During their ugliest, most severe, and worst stage of their addiction, the start of their recovery is invisible to everyone else. The nascent recovery within them (perhaps nothing more than a simple moment of clarity) seems to have its own voice and is already speaking to them. Later, that suffering person speaks to others about … Continue reading Recovery Orphans
I've been involved in some recent discussions about addiction as a disease and the role of experiences like trauma. A few years ago I had the pleasure of seeing Dr. Jehannine Austin discuss how she approaches genetic counseling around psychiatric disorders and addiction. She doesn't answer all the questions around the etiology of addiction (who … Continue reading Is addiction caused by genetic or environmental factors?
Background: History is incredibly important to how we understand ourselves, where we came from, where we stand now and to assist us in determining our pathways forward. Few things are more important to me than understanding the New Recovery Advocacy Movement and to support efforts to move us towards an expanded recovery community across America. … Continue reading Reflections on the historic 2001 Recovery Summit in St. Paul, Minnesota, and the start of the New Recovery Advocacy Movement Article One – The Thoughts of Recovery Historian Bill White
I've been watching a really interesting twitter discussion about the conceptual boundaries of recovery. One branch of the discussion got into recovery as a process and as an outcome. It reminded me of this post from 2019. Yesterday, we began to revisit the concept of recovery-oriented harm reduction. Why recovery-oriented harm reduction and not just … Continue reading Revisiting recovery-oriented harm reduction (part 2)
We should fight to ensure our patients and this field does not accept anything less than flourishing – that should be the goal we bring to our work in research and clinical practice.Eric Strain I grew up in Glasgow, a city whose motto, as every schoolchild was taught, is ‘Let Glasgow flourish’. I think primary … Continue reading Treatment: nothing less than flourishing!
I appreciate the reflections in Dr. Jana Burson's most recent blog post. In particular, the following caught my attention: "I hear abstinence-only proponents criticize medications for opioid use disorder, and I think to myself, 'If you only knew how much some people benefit from methadone/buprenorphine, you would change your mind.' When I hear people who … Continue reading Janaburson’s Blog
Science evolves through collaboration, debates, support, and refutations between scientists. This fact is no less true in the science of recovery. Recent discussions regarding new boundaries in the definition of "recovery" illuminate the mechanics of what scientists, clinicians, and people in recovery feel are essential characteristics of recovery. As one of the authors regarding the … Continue reading Reflections on Current Debates Regarding Recovery Definitions
We only keep what we have by giving it away. Altruism helps the giver. It's at the heart of mutual aid and lived experience recovery organisations. This study from a few years back explores some of the issues in family recovery groups. The researchers in this Finnish research looked at communication and support in Al-Anon … Continue reading Altruism: balm for stigma, boon for recovery
In their 2020 Commentary published in The Journal of Addiction Medicine (a journal of the American Society of Addiction Medicine aka ASAM), Kelly and Bergman state that: “Individuals with regular and increasing very heavy alcohol consumption cannot be considered as maintaining ‘recovery’ due to toxicity and intoxication-related risks”. Why did they publish a commentary about … Continue reading Continuing “Very Heavy Drinking” and Also Meeting An Improved Definition of Recovery?
Those who cannot remember the past are condemned to repeat it.” – George Santayana The other day I was on a zoom call and I could see a poster of local recovery history behind one of the persons I was talking to. I asked about it, and he told me he had stumbled on the … Continue reading A System that Fails to Retain its History or Prepare for the Future