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-   -   "The Freedom Model for Addictions" by Slate and Scheeren (

Solarion 02-22-2018 08:26 PM

"The Freedom Model for Addictions" by Slate and Scheeren
This recent book has been helpful to me and I'd like to mention its availability in case it would help anyone else.

Rather than try to summarize the model and the background information and discussion that the authors provide, I should allow others to look it up if interested and determine for themselves whether it might be helpful to them.

mandypandy 02-23-2018 12:37 AM

I just looked on Amazon, it has very good reviews. I read anything like this. I also found William Porters book "Alcohol Explained" very illuminating.
Thanks for the recommendation :)

lessgravity 02-23-2018 07:45 AM

Originally Posted by mandypandy (Post 6797318)
I just looked on Amazon, it has very good reviews. I read anything like this. I also found William Porters book "Alcohol Explained" very illuminating.
Thanks for the recommendation :)

I also liked Porters' book.

Jason Vale's book is great as well.

Solarion 02-23-2018 05:02 PM

Thank you both. I appreciate your recommendations.

AlericB 02-25-2018 08:18 AM

Thanks for the recommendation. I found a good summary of the model here:

I'd describe it as a happiness based as well as freedom based approach. It seems to make a lot of sense.

Tatsy 02-25-2018 09:37 AM

Aleric , I downloaded the kindle sample and I agree, it makes sense. Sadly, I wish I’d read this book, rather than last century’s main book. Would’ve saved me much heartache and loss of years.

Edited to add, I also appreciated William Porter’s book. Although I stopped drinking forever, just short of one and a half years ago, I’m still fascinated by the ‘addiction’ and how I was ensured and then entrapped for so many years.......sombooks such as these, may save newbies from years of turmoil and stuckness!

AlericB 02-25-2018 09:50 AM

Well, you've benefitted lot of people here from your experience Tatsy, not that that justifies your heartache of course. Our gain though!

andyh 02-25-2018 10:48 AM

interesting, thanks Solarion :)

Sohard 02-26-2018 03:59 PM

Gosh, I’m glad some liked it and got something from it. I just read it because I loved the guy’s ted talk. The book, though, I almost found a bit offensive. It was just a bit too much for me. I don’t think quitting an addiction (or behavior, or habit, or whatever you want to call it) is simply “easy”. Those neural pathways are firmly engrained, and while I agree it is easier and possible to quit once you understand what you are initially fighting against, having lost a dear loved one to smoking, I was just a bit turned off by how “easy” this author claims it is. My dad desperately tried quitting for over half his life until it killed him. Easy, this isn’t.

I love AVRT and I loved The Naked Mind, by Annie Grace. I just think this guys was a bit much.

But I’m happy he was a help to others.

AlericB 02-27-2018 01:49 AM


I'm sorry to hear about your losses.

My reading of the extract was that the authors use the word 'easy' because they see addiction as state of beliefs about addiction rather than something that kind of exists on it's own and has somehow 'got' you. I guess it is easier to escape from a mental prison than a real one but I agree with you, it's still not easy.

tursiops999 02-27-2018 10:04 PM

Thanks for the suggestion, Solarion. I read it this weekend and found it very interesting-- a very rational, clear look at research and real world experience of quitting. They definitely take the position that using and quitting are choices -- i.e. we're not powerless.

I like how they encourage people to "work the upside" -- to consider what are the benefits of quitting and reframe in terms of benefits, instead of quitting just to avoid costs and pain. It's about choosing happiness.

They leave the option of "moderation " on the table. My beast certainly liked that (it was reading along), but irrelevant for me. Not sure what to make of that without reading the research they cite. Off topic for SR anyway, I suppose.

Anyway, an interesting read -- thanks for raising the topic.

AlericB 02-28-2018 02:21 AM

Originally Posted by tursiops999 (Post 6803615)
I like how they encourage people to "work the upside" -- to consider what are the benefits of quitting and reframe in terms of benefits, instead of quitting just to avoid costs and pain. It's about choosing happiness.

I like that aspect too. Not referring to anything that, as you say, may be off topic, they say that this reassessment of the benefits of quitting as against those of continuing to drink actually reduces the desire to drink. If you analyse your options and come to see that you'd be happier quitting then you won't feel deprived of what you had previously thought was the only thing that could make you happy. Their claim is that you have a desire to drink only because you think that you will get significant benefits from it, that is you drink because you prefer to, and once you see abstinence as the more beneficial and preferred option your desire for drink will reduce. The benefits of benefits!

Gabe1980 02-28-2018 02:51 AM

Thank you for the tip. It's always good to read things from a new perspective. Much appreciated!

AlericB 03-01-2018 01:42 AM

Thought I'd share this link which I think gives a good overall introduction to the model: The Freedom Model Chapters and which may say something of use to some.

Wholesome 03-01-2018 03:33 AM

I have only read the summary Aleric provided and I agree with some of their points, like that fear based recovery methods often don't work, for example, the message of our way or jail, institutions or death. I also agree that so much of everything in life is about one's beliefs and the stories we tell ourselves. It was an internal and profound shift in my thinking that made quitting and staying quit possible for me. My personal belief is that moderation is not only not possible for me, it is also unwanted. I have had way too many positive changes, in every way that matters in my life, to ever go back to putting that poison into my body. Abstinence has become my personal truth, it's become a core value that I don't drink. I don't even think about it anymore either, it's just who I am now, and it's the best feeling of freedom ever. I also agree that I was always in control, I was never in denial, I always knew exactly what I was doing. I was compulsive and excessive about it, I was definitely conflicted about my alcohol use, but I was never powerless, even if at times I believed I was.

AlericB 03-01-2018 04:24 AM

I've only read the summaries too but I think what it's saying is that if you choose abstinence out of fear or obligation then you won't enjoy it because it's not really what you want to do and the choice won't last. It seems to offer a different way of approaching it is which is to ask "Will I be happier by quitting?". Then, if you're open when figuring this out and in coming to your decision, you'll see that it is your happier option.

This makes sense to me because if you're quitting for happiness you need to explore if you are happier making this change and, once you see that you are, then you will be happy in your new life. From you're above post, it seems to me you have done this exploration very well :)

Wholesome 03-01-2018 04:52 AM

Since addiction is not a disease, it can't be medically treated, and you can't recover from it.
This stuck out to me as well. They summary talks a lot about free will and choices. Getting high or drunk is a choice, as is choosing not to. Being ambivalent about using, or addicted, may feel like you have lost the power of choice, but that is an illusion.

I'm not convinced about quitting as a means to finding happiness. I'm going to assume that anyone seeking out information about how to quit drugs or alcohol is in an unhappy place over their use. It also leaves the door open to going back to using if the promise of happiness remains unfulfilled. Happiness is a moment, it's a feeling, I've been happily drunk and I've been happily sober. I think it's chasing rainbows to believe that abstinence is about happiness, life is life and it's got its ups and downs. Early abstinence is often not a happy time, it's uncomfortable and scary and unknown, there is likely a lot of cleaning up to do with relationships and employment and life skills. It takes time to settle in sobriety and for the body to heal.

Just my opinion though.....

AlericB 03-01-2018 05:05 AM

Of course that's a valid opinion. I would say that the act of quitting is stating a preference for your life which is that you want it to be a happier one. For myself, I would see absolutely no point in quitting if my life was no happier.

Making a preference is making a choice between two or more options. My preference for a happier life quitting is not about chasing rainbows. It is a wholly rational choice. I could quit because I'm told to or because I believe that it is the only option possible for me and do this with no analysis of whether it is really what I want. I can't see that that can in any way lead to happiness for me.

Of course life will never be happy all the time - that would be about rainbows and unicorns. But life can on the whole be happier and that would be something that I both want and expect through quitting.

dwtbd 03-01-2018 08:08 AM

Just barging in , didn't read the summaries /articles.

It may be that we need a new word , a new way to emphasize the past tense -ness of being quit, perhaps 'quat' :)
Quitting is such an inviting AV vocabulary choice.
Once you have decided to quit, once you quat, everything else is literally everything else. Permanent abstinence from alcohol use is achieved, the option no longer exists.
The set of 'everything else' will include within it the subset ' how being quit(quat) feels , beast activity,AV ect' but no subset that includes 'more drinks' , a happiness quotient can not be assigned to a non existent variable, happiness isn't a measure (read condition) of abstinence, abstinence is a stand alone quantity, its existence is binary , it either is or it isn't, permanent unconditional abstinence is achieved or it isn't. There really is no place for present participle usage when referring to quat.
AV demands quitting leads to happiness, ignorance( the verb) is bliss :), ambivalence toward quat happiness will set you free ie shut down AV centered on attainment or nonattainment of quat happiness .

Life happens , alcohol consumption is only a part of it because the AV says so, ignore It.

AlericB 03-01-2018 08:39 AM

That's quat a post dwtbd. I haven't quat got the time to give it the attention it deserves at the moment but I'll think over quat you've said!

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