We asked a leader from the RECOVER ministry to answer some questions about addiction, the RECOVER 12-step program, and how to help someone with an addiction. Here, Archie tells us about his journey to recovery and how he would tackle approaching someone with addiction issues.
Archie, how would you support a friend or family member you suspect may have an addiction issue?
I would have to listen and understand what issues they are going through first. Then I could make a wise decision on how to help them. If they have a directly affected addiction, I would suggest attending a 12-step program like RECOVER at Willow Creek or a Celebrate Recovery (CR) meeting close to them. I would tell them what to expect at the meeting. I would also recommend counseling after attending a 12-step program for a month.
When did you know it was time to seek help for your addiction issues?
My spouse told me to go to Celebrate Recovery or not come home. Sometimes it takes strong measures to accept help. I needed help and counseling.
My spouse heard of an addiction center called Faithfull and True in Minnesota. I read about it online and signed up for an extensive 3-day workshop. The workshop is where I learned when, how, and why my addiction got started. I attended counseling for two more years before I felt healed.
I have been attending RECOVER for ten years now. I am a leader, and it has been a lot of hard work, but it has all been worth it.
What has been the greatest challenge in your recovery journey?
Coming out of denial about my addiction and accepting it. Then doing whatever it takes to overcome it. None of it is easy, but I will never regret this journey to health.
What has been the most encouraging part of your recovery?
The people–my co-leader and sponsor and the people at my table. The most rewarding part has been using all that I have experienced and learned from others in RECOVER and then using the gifts God has given me to give back. I find it especially encouraging when supporting other men who go on to overcome their issues.
If you want to learn more about the RECOVER 12-step program at Willow Creek, please follow this link.
What is RECOVER And Who is it For? Find out more about the program’s 12 steps, which issues can be addressed and what to expect in a meeting.
Worried about a friend or loved one? See this article: Loving An Addict: Identifying Substance Abuse and How To Help.
For more on practical ways to deal with mental health issues, and stories of others who have been there too, go here for our full list of resources.