Every so often, a post of mine strikes a chord in many people, and the issue of Airbnb vs. Recovery Residences (cities favoring party homes but not recovery homes) garnered a LOT of responses.
One response, which I did not anticipate, came from Dr. Robert Moran, who is Certified in General Psychiatry and Addiction Psychiatry and the founder of Wellington Retreat [Disclosure: Dr. Moran is a client of our firm].
I had made the following comment in my blog (below) regarding the need to regulate any such recovery residence that is offering services to people while in treatment (contrasted with a home where people in recovery have voluntarily elected to reside together):
Even if the patient attends the very best treatment program around (and there are a multitude of exceptional treatment programs and recovery residence providers throughout Florida), if the patient-resident is simply not ready to accept self-responsibility for their own recovery, no treatment program or recovery residence can ever force that message home. It’s not a medication that is easily administered. Sometimes, it takes getting arrested, or overdosing, or being homeless, for the recovery journey to start in earnest.
On this point, Dr. Moran responded as follows:
I have a different opinion about one statement: “if the patient-resident is simply not ready to accept self-responsibility for their own recovery, no treatment program or recovery residence can ever force that message home.”
I think we demonstrate in our program that the acceptance of self-responsibility is something that is learned. Most, if not all, of the patients admitted to our program lack a sense of adult responsibility, usually due to their psychiatric illness. We focus upon this as part of their illness(es) and help the patient gradually gain the appreciation of accepting self-responsibility (which coincides with the illness(es) responding to treatment).
It’s akin to motivation to change. When I was in medical school, we were taught that one needed to wait for the patient to be ready to change. Now, with the help of Motivation Enhancement Therapy, we actually help the individual through various stages to becoming highly motivated to change.
It’s very encouraging to know that, despite insurance companies’ oftentimes arbitrary refusal to pay for services, which places a significant financial strain on providers, facilities such as Dr. Moran’s continue with furthering their mission of healing those with the disease of Substance Use Disorder.
It is positive stories such as this that rarely, if ever, get into the mainstream press (if there is even such a thing anymore).