by: Michael Sigal
The first step towards recovery is an acknowledgement of the problem. The second step is full disclosure. Anything short of that will allow denial or secrecy to rule behavior and minimize the chance for recovery.
More than likely, those seeking treatment are well-practiced at keeping things to themselves and when asked to share the specifics of their habit may automatically withhold information. This is detrimental during the assessment or intake process for two reasons. The first is that without a clear and concise understanding of a patient’s current situation the staff is put at a huge disadvantage in formulating an initial recovery strategy. The second is that it feeds in to the “me against them” mentality. That’s not what rehab is about. Rehab is about “we.”
Of course, there are situations when someone is detoxing or under the influence which will make honest communication very difficult. In those cases, the staff is trained to respond accordingly.
There is another factor at play when it comes to being honest from the beginning of rehab and that’s money. There is typically a finite time that someone will enter in to treatment and every day that a patient withholds information is another day not spent on trying to effectively treat the addiction.
Some may not want to divulge everything about their addiction for a very simple reason. They’re embarrassed. The best way to overcome this is with the understanding that the person the patient is speaking to is not only trained and non-judgmental but has probably “heard it all” and won’t be shocked.
Being Honest Isn’t Easy, But It’s Worth It When we go to the Doctor and are asked about symptoms and possible causes for something ailing us we generally don’t blink and respond honestly. We know that by sharing everything we can our doctor will be better equipped to help us get well. That same type of honesty needs to be exercised upon entering rehab. It needs to take place at intake, during therapy and, just as importantly, upon exiting the facility and moving forward.
Being honest, whether with ourselves or relative strangers we’re entrusting with our care, isn’t easy. But the benefits far outweigh whatever reticence we may have.
About Michael Sigal
Michael Sigal is the founder and CEO of BookYourCare.com, the first and only service that provides unbiased reviews of residential treatment facilities. Longtime treatment industry professionals physically visit facilities to analyze and prepare thorough assessments in an effort to better inform those in need. Facilities cannot pay to be included in the BookYourCare directory. Additionally, BookYourCare provides the opportunity for prospective patients to bid on treatment stays to help keep high costs down.