Factors Facilitating Recovery: Self-Responsibility

In my last blog posting focused on factors that facilitate recovery, I discussed empowerment. This is a key factor, as it the person with the problem who does the work in recovery.

The flip side of the fact that ‘recovery is something done by the person with the substance use problem’, is that the person has to take charge of their own recovery. Although people generally need to be supported in their recovery, they can’t be care-taken or protected into recovery. Setting one’s own goals and pathways, taking one’s own risks, and learning one’s own lessons are essential parts of a recovery journey. No one else can do the work. Self-responsibility is therefore a key factor facilitating recovery.

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What Works in Treatment?: Tim’s Story

rsz_img_2891Here are Tim’s experiences of treatment. Well, actually two different forms of treatment, one which did not help and the other that helped Tim overcome his addiction to alcohol and opiates. Tim is a doctor and his Story is packed full of insights. Here, I’ll start with his moment of clarity.

‘The epiphany which did eventually provoke some help-seeking was relatively simple. I came down to the kitchen one morning feeling wretched and defeated. I opened the cupboard and reached up. With one hand I brought down the cornflakes and with the other the whisky bottle.

I flexed my elbows to bring the two closer to me and weighing them up in my hands I thought, “There’s something not right about this… there’s something very wrong with this picture.” The bit of me that wanted to drink finally began to yield to the bit that didn’t. Shortly after, I went so see my GP.

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