it's own and needs serious treatment to assist the addict with reclaiming a life of freedom in recovery.

Hello, My Friend

I destroy homes. I tear families apart.
I take children and that’s just a start.
I’m more valued than diamonds, more precious than gold.
The sorrow I bring is a sight to behold.
If you need me, remember, I’m easily found.
I live all around you, in school and in town.
I live with the rich, I live with the poor.
I live just down the street, and maybe next door.
I’m made in a lab, but not one like you think.
I can be made under the kitchen sink, or in your
Child’s closet, even out in the woods.
If this scares you to death, it certainly should.
I have many names, but there’s one you’ll know best.
I’m sure you’ve heard of me. My name’s Crystal Meth.
My power is awesome. Try me. You’ll see.
But if you do, you may never break free.
Just try me once, I might let you go.
Try me twice and I’ll own your soul.
When I possess you, you’ll steal and you’ll lie.
You’ll do what you have to, just to get high.
The crimes you’ll commit for my narcotic charms
Will be worth the pleasure you’ll feel in my arms.
You’ll lie to your mother, you’ll steal from your dad.
When you see their tear, you must not feel sad.
Just forget your morals, and how you were raised.
I’ll be your conscience. I’ll teach you my ways.
I take kids from parents. I take parents from kids.
I turn people from God. I separate friends.
I’ll take everything from you, even your good looks and
Pride. I’ll be with you always, right by your side.
You’ll give up everything. Your family, your home.
Your money, your friends, you’ll be all alone.
I’ll take and I’ll take till you’ve no more to give.
When I finish with you, you’ll be lucky to live.
If you try me, be warned. THIS IS NOT A GAME.
If I’m given the chance, I’ll drive you insane.
I’ll ravage your body. I’ll control your mind.
I’ll own you completely. Your soul will be MINE.
The nightmares I’ll five you when you’re lying in bed,
And the voices you hear from inside your head.
The shakes, the sweats, and the visions you’ll see.
I want you to know, these are your gifts from me.
By then it’s too late, and you’ll know in your heart,
That you are now mine, and we shall not part.
You’ll regret that you tried me. They always do.
But you came to me. Not I to you.
You knew this would happen. How many times were you told?
But you challenged my power. You chose to be bold.
You could have said “no” and just walked away.
If you could live over, now what would you say?
My power is awesome, as I told you before.
I can take your mother and turn her into a whore.
I’ll be your master, you’ll do as I say,
Even when I tell you to go to your grave.
Now that you’ve met me, what will you do?
Will you try me or not? It’s all up to you.
I can show you more misery than words can tell.
Come, take my hand. Let me lead you to hell.

A Solution for Video Game Addiction

Just because an addiction is uncommon or not taken seriously doesn't mean that it isn't just as painful and destructive. Enter Video Game Addiction and yes, there is help.

One of the issues that I've encountered more than once in working with families who have a loved one in the throws of addiction is an addiction to video games. Some people may not consider this a real issue and that it cannot possibly affect someone in the devastating ways that drugs and alcohol do. Not so. In fact this particular addiction can present problems that do not occur in cases involving drugs and alcohol.
First, video games are a form of entertainment and most people know they can be very attractive, possibly relaxing and incredibly entertaining. However, anything, let me say again, anything that is causing someone negative consequences, yet they continue to take part in the behavior, is not healthy and should be examined further. The families I've spoke with while working for Intervention 911 have told me about their loved ones losing jobs, losing friends and significant others as well as watching their finances slowly but surely go down the drain. The unfortunate aspect of video game addiction is that it is not highly regarded as life threatening and so treatment options for this addiction are very few and far between. I would consider anything life threatening if the addict is choosing to partake in the activity instead of shower, eat or even sleep.
Intervention 911 has a solution for this rare but still very serious condition. The In-Home Treatment that is offered is an excellent option for treating this type of problem. Basically, the program of treatment we provide is one where the treatment comes to famiy and the addict. It involves the same types of therapy and education that one could expect from a large facility, yet the treatment itself is tailored for that particular addict alone. It is as private as the family and addict desires, yet is very effective at treating the problem at the source in the very situation in which it takes place. Family groups, one-on-one therapy, meditation, life skills and intensive work on the source of the problem takes place. Guiding the addict in re-entry into society is crucial to the success of this and any treatment program.
I very seriously urge anyone who feels they may not be well suited to the group dynamics, travel or being away from one's job or responsibilities for the length of a treatment program to call us to discuss our Intensive In-Home Treatment Packages.
Don't waste another day. The solution starts here.