I believe that no matter where you come from or how far down alcoholism, addiction, or mental health has taken you and your family, that change is possible.
Growing up as an only child in a family of alcoholics, I was not given the tools for living, and existed mostly on my instincts to survive. Just as my own dysfunctional behaviors began to progress, both my parents sought help for their alcoholism in 12 Step recovery. I watched them get better. But it was my disease that would now progress.
I now understand that mental health and addictive behaviors can be generational and passed down inadvertently. I was raised in an environment that left me little chance of making it out without unhealthy coping skills. Through my own personal work, I have come to understand my role in the system, and my worth in recovery.
My high school years were spent experimenting with drugs and alcohol, losing any focus on what had been important to me. I spent a lot of time trying to be there for others, offering advice and help, when it was actually me that needed both. My concern for other people has always outweighed the concern for myself.
My college years were spent in more experimentation, with little attention to academics, and no direction. It was in college that I hit my first “bottom,” and began to seek help within the rooms of 12-Step programs, peer support, and therapy, yet my youthful arrogance would not allow me the ability to grasp what recovery has to offer.
Both my family and friends continued to offer their love and support as my addictions took me to depths I could never have imagined, yet it was not until I reached a point of surrender that I could receive their help. I was fortunate that I knew where to go, and that the people in the rooms of 12-Step programs were there to help me. It was there, too, that I learned that helping others is where I experience the most joy and fulfillment in my own recovery.
I am now currently in school obtaining my substance abuse counseling certification. Coming to Brass Tacks Recovery has provided me an opportunity to share my own experiences with others in hopes that they too can find a new freedom from dysfunctional behaviors, unhealthy coping tools, drugs and alcohol, or untreated mental health.
What I did not understand when I got here, was how much working with the families of our clients can affect change. By helping families to find trustworthy resources for their loved ones, our team works to better ensure that the needs of both the family and their loved one are met.