sober holidays

Beating the Christmas Blues

Additionally, as addicts and alcoholics, we tend to bear somewhat tortured pasts – very few of us cling to nothing but happy memories of the holiday season. Perhaps this time of year conjures memories of holidays we previously ruined while heavily intoxicated. Perhaps our family is still estranged, or we are tormented by fond recollections…

emdr therapy

What is EMDR Therapy?

Eye Movement Desensitization and Reprocessing Therapy (commonly referred to as EMDR), is an integrative and comprehensively researched psychotherapy approach that has proven highly effective in the treatment of trauma. EMDR combines a wide variety of established therapeutic methods, and follows a specific set of protocols that have, to date, helped millions of men and women…

resentment next chapter

Resentment – The Number One Offender

Back at the end of my drinking days, I had very few people left to talk to. Part of the reason was because I had deeply wronged so many of my friends and loved ones, and they surely knew that they were safer in simply staying away. Part of the reason was because my favorite…

holistic mindfulness meditation

Mindfulness Meditation and ‘Wanting’

When we first sober up (in inpatient treatment), we take a clinical look at the underlying causes and contributing factors. We learn about the disease model of addiction, about how our upbringing and early childhood experiences shaped the way we feel and function. We learn about unresolved trauma, and discover that failing to heal the…

practice gratitude

Gratitude – A Personal Practice

grat-i-tude (noun) the quality of being thankful; readiness to show appreciation for and return kindness. As addicts and alcoholics, the concept of gratitude likely eluded us entirely for the majority of our lives. We lived in a constant state of selfishness and self-pity, endlessly wondering why we had been dealt such a crappy hand; focused…

men relationships trauma

Men, Marriage, and Childhood Trauma

In the current day and age, a whopping 7 out of every 10 marriages end in divorce, separation, or extreme dysfunction. While the U.S. Census Bureau found that divorce rates in most age groups have been steadily decreasing since the mid 1990s, divorce rates are still exceedingly high – much higher than they are in…

trauma recovery

3 Stages of Trauma Recovery

Judith Lewis Herman, a psychiatrist, teacher, researcher, and prolific author, dedicated her life to closely studying the impact of trauma on traumatic stress on the human psyche. She is currently a professor of clinical psychiatry at Harvard University Medical School, and a founding member of the Women’s Mental Health Collective. She is well-known for the…

Man suffering from Sexual Trauma

Men and Sexual Trauma

Experiences that young men undergo will echo the way they function in adult relationships – especially if experiences were sexually abusive or unsolicited. It is important to keep in mind that this statement extends far beyond sexual relationships, and into relationships with family members, friends, coworkers, and employers. Early sexual abuse typically results in long-term…

boredom addiction recovery

Boredom in Addiction Recovery

For the addict and alcoholic, few things and life are as unbearable as the thought of being bored. Boredom can be emotionally uncomfortable, especially in early recovery. We like to keep ourselves occupied in order to prevent our racing thoughts and irrational inspirations from consuming us whole. When we fall victim to boredom, we are…

addiction and mental health

Addiction and Mental Health

A fair amount of individuals who are afflicted with substance abuse disorders simultaneously suffer from other mental health disorders – most commonly, anxiety and depression. Some individuals will eventually develop mental disorders as a result of their incessant chemical abuse, while others will turn to alcohol and drugs as a means of self-medicating untreated symptoms…