Addicts Counsel Addicts Better-Part 2
Part 1 offended. Part 2 might offend. You have your PHD? Good on you. You have a specialty to specifically treat addictive tendencies? Kudos. But, something better than the book-knowledge comes from working for the betterment of the masses and being PART of the masses.
My residential facility (rehab) was not a posh place. I was so strung out that I drunkenly looked at pictures online and picked the closest and best looking one within a 60 mile radius. There were a lot of different people from a lot of different walks of life there. Some were young adults that came from wealthy families, some homeless people, some government employees, and some that were court ordered due to criminal activities-some scary shit. Addiction doesn't discriminate. I hold hands with every one of these lovely women. We weren't on vacation together, though.
One night, we went off campus to an AA meeting. A drunk lady attending misplaced her cell phone and claimed someone from our residential facility stole it. This girl was wigged out of her mind. In the case of paraphernalia being suspected in the facility, we get searched. It is reasonable...for drugs. This was a cell-phone. We were taken into a room one-by-one and asked to get naked. As I was taking my clothes off, I said, "You know this is not appropriate." She said nothing. I don't know if she couldn't or if she just didn't agree. She got paid.
Later that evening, we were talking about it as a group. Another paid counselor came in and said, "it is our right to search you at any time." There was no, "I'm sorry." There was no empathy. I simply raised my hand, and said, "We trusted you with that right and it was not appropriate in this circumstance." Were we traumatized? No. We had trouble keeping clothes on one of the girls. No one was shy. But, what did it do to us as a community? Our trust was violated. We lost connection to those helping us. There was no trust left for the leaders of this facility. They were just making money off of us.
Genuine trust. That is why addicts counseling addicts work. Trust comes from being a part of a community. Values are actively managed, not enforced with a strong arm. It is the only way that each individual in a system will work toward a common goal. You have to feel like you are a part of the recovery. Trust is why addicts helping addicts is better. It is not about the bottom line. It is not about the money you can make from helping others. It is about the common goal of helping each other recover.
oh yeah, the cell phone was in the drunk lady's car.