Reliance on substances (alcohol, drugs, shopping, pornography, people, etc.) may feel helpful in the moment but could be leading to a plethora of problems. As a substance abuse counselor, I provide clients a safe space to start exploring their relationship with substances while working toward a life of freedom.
ARE THOSE AROUND YOU NOTICING A CHANGE? ARE YOU NOTICING AN INCREASED RELIANCE ON SUBSTANCES OR ALCOHOL TO FUNCTION? DO YOU WANT TO FEEL FREEDOM FROM SUBSTANCES OR ALCOHOL? MAYBE YOU NOTICE A RELIANCE ON A CERTAIN BEHAVIOR?
Substance abuse is all encompassing. This doesn't mean having too many drinks one night after happy hour or binge watching Netflix one Saturday. Substance abuse impacts one's ability to perform at work, to connect socially and even to manage finances. Furthermore, dependence may be impacting ones personality, mood and motivation level. Substance abuse can include but is not limited to:
And while marijuana isn't technically consider addictive, there is research stating marijuana dependence is a real thing.
There are a variety of reasons to seek out a substance abuse counselor. The goal of substance abuse counseling isn't always sobriety or abstinence. The goal may be to cut back, understand patterns and/or how using is impacting your life. I work with folks all the time who want to have a better relationship with themselves and usually that means reducing reliance on substances. Of course for some folks, sobriety or abstinence is the goal and we can find success in this. Here are some reasons to begin working with a substance abuse therapist:
The first step in healing substance abuse is utilizing therapy to recognize where you're at in terms of treatment. If individual therapy is determined to be the right level of care, having one on one support is an excellent way to work toward recovery.
Recognizing patterns in family, relationship with addictive behavior and triggers are just a few examples of topics addressed in therapy. Determining the stage of change in session will help both client and therapist work together at a feasible pace. One treatment modality I utilize is harm reduction. Harm reduction involves meeting the client where they're at and focusing on small steps to increase overall safety rather than quitting cold turkey (which I highly caution depending on the substance due to adverse effects)
Utilizing evidence based care in therapy is crucial. I strive to utilize the most up to date treatment approaches when helping clients work toward substance abuse recovery. Some of these modalities include:
Through a combination of pattern awareness, trigger recognition and a tailored list of coping tools to reduce addictive behavior, recovery is possible. It never ceases to amaze me the strength and power we have as individuals to not only make changes but maintain them.
Examples of work with clients include:
I have worked with folks struggling with substance abuse for over ten years. I understand the vulnerability, willpower and overall strength it takes to make a change. I know from experience with my own loved ones how challenging substance abuse is but also the the joy seeing and experiencing success. I've seen firsthand how working with a substance abuse counselor can make a difference. I'm here and ready to help you on your journey.