Outcomes: Free to live, or Cult Membership?

We don’t hire marketers to write testimonials like everyone else does, but, with permission, we do post the unsolicited ones we receive. It’s especially gratifying when the comments come from a client we saw long ago and whose on-going success shows the difference between research and outcome-based work and bumper sticker based mindlessness.

Regarding a recent Newsletter, a client from long ago wrote::

“I’m with you.

Before I met with you and Mary Ellen in 2015, I met with one other non 12 step health professional (psychologist? Psychiatrist?) in my area. While he did no harm, it occurred to me that it was not in his best interest (financially) to help me stop drinking, and I didn’t stop under his short-lived tutelage.

AAA was not an option for me mainly because I see no evidence of a supreme being (at least not one I’d want to be associated with) and because AAA is not really “anonymous”.

Finally, the Naltrexone was key for me to be able to handle the relatively short term effects of eliminating the “habit“of drinking alcohol from my daily activities.

You guys saved my life… plain and simple. It took a willing subject and a desire to change on my part, but your guidance saved my effing life.

If anyone were to ever ask me how I quit, I will gladly refer them to you.”

This is the type of comment we most appreciate and imagine you will find reassuring, too. Yes, most of our clients do “recover,” not dwell in the purgatory of “in recovery.”

A Closer Look at Commonly Medicated Conditions

As we have often noted, various underlying conditions are commonly self-medicated with alcohol. Some, like anxiety, are usually well recognized in ourselves and the relationship with alcohol easily understood, alcohol being the best short term anti-anxiety “cure” ever discovered.

Other conditions, however, have a more complex relationship with alcohol and deserve a more complete understanding.

Consider boredom as an example. Boredom, like depression, thrives on inactivity. In both cases a downward spiral runs something like this: the less we do the more bored and depressed we become. The more bored and depressed, the more we drink. The more we drink the less we do. As we descend we also become more critical of ourselves which further fuels our endless ruminating and guilt.

Then there are the unbalanced relationships that may exist between partners/spouses or family members or even within cultural norms. Deviation from expectations can lead to using alcohol as an escape or as a passive-aggressive FU towards the oppressor(s) real or imagined – even when the oppressor is ourselves.

The list goes on with each person’s mosaic of medicated conditions being unique as are the possible remedies. That’s why we work with individuals because you are, after all, an individual, not part of the 12 Step herd.

So, please, think about what you want – fixing the problems? Or melting into the security of hiding out in a flock you don’t belong to. Short term discomfort with real change? Or permanent discomfort with failing to rise to the occasion and accepting a pseudo-life?