The Place over the rainbow: Addiction Recovery and the LGBTQ communities
Addiction does not discriminate! Whether you are an inner city youth, a college student, middle-aged, or a more mature individual, the phenomenon of addiction can take hold of you. Within the LGBTQ communities addiction has been a core issue for decades, even prior to the Stonewall incident, which ironically started in a bar in Greenwich Village in New York City. Lesbian and gay leaders in the U.S. have always advocated for greater access for addiction treatment and prevention. Some segments, mostly voluntary, non-profits have taken up the work to assist, while others, more public segments of our society has not affirmed the existence of quality addiction healthcare for LGBTQ individuals.
There are still forces in society that continue to send a message that persons from the LGBTQ communities are “less than” and this experience can begin with the person’s family of origin, which can cause extreme self doubt, shame and guilt. Often, an addicitve, mood altering susbstance can temporarily meet the need to “unplug” from the stresses of believing what others might say about you.
The ravages of addiction can often manifest in painful ways, such as: alienation from love ones, legal issues, financial stress, career challenges, loss of sense of self and many other negative consequences. The individual struggle with same-sex attraction, or sexual identity is only exacerbated by an active addiction. The shame that often is associated with addiction can be coupled with the inner and interpersonal conflicts already exisitng in the life of a person grappling with their sexual identity, or love relationships. Too often, we see individuals in acitve addiction ending up incarcerated, hospitalized in a psychiatric institution, or overdose and die.
There is a solution! We know that addiction is a brain disease that respnods well to a smart designed, best-practice addiction healthcare. At Providence Treatment, we take a biopsychosocial and spiritual approach to addiciton recovery. We help individuals and families address any dysfunction that may contribute to the active disease of addiction. We provide resources and interventions to help eliminate shame and lessen any guilt that may serve to perpetuate the life of addiction. There is a way to live with more ease, a way to live with more connectedness and authenticity.
Providence Treatment conducts an outpatient LGBTQ addiction recovery psychotherapy group weekly in our Center City Philadelphia office. If you, or a loved one would like to become a client at Providence Treatment, please contact us today at www.providencetreatment.com