Addiction Advice – Not Every Road To Recovery is the Same

Addiction Advice“There are no coincidences in life.” I think I might have learned this in my first few years in Alcoholics Anonymous before I took some time away from it. I also think it is one facet of spiritual recovery they told me about. Most of you know, if you’ve been following me here on Ask Recovery Rob or over at Pat Moore Foundation, that I offer addiction advice…not a true and tried method of anything. Although I’ve been sober since 1992 I didn’t always hang out at Alcoholics Anonymous meetings and I don’t toot that specific horn on everything. But, what I do love is their sense of community, their sense of structure, their sense of life. Continue reading

Relapse: LAPSE Movie Review

relapseI honestly believe there are no coincidences in life. I’ve been recently going through a number of problems; most of these new to me even after 20 years of sobriety. Addiction is an insidious disease, it works, worms, and manifests in the strangest and most destructive ways. To be honest, and I guess sobriety pulls this out of me, is that I was most likely heading in the direction of a relapse. Thankfully, by some divine intervention, the director of LAPSE somehow found me. Mr. Salerno, the writer/director asked if I’d review his film. Honored to be asked, I did so, and here’s my short film review. Continue reading

Drug and Alcohol Addiction Advice – Helping Others

I have to tell you that one of the best parts of the sober community is giving back and being able to help others when they need it. Well, at least for me. It gives me an incredible amount of satisfaction knowing that someone has asked me for help and I was able to point them in the right direction. From time to time here on Ask Recovery Rob people will email me directly and need drug and alcohol addiction advice. Be it what the side effects are of a specific drug, help for a loved or help for themselves, I’ve been able offer addiction advice, people will follow it and they’ll get the help they need. Or, at least they get on the right track after.

What they do after following my addiction advice is up to them.

Just this past weekend, a person contacted me for help. This person, who shall remain gender and nameless for the sake of anonymity, seemed to have woken from a black out of sorts and realized while on a “Bender” they did something that changed their whole life. I think for some, once waking to this realization, would have continued further into the addiction, but his incredibly brave person reached out for help instead, and made the choice to change his/her life.

There are consequences to the decision made, but the most important part here is that the person has NOW taken responsibility and choosing to walk this life path sober.

I was able to make calls and send emails and everyone stepped in to help this person. This morning I received an email stating my new friend has checked in and the recovery process can begin.

I have a great amount of joy in my heart!

Recovery Rob

Addiction Advice – Relapse: Avoiding the Blame Game

We are all partial to finding blame when things fall apart, but in a case of relapse back to drug and alcohol addiction, it’s very important to just take a step back and think before you speak to a loved one who has relapsed. In short, you need to neutralize your emotions and not make your loved one feel guilty or even absolve them from guilt at all.

Taking time to blame someone tends to focus the responsibility on the blamed one and not on the problem, and also focuses on the “Who did what?” as opposed to the “What do we do about it?” Blame also implies a desire or sense to punish someone and by doing so there is a missed opportunity to resolve the problem, or identify the trigger that led to the relapse. The worst part is that the conflict remains the focus instead of finding a solution. Continue reading

Addiction Advice – Helping Someone Through Relapse

Relapse happens often, more often than what anyone would like. In fact, *according to the National Institutes on Alcohol Abuse and Addiction (NIAAA) there is evidence that nearly 90% of alcoholics will experience at least one relapse over the 4-year period following treatment. Unfortunately, there aren’t any interventions that can prevent relapse in a predictable manner.

One of the most difficult parts of sobriety is seeing a loved on return to alcohol and/or drug abuse after they’ve completed addiction treatment and began the work to make their lives better. It can be devastating to all involved. Most loved ones either throw their hands up in despair, while others will seek addiction advice that can help them get through their loved one’s relapse. After all, addiction is also about the people surrounding the addict. Continue reading

Alcohol Addiction Advice: Denial

If I am in denial, when do I know when my drinking a problem?

Great question for our Alcohol Addiction Advice Section!

As most of us know already, the word denial is the refusal to admit the truth or the reality of the situation, but I think when it comes to alcohol abuse and addiction it means, “refusal to acknowledge there could possibly be an issue.” For me, the main difference is that you don’t have to admit you’re an addict or that you have abuse issues. It is just about living in the possibility of it, to take a long look at your behaviors, and then make a decision.

In fact, denial can be one of your biggest obstacles to getting the help you need. Your passions and desires to drink alcohol might be so strong that you can’t see what’s actually happening when you do drink. You might not be able to see the big picture of the end result. Well, besides the dreaded hangover in the mornings. You could even rationalize why you drink, like, “I work really hard,” “my life is very difficult,” “people don’t understand me.” The list can be endless.

When one excuses of rationalizes their drinking in ways like this it keeps them from looking honestly at that behavior and its negative effects. Here are some other ways people deny having a drinking problem:

  • Blame others for your drinking problems.
  • Make light of the consequences of your drinking.
  • Underestimate exactly how much you drink.

This is what I always say, “If you’ve no problem with alcohol then you‘d have no reason to cover up how much you drink and what happens when you do.”