Sobriety

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Postby j-ol » Wed Oct 18, 2017 2:07 pm

mascotte wrote:
came to wreck wrote:thats a chill drawing

my 2nd outpatient stint we had to go around the circle and say where we were on this type of chart that was on the back of our work booklets at the beginning of every group session
Image


Yeah, I was surprised how important are emotions in the recovery process. I didn't recognize anything that happened in my body, from joy to anger, I still, after almost 2 years of therapy, have trouble with coping with unpleasant emotions, my body immediately reacts in an unpredicted (usually defensive) manner.


I do group and individual counseling for addiction and mental health in the context of our public health care system. those diagrams & lists look cheesy af at first glance. but we do the same thing, daily identification of emotional states and how they appear in the body. I truly believe that finding equilibrium and practicing emotional regulation, which involves tuning the radio dial of attention directly to embodied emotions, is one of the most fundamental aspects of overcoming craving and dealing with challenging emotions. it develops the insular cortex and interoception, which in theory grows awareness of shifting emotional states. I try to explain emotions as patterns of sensory experience and I'm constantly asking people to find words to describe their bodily experience. I hope this doesn't come across as defensive. I guess I'm trying to offer a POV as to why treatment professionals would place so much emphasis on this. I do wish someone would create diagrams that aren't so infantilizing.
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Postby antoine » Wed Oct 18, 2017 2:10 pm

j-ol, i've been thinking about getting a master's in clinical mental health counseling and addiction counseling. can i pm you sometime about that?
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Postby j-ol » Wed Oct 18, 2017 2:13 pm

please do Antoine, I'd be happy to discuss. my own education was in counseling psychology, no specialization, but all of my professional experience has been in addiction treatment (7-8 years total)
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Postby antoine » Wed Oct 18, 2017 2:16 pm

awesome thanks. i'll let you know.
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Postby Buzz Fledderjohn » Wed Oct 18, 2017 2:22 pm

8.5 months
the beginning of the beginning of the end of the beginning
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Postby antoine » Wed Oct 18, 2017 2:26 pm

Buzz Fledderjohn wrote:8.5 months

awesome.
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Postby antoine » Wed Oct 18, 2017 2:27 pm

15 months here
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Postby lockheed » Wed Oct 18, 2017 2:32 pm

I've also put a lot of thought in to getting a masters in social work/counseling with a focus on substance abuse/addiction
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Postby antoine » Wed Oct 18, 2017 2:35 pm

lockheed wrote:I've also put a lot of thought in to getting a masters in social work/counseling with a focus on substance abuse/addiction

do it man. i'm trying to work up the gumption. been dragging my heels and the deadlines are coming up in a few months. i am still working on myself so it's kind of, i don't know. i'm never sure if i'm really ready for it. but it's something i'm passionate about now. i can't think of much else that would be as fulfilling as a career.
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Postby j-ol » Wed Oct 18, 2017 2:51 pm

it's not a glamorous or particularly well-compensated field of work, but as the requirements for practice/licensing become more stringent (long overdue imo) hopefully it'll be a much more viable long-term career. imo everyone working in mental health should have formal education (i.e. at least a master's) and ideally be regulated by their professional org. sadly this is not the case basically anywhere. 0.1% of my clients ask me about my education or experience, it's kinda baffling. sometimes they want to know if I've had substance problems/addiction, but that's basically it.

still, sad to say the job market is never drying up. society/institutions are def making progress but it's sloooooow.
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Postby antoine » Wed Oct 18, 2017 2:58 pm

j-ol wrote:it's not a glamorous or particularly well-compensated field of work, but as the requirements for practice/licensing become more stringent (long overdue imo) hopefully it'll be a much more viable long-term career. imo everyone working in mental health should have formal education (i.e. at least a master's) and ideally be regulated by their professional org. sadly this is not the case basically anywhere. 0.1% of my clients ask me about my education or experience, it's kinda baffling. sometimes they want to know if I've had substance problems/addiction, but that's basically it.

still, sad to say the job market is never drying up. society/institutions are def making progress but it's sloooooow.

Right, that's kind of the paradox of it. Profiting, to an extent, off the misery of others. But you're also helping them and capitalism is a thing, unfortunately.
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Postby antoine » Wed Oct 18, 2017 2:59 pm

and you know i don't think it should be glamorous and that's actually one of the things that attracts me to the field.
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Postby came to wreck » Wed Oct 18, 2017 3:01 pm

j-ol wrote:
mascotte wrote:
came to wreck wrote:thats a chill drawing

my 2nd outpatient stint we had to go around the circle and say where we were on this type of chart that was on the back of our work booklets at the beginning of every group session


Yeah, I was surprised how important are emotions in the recovery process. I didn't recognize anything that happened in my body, from joy to anger, I still, after almost 2 years of therapy, have trouble with coping with unpleasant emotions, my body immediately reacts in an unpredicted (usually defensive) manner.


I do group and individual counseling for addiction and mental health in the context of our public health care system. those diagrams & lists look cheesy af at first glance. but we do the same thing, daily identification of emotional states and how they appear in the body. I truly believe that finding equilibrium and practicing emotional regulation, which involves tuning the radio dial of attention directly to embodied emotions, is one of the most fundamental aspects of overcoming craving and dealing with challenging emotions. it develops the insular cortex and interoception, which in theory grows awareness of shifting emotional states. I try to explain emotions as patterns of sensory experience and I'm constantly asking people to find words to describe their bodily experience. I hope this doesn't come across as defensive. I guess I'm trying to offer a POV as to why treatment professionals would place so much emphasis on this. I do wish someone would create diagrams that aren't so infantilizing.


i completely agree and wasnt trying to sound dismissive of the diagram. i guess at the time in rehab it prob was eyeroll inducing or confusing as to why we had to do that exercise at the beginning of every session but like mascotte noted eventually i realized that one of the many reasons i used the way i did was to try to drown and forget the uncomfortable emotions i was having and at the same time i was completely unable to recognize what my emotions were or to place a name to them other than "i wanna use/drink/get annihilated cause i feel bad and dont wanna be myself or feel or exist even". shit even many yrs later emotions can be a bitch and i can quickly forget that emotions & feelings don't require a certain action/reaction from me, that it can be okay to feel a way and just sit with it until it passes and that a feeling isn't permanent but actions can be.
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Postby came to wreck » Wed Oct 18, 2017 3:04 pm

j-ol wrote:it's not a glamorous or particularly well-compensated field of work, but as the requirements for practice/licensing become more stringent (long overdue imo) hopefully it'll be a much more viable long-term career. imo everyone working in mental health should have formal education (i.e. at least a master's) and ideally be regulated by their professional org. sadly this is not the case basically anywhere. 0.1% of my clients ask me about my education or experience, it's kinda baffling. sometimes they want to know if I've had substance problems/addiction, but that's basically it.

still, sad to say the job market is never drying up. society/institutions are def making progress but it's sloooooow.


yeah a lot of ppl i knew in tx got their LCDC but never did a masters
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Postby lockheed » Wed Oct 18, 2017 5:09 pm

in nyc i'm going to have to get CASAC certified as a counselor, which takes like nine months, and then some (6-12 mos) field experience before i can realistically apply to the MSW program at Hunter, which I should get in to without much issue. You can do field stuff while getting your CASAC so I'm thinking I'll apply for grad school for Fall 2019. I'm going to apply to NYU as well, but I'm way more likely to get tuition waivers/financial aid at Hunter, on top of Hunter already being pretty affordable. I've done a lot of research and talked with plenty of counselors from my inpatient and outpatient in NYC, so I have a good sense of the expected salary (very low), not a big deal as long as grad school is paid for without loans or out of pocket. afaik, new york and social work professions in general are badly in need of male counselors (hunter grad students are 82% female, for example) and i'm poor so i think i can swing not having to pay.
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Postby mascotte » Wed Oct 18, 2017 5:14 pm

came to wreck wrote:
i completely agree and wasnt trying to sound dismissive of the diagram. i guess at the time in rehab it prob was eyeroll inducing or confusing as to why we had to do that exercise at the beginning of every session but like mascotte noted eventually i realized that one of the many reasons i used the way i did was to try to drown and forget the uncomfortable emotions i was having and at the same time i was completely unable to recognize what my emotions were or to place a name to them other than "i wanna use/drink/get annihilated cause i feel bad and dont wanna be myself or feel or exist even". shit even many yrs later emotions can be a bitch and i can quickly forget that emotions & feelings don't require a certain action/reaction from me, that it can be okay to feel a way and just sit with it until it passes and that a feeling isn't permanent but actions can be.


Can't agree more. Years of abuse and growing up in a dysfunctional family turned my responsiveness to my own emotions upside down. I still struggle with with my reactions to what's happening around me, usually overreacting, panicking, behaving aggressively towards myself and others. What you say about the temporary nature of emotions is so obvious but when things happen fast, my reactions just 'happen' without a second thought. We start and end each group session with describing our emotional state 'here and now'. You can't say you feel 'well' or 'bad', there are no positive or negative emotions, just pleasant and unpleasant ones and one must learn to recognize it and to name it. It was so difficult in the beginning but gradually the whole nuanced palette of various emotional states opened up for me.

I really enjoyed the 'emotional diary' we all were recommended to keep during the therapy. Every evening you chose 5 events and noted down what happened, what was your emotional reaction, what thought accompanied it and finally your bodily reaction. Those exercises really help dismantling and taking apart the spontaneous, intuitive behaviors, eventually changing the habitual behavior. At least in theory :)
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Postby antoine » Thu Oct 19, 2017 11:23 pm

mascotte wrote:
came to wreck wrote:
i completely agree and wasnt trying to sound dismissive of the diagram. i guess at the time in rehab it prob was eyeroll inducing or confusing as to why we had to do that exercise at the beginning of every session but like mascotte noted eventually i realized that one of the many reasons i used the way i did was to try to drown and forget the uncomfortable emotions i was having and at the same time i was completely unable to recognize what my emotions were or to place a name to them other than "i wanna use/drink/get annihilated cause i feel bad and dont wanna be myself or feel or exist even". shit even many yrs later emotions can be a bitch and i can quickly forget that emotions & feelings don't require a certain action/reaction from me, that it can be okay to feel a way and just sit with it until it passes and that a feeling isn't permanent but actions can be.


Can't agree more. Years of abuse and growing up in a dysfunctional family turned my responsiveness to my own emotions upside down. I still struggle with with my reactions to what's happening around me, usually overreacting, panicking, behaving aggressively towards myself and others. What you say about the temporary nature of emotions is so obvious but when things happen fast, my reactions just 'happen' without a second thought. We start and end each group session with describing our emotional state 'here and now'. You can't say you feel 'well' or 'bad', there are no positive or negative emotions, just pleasant and unpleasant ones and one must learn to recognize it and to name it. It was so difficult in the beginning but gradually the whole nuanced palette of various emotional states opened up for me.

I really enjoyed the 'emotional diary' we all were recommended to keep during the therapy. Every evening you chose 5 events and noted down what happened, what was your emotional reaction, what thought accompanied it and finally your bodily reaction. Those exercises really help dismantling and taking apart the spontaneous, intuitive behaviors, eventually changing the habitual behavior. At least in theory :)

This is good stuff. I need to be practicing this right now. Just delay the reaction time or let the emotion flare up and not react upon it. It's sort of like having a craving to smoke or drink. To react upon the emotion is to make it go away or deflect it. It's defensive. I need to be okay with shitty feelings.
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Postby antoine » Thu Oct 19, 2017 11:35 pm

And like a craving, with time it eventually passes.
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Postby Dawn Running Bear » Fri Oct 20, 2017 1:34 am

Had an absolute meltdown with my home group last night. We were talking about being restored to sanity and I'm clearly not sane right now, but I've been there and I've seen it in others and so I show up. It just came out as me bitching about the gaping hole in my guys where the wind whips through and burns and freezes me. The loneliness, the otherness, the hurt... I got a lot of support after the meeting, which was weird because I just wanted to go home. I talked to my sponsor more today than I have all week but really don't feel like I've said a fucking thing. I don't give a shit about my goddamn job but that's all he wants to talk about is me showing up to work. Maybe he just doesn't want to see me completely burn life down in sobriety.

I got out of a long-term relationship a few months ago and I feel really lost and alone and the circumstances surrounding her stepping out on me really have me re-evaluating my self-worth. I'm in a nowhere job. I'm really desperate for attention of any sort. Just like any other time in my life once I find something that makes me feel better I just run it into the fucking ground. I was hanging out with a girl for a second and it was so nice. She decided we should be friends. I really enjoy talking with her and spending time with her but it's an incredibly difficult transition to make and I end up fucking torn up inside when we go our separate ways and it's really hard to go on with my day, and yet I still try to start my day having coffee with her. I'm utterly fucked in the head and the heart and my spirit are broken.
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Postby antoine » Fri Oct 20, 2017 1:50 am

Are you maintaining your sobriety though, drb? Are you having thoughts of using?
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Postby Dawn Running Bear » Fri Oct 20, 2017 1:55 am

Yeah, man! I know how to make this feeling go away, if only for a night! I know how to run the show and tell everyone to fuck right off. I can go back to that. I know the time in between drinks sucks and the lyings and the wreckage I cause sucks, but I know how to make it go away too.

There's got to be way out of this. I can't get no relief
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Postby antoine » Fri Oct 20, 2017 2:00 am

:(
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Postby Dawn Running Bear » Fri Oct 20, 2017 2:00 am

I'm 2.5 years sober and can't stand hearing "you got this."

If I had any chance of having this I wouldn't be at the fucking meetings
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Postby antoine » Fri Oct 20, 2017 2:00 am

I'm never drinking again.
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Postby antoine » Fri Oct 20, 2017 2:01 am

i'd rather drink piss.
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Postby antoine » Fri Oct 20, 2017 2:01 am

hell ya
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Postby antoine » Fri Oct 20, 2017 2:02 am

antoine wrote:I'm never drinking again.
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Postby Dawn Running Bear » Fri Oct 20, 2017 2:03 am

oh fuck that. This is one day at a time. I haven't drank yet. Today is a victory as I'm in bed sober and not getting up for any damn thing. Tomorrow is my cousin's wedding that, as much as I'd like to make a scene and get shit-faced, I love my grandma too much, and my mom... well, everyone would not be okay and that's a fun thought in a way, but not very nice.

AA has really ruined my drinking
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Postby antoine » Fri Oct 20, 2017 2:05 am

whatever works dude
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Postby antoine » Fri Oct 20, 2017 2:07 am

i relapsed on nicotine though so maybe i shouldn't jinx myself. i don't really care though at the moment.
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