I have worked in the addiction field for over 17 years and have a great passion for the work. Watching people walk from hopelessness and despair into recovery is very rewarding. The field has grown tremendously during my career. We have come from very limited knowledge regarding what addiction actually means to having a robust literature and research base to draw from. Understanding the neuro-psychological basis of addiction has opened many doors over the years and has helped countless people enter into recovery with understand and self-forgiveness.
In my early career I thought that once people became sober many of their concurrent problems would disappear. I know today how naive that thinking was and how complex dealing with addiction really is. When we become addicted early in our lives we post pone other development sometimes until adulthood. This translates into behaviour that does not always make sense to the world around us. We are children in adult bodies trying to resolve wounded histories. In this process we are often re-creating post traumas and accumulating wreckage.
Dealing with addiction means rebuilding. This is a long process that takes commitment and often involves coordinating various forms of treatment practices. I approach addiction from a multifaceted and eclectic framework. This means that at the outset I do a thorough assessment that gathers information about family of origin, trauma, physical injuries, spiritual beliefs, education and career, mental health and relationship patterns. Therapy moves towards regaining relationships and replacing unhealthy belief systems with self empowerment and support structures. I incorporate group work, 12 Step support and coordinate care with other mental health professionals.
Therapy must be a safe place to uncover painful truths about ourselves and to begin navigating a new way of living in the world.