Category: Uncategorized

What Is Outcomes Research?

I graduated from Snyder High School in Snyder, Texas, in 1996.  Not an enormous city by any means, but certainly a small town full of interesting characters, eccentric personalities, and more than a few real-life cowboys.  The biggest thing most of my peers wanted was to get out of there and to see the rest of the world. Some people left and made it big, some left only to decide they wanted to come back home, and some moved to a place not so distant from Snyder, but still not there. I realize this may seem a strange way to ... Read more

Instead of Partying This 4th of July, Try These Sober Celebrations

The upcoming 4th of July weekend presents unique challenges to everyone this year. With the need to maintain social distances, wear masks, and generally take precautions against the coronavirus, the large crowds that have gathered during years past at holiday events are not possible. In addition, when you are in addiction recovery, you face other challenges when it’s time to celebrate. Instead of partying this 4th of July, try these sober celebrations that can be just as fun and will keep you safe and healthy. Start New Traditions A lot of things have changed since the beginning of the year. ... Read more

Healing the Boy Crisis

What is the Boy Crisis? I stumbled across this idea as I was stepping into a new role at Spearhead Lodge. The Boy Crisis? What is it? How does it apply to the Spearhead guys? How do we heal it?  The Boy Crisis is the idea that societal and parental standards have created an environment where boys are not supported in expressing vulnerable feelings, but are told to “suck it up”, “be a man”, and “stop acting like a girl”. These messages that society sees as harmless or “toughening him up” creates a series of shame messages that manifest as ... Read more

Introducing Makana Path, “Trauma-Informed Care”

In our first blog of the Better Together series, Mandy Baker mentioned buzzwords being talked about a lot in the treatment industry. I’d like to discuss the buzzword “trauma-informed care” and how our program, Makana Path, delivers just that.  BRC has a long- and well-established reputation for specializing in treating chronic relapse, and in treating this high-risk population, we experienced continued chronic relapse. Patterns emerged from these experiences and it became apparent that unresolved trauma and unhealthy relationship dynamics were consistently a factor. From that, we wanted to create a program to address these concerns, while still providing an effective ... Read more

Why Setting Healthy Boundaries is Important

When you or a loved one is working through the challenges of addiction to drugs or alcohol, it will become important to understand the idea of boundaries. Substance use disorders are often accompanied by emotional and physical issues that may require you, as the recovering addict, to distance yourself or to lay down rules about what you will and will not tolerate from your addicted love one. Understanding why setting healthy boundaries is important will help you and your loved one through a successful recovery. What is a Healthy Boundary? A boundary can be physical, emotional, or psychological. A boundary ... Read more

Don’t Knock It Until You’ve Actually Tried It

I have spent many hours on the phone with nervous family members at the beginning of a client’s treatment episode having to reassure them as to the efficacy of 12 Step recovery.  Mothers and fathers, husbands and wives, or the children of these incoming clients are scared, discouraged, and exhausted. Their feelings are understandable, as is their desire to find a permanent solution. Nearly all have sent their loved one to treatment before, and many have unfortunately been forced to endure the crushing disappointment of multiple treatment attempts and multiple failures. These concerned families will often tell me that 12 ... Read more

What is a Functional Alcoholic? | Information and Self-Test

When you have a drink or two socially, you may not think you have a drinking problem. When that social drinking turns into something more intense, such as when you start planning your events and activities around whether or not alcohol will be present, you may be progressing toward alcoholism. If you suspect you might have an issue with alcohol, you can access information and self-tests to determine if you have a substance use disorder. You might consider yourself to be functional in your relationship with alcohol. What is a functional alcoholic? Does that truly exist? What Does It Mean ... Read more

The Intersection Between Addiction and Trauma

As a trauma therapist, I specialize in the intersection between addiction and trauma. Trauma is a word that not all identify with, especially early in treatment. Most of us with addiction grew up in homes with the unwritten rule “don’t talk, don’t feel, don’t trust”. So, when bad things happened, they were minimized, denied, or even blamed on us. We are all born with an internal radar system or “gut feelings” that helps us to identify unhealthy situations. But when the adults in our lives do not act on these experiences or treat them as unhealthy, we learn to not ... Read more

The Relationship Between Post-Traumatic Stress Disorder and Addiction

Post-traumatic stress disorder (PTSD) is a condition that can affect you after you have experienced or witnessed a traumatic event. June is National PTSD Awareness Month, appropriate in the midst of the COVID-19 pandemic that has caused so many people to struggle and face incredibly stressful situations. Sadly, PTSD can lead to addiction to drugs or alcohol. The relationship between post-traumatic stress disorder and addiction is complicated and is often a cycle that results in what is known as a dual diagnosis. What is PTSD When you have experienced or witnessed an event such as a car accident, an act ... Read more

Better Together: Introducing A BRC Original Blog Series

These days the treatment industry spends a lot of time talking about the latest trend in buzzwords.  We hear a lot about “trauma-informed care”, “evidence-based practice”, “dual diagnosis treatment”, and “outcomes”. While we put them on our websites and talk about them in marketing efforts, it’s rare that facilities implement all of these well. With busy schedules, clients and families to care for, and our own personal lives, it’s almost like implementing or applying these things in facilities and/or practice is an afterthought or just another box to check for licensing or accrediting bodies. We have worked hard at BRC ... Read more

Emotional Growth in Recovery | 4 Traits to Develop

Addiction recovery is about much more than physical healing. A holistic approach to addiction treatment focuses on the mind, body, and spirit. Detox is the critical first step, to cleanse the body of the addictive substances, but emotional growth in recovery is also vitally important. There are four traits to develop in recovery that will help you on your journey to a healthy future. A Process of Change The Substance Abuse and Mental Health Services Administration (SAMHSA) defines recovery as “a process of change through which individuals improve their health and wellness, live a self-directed life, and strive to reach ... Read more

Renewing Your Recovery | National Recommitment Month

Committing to recovery from your drug or alcohol addiction is a major step toward your continued health and well-being. Recovery is not a one-time event. Rather, your recovery is a lifelong process that needs your continuous focus and attention to be successful. Renewing your recovery commitment is a positive step to take during National Recommitment Month. What is a Commitment? True commitment is much more than simply making a statement that you are going to do something. For example, you may say “I’m committed to being a better employee at work.” How will you go about achieving that? Likewise, if ... Read more