By extension, (women’s) recovery success will positively affect communities’ (and the nation’s) health and economy.
The numbers are in, and it's not pretty.
The latest research conducted by Alexandre B. Laudet, PhD and international recognized expert in addiction recovery compared male and female experiences in recovery.
Latest research confirms that the primary issues for men in recovery are largely financial (owing back taxes) and legal (arrests, incarceration or DUI.)
Women are more affected in family and health during active addiction. Twice as many lost custody of a child, or are victims of domestic violence. They spend more time at the doctor, ER, and treatment of chronic conditions along with a higher incidence of untreated mental health problems.
Why should I care?
Because I am a woman whose first response to stress has been to self-medicate. And who has watched many women I love suffer debilitating diseases compounded by the stress of living with an addict, or numbing their own pain with whatever worked.
Because I am a mother who worked hard to break the cycle of addiction for my own children. Because I am a grandmother who is more invested than ever in stopping the cycle of addiction before it touches future generations.
Because it takes one to know one.
If you are a woman, or know one, who manages stress with food, drink, smoking, prescription medication, gambling, or inappropriate sexual focus, give them my number or send them to my site. 9 out of 10 women who need help will not seek out a professional. Coaching may be the answer.
I want to thank all of you who have purchased the book, came to hear me speak, or shared it with friends and family. I hope it has brought hope and healing to your lives.
I have completed the quasi-study on this blog and it will remain so that anyone who picks up the book and wants to go it alone can come here anonymously and dig a little deeper with us.
I am available for interviews, speaking engagements, workshops and retreats. Call 509-593-4989 for details.
I heard someone this month tell the story of asking for a ride to the airport. His friend said, "I'll try to get you there in time." Our traveler decided he better just call a cab because trying is lying.
How often have I used that excuse myself?
"I'll try to make it" when, in fact, I didn't want to go but couldn't find the courage to just say no.
"I'll try to stick to this diet through the holidays."
"I'll try to quit (fill in the blank)"
"I'll try to pay off debt."
What's lacking from that phrase is the big C. Commitment. The impetus to do whatever it takes, rather than what's merely convenient.
Change happens when the pain of where you are is greater than the fear of where you're going.
On a scale of 1-10, what's your pain level today?
First, let me say that I unabashedly love the 12-step program of recovery as outlined in the first 103 pages of the book "Alcoholics Anonymous."
The trouble with 12-step today is that most people who go to meetings don't follow the program as it was originally written. In fact, many rely on the strength of slogans and social meetings to keep them sober, or to excuse slips and relapses.
By a show of hands, you will see that most of them have never even read the book they carry to meetings each week.
In fact, there is a parallel between that behavior and what occurs in many churches. Show up once a week, book in hand, look like you're living the life, then do whatever you want the rest of the time.
Do you know anybody like that? We're going to talk about it here, and start a series called:
Big Book: Back to Basics.
We all carry memories of things done to us or someone we love. Things that were mean, or unfair, or hurtful, or damaging in some way.
When we carry that memory along with a demand for justice, we carry the pain with us. Every time we bring it up, we re-feel the trauma. Every time we talk about it, we justify our anger and cement the emotion in our body.
What we complain about, controls us.
We have all heard the adage, "forgive and forget" but I suggest you take that a step further. Remember, and forgive anyway.
Forgiveness doesn't erase the damage done, nor let the perpetrator off the hook. It does, however, allow you to see the damages for what they are (as well as the interest accrued in your body from years of stewing about it.)
Then you can get busy with repairs, and fly free into the rest of your amazing life!
So how do we do that? In stages. Writing about it would look like this:
Kim Halsey is a human resource professional and executive coach who helps people overcome life damaging habits, restore important relationships, and live their dreams without drama.
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