Beware of a Snow Day

Dealing with a destructive relationship to substances…and doing the huge work of changing that relationship… is a process of mastery. It requires focus, intensity, perseverance, commitment, and courage. It requires getting a deeper understanding of yourself, taking the plunge into some not so happy places of self-reflection, and bringing what you find down in those […]

A Shift in Understanding Can Someone Change

Having a family member struggle with substances can be physically draining, emotionally exhausting and downright confusing. It can kick up a bunch of emotions that can be really crushing: shame, guilt, anger, betrayal, and the desire to isolate away from it all. Many family members can fall into quite a deep hole as they struggle […]

Drug Addicts Simple Can’t be Trusted?

We are quite sure you have heard the phrase “drug addicts can’t be trusted” in the media, from someone you know as they talk about someone with a substance use problem, or maybe even your doctor or a treatment professional. Have you ever paused to consider the impact uttering that phrase could have on someone […]

Why Am I Doing This Again?

This is for everyone who has started down a new path toward a healthier weight, better conditioning, less procrastination, regular flossing, less alcohol, or no more cocaine (and all the other things you may want to change). You have the goal in your sites, and you’re ready to go! If it were only so easy. […]

How to Help: A New Perspective

If you are someone who loves someone misusing substances, it is likely that you want to help and want things to change. It’s also likely that you feel either incredibly overwhelmed or confused with where to start and what to do. Luckily there are lots of things you can do! And research has shown time […]

Thank You Parent Support Network!

Surveys of adolescents (12 to 17) and young adults (18 to 25) suggest that 10 % to 15% of adolescents and 30% to 35% of young adults report using illicit drugs in the past year. When you factor in alcohol use the percentages significantly increase (20% of adolescents and 72% of young adults report drinking […]

Parents Helping Parents – A Road Less Travelled

As a clinician working with the families who have a child using substances, I get a lot of questions about a lot of things…“should we send her away”? “what is the MATTER with him”? “what did we do wrong”?. The most painful one, which is often unspoken, is…”Do you really get how brutally scary and […]

How To Avoid Conversation Traps

If you are someone who would like to help a loved one change their relationship with substances or to make any behavioral change, there are four essential tools you can learn. First, Helping through Understanding or thinking about issues of addiction differently using the science we now have available. Second, Helping by Taking Care of Yourself […]

Increasing Positive Support with Relationship FIT-ness

Relationships matter. A lot! “Ugh, every time I see my brother, I feel so stressed/undervalued/ mad/ alone  (and want to go get a drink)!”  Sound familiar?  Substitute mother/father/classmate/ boss/friend and we are certain that you have significant people in your life with whom your relationship could be described as “difficult.”  Then, there are those people […]