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Old 03-10-2011, 09:12 AM   #1 (permalink)
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inpatient treatment or outpatient... or just a counselor?


I am extremely new to "recovery." I haven't had any help with it yet. Soberrecovery.com has been my only support. Saturday (3/5) was the last time that I had a drink. Though I am not craving any alcohol currently, (which is a huge surprise,) I still think having some help would, well, help.
There are tons of AA meetings in my area that I am more than willing to go to just to listen but am not sure that will suffice.
There is an inpatient treatment program pretty close to my area that isn't TOO expensive. That treatment program would hold me in for 28 days. There are counselors around that could help on a weekly basis. I am not sure where to start...
The treatment program that I found, I found through a friend that went and is now close to 3 whole years sober. It works for some people, obviously. Let me know what you think...
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Old 03-10-2011, 09:27 AM   #2 (permalink)
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I don't know about everyone else here, but if I was able to afford a good treatment program I would go. You've got nothing to lose. They'll probably help you bring some more clarity to your plan to stay sober.
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Old 03-10-2011, 09:36 AM   #3 (permalink)
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I definitely agree with bevin...what do you have to lose? I'd go in a heartbeat if I wasn't worried about losing my job and the financial difficulties it would create. Being in an inpatient facility would allow you to focus entirely on your recovery. Best of luck to you on whatever path you decide to take!
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Old 03-11-2011, 10:35 AM   #4 (permalink)
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I actually did two approaches which were invaluable. I went to an inpatient center down in Wilmington for 28 days then I continued with intensive outpatient at UNC-CH for a couple of months.

I honestly did relapse at 4 months...but it was not because of the care I received. It was because I was close-minded, did not find a sponsor or have a willingness to work my program as the centers recommended. On the flip side I do not think I would be at 15 months now without the detox, the education, and the seeds that were planted in treatment. I know I would not be at 15 months were it not for the twelve steps, my sponsor, my higher power and the strength of the people in the meetings I go to.

Congrats on your decision. I see you are in NC (don't know where) but if I can be of any help please feel free to reach out....
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Old 03-11-2011, 10:51 AM   #5 (permalink)
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I find my weekly counseling sessions to be of great help. I am truly blessed with a terrific counselor. I like the 'one on one' aspect of it too.
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Old 03-11-2011, 10:59 AM   #6 (permalink)
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I agree that a lot of people find counselling helps a lot. I think it's very important to find someone who you can work with, and especially someone who understands addiction.

I hope you keep visiting SR because there is always support here.
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Old 03-11-2011, 11:30 AM   #7 (permalink)
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I absolutely agree with Bevin. I'm currently doing an outpatient program but, if I'd been able to swing it, I'd have definitely considered inpatient. It's the most intensive way to begin your sobriety.
That being said, you need to really look at what you want and need. Having not been down this road before, I'm sure that's hard to gauge. I suggest you begin with an evaluation at a treatment center. They'll be able to help you navigate all of your options.
In the meantime, check out AA. It certainly won't hurt! Sit back and listen. If you want to talk, you'll have willing listeners. And you'll find others who've gone the IP or OP treatment route who can share their stories and experiences.
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Old 03-11-2011, 11:49 AM   #8 (permalink)
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I had gotten in touch with a counseling service and thought I'd just have a counselor...to my surprise it is a whole rehab counseling program thang and they evaluate you then if you qualify they put you in a 6 week out patient program. I love it...I base 3 nights a week on getting ready to go. I'm up to date on my studies and feel so much better.
I could do an in patient if I chose to but I like being home. My doggies need me.
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Old 03-11-2011, 04:00 PM   #9 (permalink)
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I think counseling is fine, if you want it and think it would help. Personally, though, I can't imagine anything more helpful than being with others who have been EXACTLY where you are, and have a common solution to living sober.
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Old 03-11-2011, 04:25 PM   #10 (permalink)
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I have no experience to share ...other than I went to AA
and have found all sorts of unexpected benefits.

Why not try a few AA meetings then decide if you need
aditional resources?

All my best...
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Old 03-11-2011, 05:53 PM   #11 (permalink)
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I took an "all of the above" approach, mostly because we had great insurance. Low bottom alcoholic here - lots of self neglect, and spent a decade trying to drink myself to death in isolation from the world.

I'm not saying you can't get sober without inpatient, after all people do it every day, but it certainly gave me a head start. First of all, check out the rehab carefully in advance. We selected one that uses a "reality based" treatment plan - you cook, clean, make your own bed, etc. We also had 66 hours of group counseling a week, an hour of Big Book daily, individual counseling once a week and an AA or NA meeting daily.


Upside: Lots of focus, fellowship and community with others going through the same thing, removed from environment in which I drank, safe, 30+ days sober when I checked out (6 days in detox before admission) and a third of the way to 90/90. A LOT of education about the disease and shiny new coping skills to go along with my shiny new sobriety.

Downside: Missed my home and family desperately. Fellowship and community with others going through the same thing - and who are all addicts and alcoholics who won't stop already with the war stories and drunkalogues! Also, there were instances of using and drinking while I was there - after all, an alcoholic/addict will find a way - and some were court ordered or there at the insistence of their family, so not so motivated. Immersion in the material almost to the point of drowning.

Long story short, when it was time to leave residential, it was almost past time to leave residential! I got a bit fed up with it, and was ready to get into the rooms and find the sober people, so I could do what they were doing. I wanted to be close to those who had some sober time under their belts whose sobriety was not so fragile. I didn't want to go down with the ship, so I distanced myself a bit from some people I care about very much as a matter of survival. Several cases of relapse I have heard about through the grapevine since - very sad.

I went from there to an IOP program, three nights a week, three hours a night and an hour a week with a therapist. Great reinforcement for what I learned in residential, and a different type of crowd. Higher bottoms, generally. I have four more nights of IOP to complete, then I am with a therapist once a week.

Still attending an AA meeting a day. 72 days sober, so it worked for me so far. Feeling great, cravings manageable, very little desire to drink (the monster is so quiet, I hate to mention it, but must), and I feel happy and free.

Good luck and best of everything, whatever you decide to do.
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Old 03-11-2011, 05:55 PM   #12 (permalink)
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Oh, and it also gave my loved ones some time and distance to heal and gain some clarity in the situation. I kept things pretty screwed up when I was drinking.
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