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A narrative approach to a sober life

The American Society of Addiction Medicine defines addiction as a “primary, chronic disease of brain reward, motivation, memory and related circuitry.” In other words, it is a complex process involving neurological, psychological, interpersonal and environmental factors.

To think that “just say no” is a realistic solution is laughable. I’m sure you’ve said no, tried to abstain, set limits and made promises to yourself and others.

When life overwhelms, that drink or hit can seem like a best friend, soothing our anxieties and fears with comforting numbness. Apart from the physical dependence and withdrawal, overcoming addiction means allowing neglected, buried and ignored emotions to come flooding back all at once.

How I Will Work with You

My approach to treating addiction and takes an outside-in and inside-out approach. By outside-in, I mean addressing behavioral and environmental factors. This might mean removing all alcohol and drugs from their hiding places, and surrounding yourself with a supportive sober community.

By inside-out, we will process the deep wounds that made you want to find that comforting numbing agent to begin with.

Using a narrative approach, we will work together to identify those unique exceptions in which you chose not to use, maintained commitments or lived consistently with your values in spite of the hold of a villain named Addiction.

My Experience and Training

I have extensive training working with clients who have allowed Addiction to control their lives. My clinical training began as a counselor at a methadone clinic in downtown Los Angeles, and continued as an intern at an inpatient drug and alcohol treatment center. From what I have learned working with people in recovery is that the “gateway” isn’t your first recreational puff of weed; it’s the experience of abuse, trauma or alienation that left behind a deep, painful wound that was never allowed to heal. My approach is nonjudgmental, encouraging and patient. I don’t believe in powerlessness. I believe we all have the strength to change.

Recovery from Addiction: Welcome
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