“There is one commonality within every case of an individual getting sober, and that is desperation. I wish desperation upon any individual struggling with alcoholism or addiction.”
– Aaron Postil, Founder & CEO, Brass Tacks Recovery
Last month we explored the principle of honesty. How do you think honesty relates to the principle of hope?
Angela: When an individual is hoping for something, what they’re generally hoping for is a change. They’re hoping for a shift in a situation or circumstance so that it aligns with a desire they hold. I think that having a light shining on the end goal of what you want.. that is hope. However, without the honesty to accept the reality of where one stands in relationship to those desires, dreams, and goals, that hope is futile.
Do you think hope is necessary for an individual to become sober?
Aaron: When an individual is in the intervention stage of recovery, he or she likely feels very little hope. That’s why the intervention is necessary. At that stage, hope is projected onto the individual by their family and loved ones. Often times, the feeling of hope begins when the individual is in recovery and finds a support system. In my case, I began feeling hopeful in treatment when I met others who had more time sober than I did. Meeting those individuals gave me the hope that I could have the same.
What do you think it takes for someone struggling with alcoholism or addiction to find hope?
Aaron: I think it takes a moment of clarity to find hope, and I think that a moment of clarity requires desperation. Within every case of an individual getting sober, there is one constant, and that is desperation. I wish that sense of urgency on any individual struggling with alcoholism or addiction, because often that desperation is followed by a willingness to change. Sometimes the pressure to make that change is created simply, and other times, it’s tragically. My desperation was created with an intervention. My moment of clarity came when I realized that if I didn’t get help, I would lose my family. I was desperate for that not to happen, so I agreed to go to a treatment center. Then came the hope. I will say that when an individual finds their moment of clarity, it is imperative that he or she immediately seek treatment. Otherwise, the clarity is likely to pass.
Why do you think hope is critical to long-term recovery?
Angela: In a world that’s filled with much confusion, and where so many things don’t make sense, I think the only way we can get anywhere, really, is with hope. However, that hope without action is just a thought. Hope is how we navigate through uncertainty. I think hope is the first step towards long-term recovery, but merely hope by itself is not enough. As we speak about hope, I can’t help but lean into faith. I think hope is the dream, and faith is the belief that a real change can occur. Everything in recovery is about the journey home to oneself; in life so often we are focused on what we want to do, and recovery is about who we can be. Even the word ‘recovery’ is about the act of recover-ING something. It’s about recovering the unlimited potential of who you can be in this lifetime. That process begins with hope.
Why do you think support systems are so effective at helping individuals in recovery find hope?
Aaron: Support systems give you something to aim for. Whether you’re one day sober or seven years sober, spending time with people who have more time than yourself gives you hope. Realizing that those individuals have been through so much, and that they’ve done it sober, makes you realize it’s possible for you to achieve the same. When you’re newly sober, the feeling of hope when you find a support group is indescribable. Surrounding yourself with people who are living fulfilling lives, free of drugs and alcohol, brings hope. After all, getting sober is about much more than just ceasing the use of drugs and alcohol. It’s about finding happiness and maintaining hope; and that is something that’s much more likely to happen if you have a support group.
How do support systems help parents and families find hope?
Angela: Support groups reduce stigma. I think that one of the biggest fallacies we have as humans is that what we’re experiencing is unique. A support system minimizes the shame and normalizes the situation. What this means, simply spoken, is that I get to sit in a room with somebody else who understands how I feel, and is either experiencing what I’m going through as well, or already has. That connection is the beginning of a solution. So often, families cannot get to the solution phase of recovery because they’re blinded by the shame of feeling inadequate as a parent. A support group is how many parents can finally take a deep breath and realize that they’re not alone in this – there are other parents who love their children and did they best they could, and those families were still faced with addiction. There is a relief in this realization; and in that relief is a surrender, and from that surrender comes a start.
Brass Tacks Recovery believes that any family can heal when they have faith in our professional guidelines, suggestions and boundaries that our experience has proven effective. Let us help your family. Please call (888) 277-8225. There is hope.
CADC-II, IS, ICADC, CPC, NCAC-I | Founder & CEO
“Before focusing my professional skills and experience on families dealing with addiction recovery and treatment, I spent 15 years in the music industry managing and traveling with high profile clients such as Guns & Roses, Aly & AJ, Candlebox, Goldfinger, Van Halen, and Greenday. During this time my social use of alcohol and drugs gradually progressed and became a problem. Thankfully, my family intervened and we made the decision that I would enter a residential treatment program. As part of the intervention process, my family and I realized that their love for me resulted in behaviors that unknowingly created an unhealthy and enabling dynamic. At the request of my interventionist, my family sought professional support as well. Through this process they learned how their behaviors related to my challenges could positively and negatively affect our family system as a whole.”
Certified Professional Coach | Founder & COO
“I believe one of the most painful experiences a family member can have is watching a loved one struggle with alcoholism or addiction. The fear, worry, and concern the family faces during this time can be debilitating.
I bring to Brass Tacks Recovery a rare skill set, which combines personal experience and comprehension of both internal and external professional synergy. As a Certified Professional Coach with a background in the eating disorder and substance use fields, I bring trauma informed education and empathy to clients and families. I am a member of the board of directors of Women’s Association for Addiction Treatment (WAAT), and have held board positions within various chapters of the Los Angeles International Association of Eating Disorders (iaedpLA). In 2016 I graduated from Antioch University with a BA in psychology.”