In a Huffington Post blog titled, “Can We Please Stop Stigmatizing Addiction, Recovery and Lindsay Lohan?” Deni Carise, a scientist and clinician in the field of substance abuse recovery makes a case for why more than one stint in a drug and alcohol rehab center is not necessarily an indication of failure. She is honest about Lohan’s behavior, her image in the media, and why people are skeptical about Lohan’s chances for long-term success and adds,
“But, by definition, rehabilitation is the restoration of health and, contrary to popular belief, more stints in rehab actually predict treatment success, not treatment failure. This could be Lindsay’s time, her chance at recovery and lifelong change.”
Carise discusses why people are reluctant to be open and honest about being in recovery. Years ago, there would be doubt about someone’s character but now with a never-ending list of TV shows that seem to celebrate people who can’t quite get it together, it is probably even more difficult to be open about addiction recovery. Carise writes,
“Too often, people are reluctant to say they once had a problem with drugs and alcohol. Even though people in recovery are all around us, the public rarely gets to see those who are doing well. Chances are we all know someone in recovery in this day and age — your father, your brother, your cousin, your friend, maybe even you? — with wonderful and fulfilling lives.”
Part of what we do at Transitions Recovery Center is give patients the opportunity to interact (through structured activities) with those who have already graduated from our programs. Our Alumni Association offers meetings and events that include patients, staff, alumni, and members of the community. Even if the world at large does not celebrate the strength needed to admit and work through addiction, we do.
And this is a two-way street: current patients get to be inspired by graduates who are doing well and alumni have a chance to tell their stories and be reminded of all they have accomplished.