For the 90+% of programs based on AA and the 12 Steps, follow-up consists of the admonition, “Don’t drink. Go to AA.”

That’s a “follow-up” recommendation that is just about guaranteed to have you drinking again in very short order, just like 97% of the people who try attending AA do.

The non 12 Step programs? That varies a lot from “you can call us once,” to nothing at all, or, in at least one case, “subscribe to Ed and Mary Ellen’s Non 12 Step Newsletter.”  Hmmm. Our Newsletter is their follow-up program?

One thing is certain however – no one else offers any real follow-up.

And follow-up, at least the kind we offer, is really the most important part of ending your alcohol abuse.


You’ve been misusing alcohol in your day-to-day life and that’s also where it is, or isn’t, going to get fixed. It really doesn’t get fixed on the beaches at Malibu; or by the magic of the palms at Palm Desert; “helicopter therapy” in Utah; or the confluence of the vortexes at Sedona.

We’re sorry – but there is no magic.

Your 5 days with us is foundation work and the months of continuing support and adjustment when you return to your real life is what makes the difference between a 3% success rate and a 65+% success rate.

Call it coaching, or motivational enhancement, or accountability, or whatever you want, but having the help you need when you need it is what will make the difference for many of you.

That’s what we offer that no one else does, or can.

Just as you have the two of us focused on you and your life, you also have us invested in your success and seeing to it that you have all of the resources you need.

Yes, you also have the Newsletter, which dozens of former clients read regularly as an on-going source of support, information, and comfort.

That’s the nickel tour – 5 days of substance, not filler; 12 or more weeks of personal follow-up; and Dr. Norcross’ medical support recommendations.

It’s far more than anyone else offers, and all you’ll ever need.

“I Was Saved By A Rescue Dog!”

That’s what it says on my license plate frame.

Mary Ellen’s reads:

“My Favorite Breed is Rescue”

Part of the personal mosaic of additions to your life that we might recommend is a dog. Obviously that isn’t for everyone, preferences and circumstances always come first, but for many of us our dogs are a nearly endless source of uncomplicated comfort, affection, humor, and acceptance that we’ll never find in our human relationships.

Over 30 years ago, a billboard over the Minneapolis Humane Society showed a joyful golden retriever and the caption,

“She doesn’t care where you’ve been.
She’s just glad you’re home!”

It’s just another option to think about in devising your escape from alcohol and the assorted behavior patterns you’ve developed around drinking.

Hanging out at the dog park will do far more for you than hanging out at AA meetings.

Remember – surround yourself with the people (and dogs) and activities that reflect the life you want to lead – not the losers who are never going to get a life at all, and will do everything they can to prevent you from ever getting one, too.
It’s Scruffy!

Mary Ellen’s Scruffy will be here to greet you, and he’s a fine friend, but as the picture shows, a lousy role model.