‘Ad­dic­tion has many faces’

Giv­ing hope to those work­ing to over­come ad­dic­tions is­sues

The Labradorian - - Front Page - BY DANETTE DOO­LEY danette@nl.rogers.com

Teri Drosch is con­tin­u­ing her ef­forts to help peo­ple with ad­dic­tions in her com­mu­nity.

Drosch has over a decade of ex­pe­ri­ence work­ing in the field of men­tal health and ad­dic­tions.

The Happy Val­ley-Goose Bay woman started a Nar­cotics Anony­mous (NA) pro­gram about two years ago and has been re­search­ing more about var­i­ous ad­dic­tions.

Drosch has de­vel­oped an All Ad­dic­tions Anony­mous (AAA) pro­gram to help peo­ple suf­fer­ing from nu­mer­ous ad­dic­tions – from al­co­hol to drugs; gam­bling to pills; sex to food.

In de­scrib­ing what an ad­dict is, Drosch said it’s peo­ple “whose us­ing has be­come harm­ful, habitual and com­pul­sive.”

“Ad­dic­tion has many faces and the ad­dict sim­ply has a habit he or she can’t break. The com­pul­sion has be­come ir­re­sistible,” she said in so­cial me­dia post let­ting peo­ple know about the new AAA pro­gram.

Drosch said it’s not un­usual for peo­ple to have more than one ad­dic­tion.

“I’ve had a lot of out­reach over the last year from peo­ple re­quest­ing an all ad­dic­tions group or a sup­port group where we can dis­cuss gam­bling, al­co­hol, drugs and other ad­dic­tions rather than just fo­cus­ing on al­co­hol or drugs,” Drosch said.

Un­like many other ad­dic­tion pro­grams, AAA is not a 12-step pro­gram.

“It’s a group of in­di­vid­u­als with the same pur­pose: a de­sire to re­main sober from their ad­dic­tions,” she said. “We share life experiences. We of­fer sup­port.”

Anonymity is very im­por­tant, Drosch noted. What is shared dur­ing the meet­ings never leaves the group.

Re­cov­er­ing ad­dicts as men­tors

Re­cov­er­ing ad­dicts are also wel­come and are great men­tors for those who are work­ing to over­come ad­dic­tion.

Drosch is among the re­cov­er­ing ad­dicts. She has shared her own story with The Labradorian in the past, open­ing up about her ad­dic­tion to co­caine and mor­phine. After reach­ing out for help, Drosch be­gan see­ing a coun­sel­lor and was ac­cepted into an out-of-prov­ince treat­ment cen­tre. She has been sober from ad­dic­tion for about four years.

“When you’re at your rock bot­tom, you feel there’s no help out there. So I’m hop­ing, by get­ting more in­for­ma­tion out there, and by start­ing this lit­tle group, that one day there will be more treat­ment pro­grams here in the area to help peo­ple with ad­dic­tions,” she said.

Drosch is pro­gram co­or­di­na­tor with the Mokami Women’s Cen­tre. The cen­tre – which fo­cuses on em­pow­er­ment and equal­ity for women is sup­port­ive of her ef­forts in help­ing peo­ple over­come ad­dic­tion, she said, and have of­fered space free-of-charge for her to host the meet­ings.

Re­cov­ery is pos­si­ble

Drosch’s mes­sage to other ad­dicts is one of hope — that re­cov­ery is pos­si­ble.

“There are so many peo­ple reach­ing out. So many peo­ple want sup­port,” she stressed. “You give away what you know by shar­ing your sto­ries. And, if me shar­ing my story helps some­body, that’s very re­ward­ing.”

AAA meet­ings get un­der­way at 10 a.m. on Satur­days at 43 Gren­fell Street. Drosch can be con­tacted through the Goose Bay Re­cov­ery Face­book group.

SUB­MIT­TED

Teri Drosch said the All Ad­dic­tions Anony­mous group she founded starts ev­ery meet­ing with “The Seren­ity Prayer”.

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