Our Clients Come From Every Walk of Life and Struggle With Every Kind of Drug

Each person has their own story of where they came from and how they got to this place in their life. The Center often works with people well before they have decided to change anything about their substance use, in an effort to motivate clients to make healthy, life-promoting, choices.

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People drink and use drugs for reasons. Most know what those reasons are when given the chance to explore their relationship with substances without judgment or mandates to change.

Drugs do all the things that medicines do.  They provide energy and stimulation, they soothe distress, they medicate physical and emotional pain, and they allow us to free our minds from the world around us, even if only for a little while.

Not everyone who uses substances gets into trouble, but many who do develop problems have experienced trauma in their lives. Experiences such as physical and sexual abuse, the effects of poverty and racism, and emotional neglect leave people vulnerable to the soothing or exciting effects of alcohol and drugs.

Come As You Are

We welcome people who are still using, who don’t know whether they want to change, or how, and who are looking for a thoughtful alternative to “quit now and forever” treatment programs. A person’s goals can range from complete abstinence to controlled or safer use. We move as quickly or slowly as the client can, and we recognize that the final outcome of treatment is not always certain at the beginning and that successes can be both small and large.

When you told me that it’s entirely my choice to drink or not, I felt like you had just let me out of a cage.  When you told me that it would be better and safer to drink openly than to drink in secret, I felt like I could breathe.  I felt like a thinking adult, not like a bad child.”

Hitting Bottom Is Not a Motivation to Change

Waiting until a person suffers serious consequences of their use is no guarantee that they will be successful in treatment. And we don’t want anyone to have to suffer any more than they already are. Harm Reduction Therapy is suited for anyone who is questioning whether their use of drugs and alcohol is a problem and is seeking effective solutions.  People who seek us out have tried abstinence-based approaches and found them to be ineffective or undesirable; have relapsed after attempts to be “clean and sober;” and often suffer from emotional, relationship or other life problems that they experience as equally pressing as their substance use.  Typically, most are looking for an alternative to traditional, 12-step-based treatment.

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