The Right Step’s Galleria and Woodlands intensive outpatient centers in Houston, Texas are offering an exclusive track for LGBTQI clients seeking a supportive, validating approach to addiction treatment.
Addiction recovery is all about learning new skills. In intensive outpatient treatment, clients also have the opportunity to implement those skills in a real-world environment. To Steve Crump, these opportunities are what make intensive outpatient programs (IOPs) so effective.
“In intensive outpatient treatment, clients not only learn about addiction and how to stay sober but also implement immediate changes in their lives,” he says. “Education is important but it’s not enough by itself. Clients need experience to gain a sense of mastery over the things they’ll need to do to sustain their recovery long-term. By the end of eight weeks, they know what to do because they’ve been practicing it all along.”
“Hey man, come in from the cold. You’re welcome here.” These are Tip McKay’s words for anyone struggling with addiction.
It’s a cold Tip knows all too well. Many years ago, he was in the grip of addiction himself. Like many others, his recovery journey had ups and downs. He completed an intensive outpatient program but felt over-confident in his ability to stay sober. Knowing that he was at high risk of relapse, at his coin out ceremony his counselor said, “See you soon.”
And she did. About nine months later, he “crashed and burned” and called his former counselor to get back into treatment. When he showed up for stabilization at inpatient treatment, he weighed just 112 pounds and looked grey and lifeless. He completed another round of intensive outpatient treatment and over time, his counselor saw a marked difference in the way he looked, walked and talked. In fact, she saw his potential to one day become an addiction counselor.
For nearly three decades, Grant Perry has served individuals struggling with addiction and mental health issues as well as their families. From San Diego to St. Louis, Chicago to Houston, he has directed hospital programs, inpatient and outpatient treatment centers for both adults and adolescents, and an outreach program.
In 1999, Grant joined The Right Step as a lead counselor for the adult residential program. One year later he was promoted to program director, a role he dedicated himself to for 10 years. From there, he stepped into the role of executive director.
There comes a point in many people’s recovery journey when they just “need a dose of Terri.” They need someone who cares unconditionally, who won’t be repelled by their anger or give up on them even in the most difficult situations. At The Right Step Hill Country, that person is Terri Edwards.
Determined and direct, Terri helps clients identify their feelings and express them in healthy ways. If they’re feeling raw and angry, she doesn’t run away. Instead, she meets them where they’re at.
Vicki serving ice cream to a client during an event.
Over 17 years ago, Vicki Piper made a decision that changed the rest of her life: She went to rehab. She met with a therapist; she worked the 12 Steps. Today, her recovery remains one of her top priorities as well as one of her most treasured accomplishments.
Finding the Answers Within
Vicki is finding the answers in her own life but she doesn’t pretend to have all the answers for her clients.
Synthetic and designer drugs have been in the news because of the harm they have caused and the frenetic law-making that has tried to keep up with the manufacturers of these drugs. Synthetic drugs, also sometimes labeled “designer,” are simply substances that produce a high and that are not naturally occurring. In some cases, they mimic a natural drug, such as marijuana.
One of the most damaging, and most prevalent, of the designer drugs has been synthetic marijuana. For a while, these products were sold legally under the brand names Spice and K2. They were being sold mostly in gas station shops, where they were packaged to appeal to young people, even going so far as to use cartoon characters. These drugs were being labeled as harmless products like potpourri and incense. Those using them, however, knew better. K2 and Spice were designed to be smoked and to impart a high to the user.
How The Right Step Helps Clients and their Families Stay on the Road to Recovery
Corina remembers vividly how she felt as she reached to open the door to The Right Step drug and alcohol treatment center for the first time. The emotional gamut ran from scared to angry, with “extremely worried” sprinkled liberally into the mix.
Yes, she sang the conventional “wow” and raised it a couple of “Ws.” The Right Step made that much difference in her life.
“I was truly amazed at how [remarkable] the place was,” she recalled several months after treatment. “The center is nice. The food is pretty good. The staff is very nice and accommodating. And the classes/lectures are inspiring. This was truly the best experience of my life!”
A recent article on smartguy.com does an excellent job breaking down just what a recovering addict endures. Medically, the body goes through a state of detoxification – an experience that can be extremely uncomfortable. Then, once detox is complete and the body is starting to heal, the psychological work must begin. Drug abuse invariably has a psychological trigger, which is different for every addict, but it must be confronted and overcome for real healing to begin.
Like many life-altering experiences, the move from drug and alcohol addiction to a successful, lasting recovery is a process. It requires a plan, and dedication to stick to the plan. But, first, there has to be the realization that a change is necessary.
It’s that first step, outlined in an article on www.helpguide.org, that keys every succeeding step – and that likely determines whether an addict can successfully replace a destructive lifestyle with a vibrant, healthy life.