‘Community Recovery’ by Bill White

Wellbriety Movement 2Another excellent paper by Arthur Evans, Roland Lamb and Bill White, highlighted in the latter’s recent blog.

“In the Red Road to Wellbriety, the individual, family and community are not separate; they are one.  To injure one is to injure all; to heal one is to heal all.” The Red Road to Wellbriety, 2002
As a field, we have long known that the effects of personal addiction ripple through families, social networks and organizations.  But might whole communities and whole cultures be so wounded by prolonged alcohol and other drug problems that they are themselves in need of a sustained recovery process?  This suggestion is the premise of a new paper co-authored by Dr. Arthur Evans, Jr., Roland Lamb and myself just published in Alcoholism Treatment Quarterly.

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‘The Passing of a Pioneer’ by Bill White

“That’s the issue [recovery]: it is not about any of us. It is to keep our eye on the prize, which is what drove most of us into this field in the first place. And that prize is the person who’s in recovery and seeing them grow.” 

David Powell 3Here is a touching obituary of a special person in the recovery field, David Powell PhD. Bill White talks about David’s contribution and highlights his passion, drive and dedication. He also touches upon the pressing issue of finding new  passionate leaders in the recovery field.

‘David Powell, PhD, who recently assumed the position of Assistant Clinical Professor within the Department of Psychiatry at Yale University School of Medicine, is not a person who needs introduction to an audience of addiction professionals and recovery advocates, but some readers may not yet know that David died in a fall at his home on November 1, 2013.

David was ever-present within the addictions field for more than four decades.  His work addressed many frontier issues within the field, but he is probably best known for his pioneering work to enhance the quality of clinical supervision in addiction treatment.  He pushed this agenda through his numerous publications, frenetic presentation schedule and through consultations with leading addiction treatment organizations. 

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Most Viewed Content on Recovery Stories: The Top Five

And so here we are, the top five viewed content!

rsz_pic00016_35. Mark Williams on Mindfulness Based Cognitive Therapy (blog from August 28th). Professor Mark Williams of the University of Oxford talks about mindfulness meditation as an alternative treatment for depression. Mindfulness is also a powerful tool to help someone recovering from addiction.

4. The challenges of recovering from heroin addiction is a short article I wrote summarising the research of Patrick Biernacki, who interviewed 100 people who had overcome heroin addiction without treatment. You can also read a longer article about the research on this website.

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Bill White on Stigma and the New Recovery Movement

UnknownHere is a really powerful film clip from Bill White. Please pass the link on.

“Almost everyone in America know someone in recovery. The problem historically is that they did not know they were in recovery which means that they can continue to maintain incredible stereotypes about who are the people who develop alcohol and other drug problems in this country and who are the people who recover and don’t recover.

There are a lot of issues about stigma that I cannot educate you out of. I cam give you all the facts. I can read all the books to you. I can show you documentaries but nothing is going to change that embedded prejudice until you encounter personally someone in recovery who means something to you and hear their story.”

‘Recovery Stories from the 19th Century’ by Bill White

IntemperateCover (3)Here is a fascinating addition to Bill White’s website, a series of Recovery Stories from the 19th and beginning of the 20th century.

‘In the minds of the public and many helping professionals, the history of addiction recovery in the United States begins with the founding of Alcoholics Anonymous in the mid-1930s. 

That view, of course, obscures the long history of pre-AA recovery mutual aid. That earlier history spans the eighteenth century rise of abstinence-based religious and cultural revitalization movements (recovery circles) within Native American tribes and nineteenth century groups such as the Washingtonians, recovery-focused fraternal temperance societies, the Ribbon Reform Clubs and recovery support groups associated with early addiction treatment programs (the Ollapod Club, Godwin Association, Keeley Leagues).

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‘Helping Yourself to Recovery’ by Bill White

Helping Others ImageHelping others has been an integral part of the folk wisdom about addiction recovery for more than 250 years. 

From early Native American recovery circles, early Euro-American recovery mutual aid societies and the 20th century advent of 12-Step recovery through the ever-widening menu of religious, spiritual and secular recovery pathways, the message has been clear:  help yourself by helping others. 

The helping prescription is based on two core ideas.  The first is the concept of wounded healer – the notion that people who have experienced and survived an illness or great trauma may have acquired unique perspectives that allow them to offer assistance to others in similar circumstances. 

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