Episode 343 – A Brief History of Alcoholism and Treatment
Today we have Charlie. He is 35, from Missouri and took his last drink on July 7, 2020.
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Highlights from Paul
Addiction is a modern phenomenon. Alcohol has been around for centuries. Early “treatment” of alcoholics included being jailed, tortured, and often executed for being possessed by demons. As treatment has evolved, we are moving toward FLOW states. Our mental energies are redirected from addiction toward creating healthier neural connections. In the 1930’s, alcoholism was classified as a fatal medical condition. In 1935 Bill W co-founded AA. In 1949 the Hazelden Foundation was born, thus creating our modern-day rehab and treatment structures. https://www.cornerstoneofrecovery.com/a-history-of-addiction-and-addiction-treatment/
Fortunately, people are recovering from alcoholism because the stigma is softening, and people are recognizing this is more a disease of disconnection and lack of community. Check out this video of the Recovery Elevator Bozeman retreat. https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=vFoqj3xeFUI
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[16:09] Charlie took his last drink on July 7, 2020He has been to 54 different treatment He just wrote a memoir. He writes, blogs, and enjoys experiencing life.
Charlie’s mom passed away when he was 13. He didn’t know how to handle his emotions, so he turned to substances. The emotional damage compounded over the years.
Charlie’s drinking was a result of unresolved grief and trauma, emotional damage from a succession of stepmothers, and lack of success as an actor. Charlie drank and used drugs. In 2017, his health became an issue. He started exploring detox and learned about alcoholism. In 2019 he was in his 15th IOP program, but still wasn’t surrendering.
He had to go back to Lincoln to address some legal issues. He relapsed several times; he was emotionally and spiritually bankrupt. In June of 2020, he was receptive to love and faith from his higher power. He decided to implement what he learned at the facilities he experienced. He relapsed again, but in July he realized alcohol wasn’t working for him.
Charlie maintained a job through most of his addiction which provided insurance and access to treatment. He was privileged and knows he had access to therapists and treatment modalities many don’t. He did build up a lot of medical debt.
Charlie overcomes cravings or negative emotions with music, cleaning, calling friends, visiting family. He also journals and meditates. He has learned to listen to his emotions and ask, what do you need?
Cognitively Charlie processed his trauma in treatment. He didn’t process the trauma emotionally or spiritually until he had been sober for a few months. Once he processed the trauma, he learned to love himself and heal the emotional trauma. His relationships with his dad and his sister evolved in an amazing way.
Charlie began writing in 2018 but continued drinking until 2020. His book has provided some built-in accountability. https://www.amazon.com/At-Least-Not-Frog-Alcoholism-ebook/dp/B09B5MFT1X/ref=cm_cr_arp_d_pb_opt?ie=UTF8
Charlie is a fan of gratitude list and believes that gratitude+humility=happiness. He loves travel from beach to mountains and is grateful he can remember his adventures.
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