Tuesday, February 5, 2008

Email from a Treatment Professional

The head of a hospital-based treatment program where LifeRing meetings started last year sent this email to the LifeRing convenor who had asked to move the LifeRing meeting to a larger room on a different evening:

"All the newest scientific literature in recovery says "one size does not fit all - and should not" implying people should have choices that will keep them coming, as it is difficult to affect change when the patient does not attend. Historically, we have viewed resistance to 12-step programs as "denial". We are moving away from that dogmatic approach to substance abuse counseling. This is my long-winded way of attempting to say I no longer view LifeRing as "competition" to [12-step], especially given the extraordinary acceptance it has had among our IOP patients who would not have otherwise attended AA or NA.

Consequently, I suggest you move the meeting to whatever date and time you wish.... Given what we are learning about substance abuse treatment, disallowing to the change would not be in the best interest of the patients wishing to attend, and therefore hard to justify. ...

So, in summary, I say move the meeting on your own.... Again, congratulations on a very popular treatment alternative that has meant the difference between attending or not attending self-help groups for a large number of our patients."