Saturday, December 29, 2007

Can I get better?

Does GA work?
Am I doomed??

Well…g.a.--- the people in my g.a. group say that working the gambler’s anonymous program is the only way to abstinence and recovery…and that even if one becomes abstinent (without g.a.) they are doomed to return to gambling.

For a while, I believed that..because the only people that I knew who were having any success at all were in the gambler’s anonymous program…

I’ve made quite a few friends on the internet who are finding success WITHOUT g.a.

I know many people who are not using g.a. who aren’t doing so well…BUT….I know a lot of people who DO attend G.A. and have been doing so for YEARS who aren’t doing so good either.

I read an interesting article yesterday…the title implies that it’s an essay on the power of language in recovery, but it’s really a lot more than that…

The author speaks of the ‘New Recovery Movement’ and how attitudes (and language) around recovery needs to be changed…and ALSO…talks about the need for addicts in recovery to speak out….to show that RECOVERY DOES WORK….it CAN and IS being done….to show ‘Living Proof’…

Also…he speaks of the many paths to recovery..

Snip from the essay:

1. Affiliated recovery is a phrase that depicts the traditional pathway of initiating and sustaining recovery within an organized recovery mutual aid society. Affiliated recovery would include those individuals who are recovering within the framework of AA/NA or in such 12-step alternatives as Secular Organization for Sobriety or LifeRing. The term would also apply to those individuals who are recovering via participation either in specialized addiction ministries or broader religious pathways of recovery in which addiction is framed as a sin and recovery is defined in terms of redemption and living within a sober, faith-based community.
2. Virtual recovery or cyber-recovery is a phrase that describes people who have initiated or sustained their recovery from addiction through internet discussion and support groups, without face-to-face contact with other people in recovery.
3. Disengaged recovery is a term that depicts people who initiated their recovery within a professionalized treatment context or a recovery mutual aid group, perhaps even sustained that recovery for an extended period of time within that professional or mutual aid structure, but then disengaged from active participation while continuing to maintain their sobriety and emotional health through other methods. Such eventual disengagement is anticipated and encouraged in some groups (e.g., Women for Sobriety). It also occurs in traditional Twelve Step recovery groups much more frequently than publicly acknowledged, but this style of recovery has not been “blessed” by the Twelve Step community.46

(46Given that open acknowledgment of this phenomenon is likely to stir controversy and powerful resistance in some circles, I will briefly elaborate. I believe that sustained participation in mutual aid groups is an essential sobriety maintenance function for many people, that such sustained participation is a framework for spiritual fulfillment and meaningful social fellowship for many people, and that the survival of mutual aid groups as viable organizations requires a cadre of leaders and elders committed to sustained involvement. This does not alter the fact that many people with severe and persistent alcohol and other drug problems can and do achieve sustained recovery without life-long participation in such groups. This is also a way of stating my belief that the impact of AA and NA on America’s alcohol- and other drug-related problems far exceeds the impact reflected in the number of active members at any point in time.)

4. Solo recovery is a term that describes people who recover from severe alcohol and other drug problems without the aid of either professionally-directed treatment or participation in recovery support groups. Terms such as maturing out, natural recovery, spontaneous remission, auto-remission, and untreated recovery have been used in the addiction research community to depict this phenomenon. The acknowledgment of solo recovery is an important step in celebrating the growing pluralism of the culture of recovery in the United States, but it is likely that this term will give way to other yet to be coined terms. The reason is that studies of natural recovery confirm that most people who recovery from addiction without the aid of treatment or support groups do so with significant family and social support for their personal recovery. One of the challenges of involving people in solo recovery in the New Recovery Advocacy Movement is that many such individuals shed alcohol and other drug problems without incorporating
addiction or recovery into their personal identity and story. It will require visible accounts of solo recovery for such individuals to self-identify themselves and consider participation in this movement.
5. Manual-guided recovery is a term reflecting a mid-point between affiliated and solo recovery. Here the individual seeks outside assistance in the form of a written manual that provides a highly proceduralized approach to altering his or her relationship with alcohol and other drugs without face-to-face contact with others in recovery. As more of these manuals move on to the Internet, the paths of virtual recovery and manual-guided recovery are likely to merge. There may be better words to depict the unspoken realities and diversities of these recovery pathways. As the diversity of recovery paths becomes more fully charted and culturally known, we will evolve new terms to depict this diversity at the same time the need for such designation will likely diminish. Once charted and known, what will become increasingly important to the New Recovery Advocacy Movement is that people ARE in recovery, not how that recovery was achieved or is being sustained.

You can read the full essay here:

Recovery DOES Work.
People DO get better.
You can too.
There is Hope.
Never stop trying to stop.

Find what works for you....
if it isn't working..

Change it.

Many of the great achievements of the world were accomplished by tired and discouraged men who kept on working.-- Author: Unknown

1 comment:

Anonymous said...

Hi I was just wondering if you could tell me the links to the virtal recovery online. I am a really bad gambler and I am trying to get help but can't really figure out just where to start and I thought maybe the online help group would be a place to start. Could you please email me back at thanks for your help.