Memoir of William L. White: Recovery Rising

Recovery Rising is the memoir of foremost recovery researcher and advocate, William L White. It has just been released on Amazon. White, for over five decades has had different roles in the addiction treatment field, beginning in Chicago’s inner city as a street worker working with addicts and the homeless, an addiction counselor, clinical supervisor, treatment administrator, educator, clinical and organizational consultant, and research scientist to being honored as the addiction field’s preeminent historian, one of the fields most visionary voices and a most prolific author.

In Recovery Rising, William White’s ideas, methods, and organizational studies emerge to give the reader an idea on how dynamic a leader White is in the modern addictions field. These stories, sometimes poignant, sometime humorous always are revealing and informative. Williams White’s life work has been affirmed by this memoir and(hopefully) a younger generation of addiction advocates and professionals will be inspired by his story  to continue his good work.

This link to his book on Amazon is:

https://www.amazon.com/Recovery-Rising-Retrospective-Addiction-Treatment-ebook/dp/B07526ZDVD/ref=sr_1_1?s=books&ie=UTF8&qid=1506351061&sr=1-1&keywords=recovery+rising

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Recovery Coaches working with sex offenders

Legal Consequences Crisis Management Team -Recovery coaches working with sex offenders

It is 5:30 am and a band of FBI and local sheriff authorities pull up to a New Jersey suburban house in a development not far from Philadelphia. Adorning Kevlar vests, and windbreakers with the yellow letters FBI on their backs, they storm past a toy doll stroller in the sidewalk. They bang on the door with their fist, demanding “Open up this is the FBI”. After a few more wraps, a bleary eyed woman about 40 years old opens the door a crack and peers out. With a burst of energy, five FBI agents and two local police enter her foyer, issue her a search warrant and spew out demands, only one she actually hears, “Your husband is under arrest for child pornography…where are the laptops, tablets, cell phones and computers?”

Emily, (all the real names in this story will be withheld for privacy purposes) is dazed. She is in her bathrobe, and slippers, her hair is mussed, her eyeglasses crooked. She is barely awake. She glances at the stairs. She sees her two children at the top of the stairs, as a troop of agents make their way up to them. The agents ascend, as her girls descend. They are squeezing towards the wall making way for the army of six foot tall, 250 pound men barreling past them. They are asking “Mommy, what is happening?” A sheriff from the local police department asks where her husband is. She says he is at work; he works the midnight shift at a local hospital. The Sheriff gets on his walkie-talkie and bursts out some demands, checking on a similar event at her husband’s workplace.

It is 6:00 am, and Tom is just wrapping up from his shift as a nurse. His supervisor walks up to him with a force of blue windbreakers flanking him on either side. “Tom,” his supervisor says, “these gentlemen want to see you in my office”. As they turn to go to the office to FBI agents take Tom at the elbows and nearly lift him off his feet. He is escorted to the supervisor’s office, is placed in an arm chair and the door slams. Tom hears the words he has feared for the past two decades. “You are under arrest for the possession of, and the suspected distribution, copying, or advertising of images containing sexual depictions of minors.” For some strange reason, Tom is relieved. He thinks “It’s over, it is finally over.”

An unlikely band of brothers

It is Monday night, a steady stream of middle aged men drift into a hospital conference room, and take a seat. One of them opens a gym bag and starts to place books, pamphlets and tri-fold fliers on the table. A clear plastic envelope stuffed with one dollar bills is placed next to a thin loose-leaf binder. He sits down, opens the binder, checks the time on his cell phone and says, “Welcome to the Monday night meeting of Sex and Love Addicts Anonymous, my name is Ken, and I am a sex and love addict.” The seemingly normal cohort of men reply, “Hi Ken”.

The Monday night meeting of Sex and Love Addicts Anonymous begins. The reading is on Step Three; made a decision to turn our will and our lives over to the care of God, as we understood God. During the share a newcomer, Tom, tells his story about what brought him into the rooms tonight. He is not sure he can be helped. He knows he has been a porn addict for all of his adult life. He says he has just been found out and he has no idea what will happen next, to his life, to his marriage, to his kids. He was advised to go to a 12-step meeting for sex addiction and luckily, he saw this meeting listed when he searched online.

The members of this unlikely band of brothers looks at Tom. His head is down. His focus is on the ravaged cuticles of his right thumb. As he raises his thumb to his mouth, a tear rolls down his cheek. They know how he feels. Each one of them have felt this same despair. Joe raises his hand to share. Joe is almost 45, yet one would think he is no older than 35. His Goorin Brothers Slayer cap is on backwards, his flannel plaid shirt is unbuttoned revealing an LA Dodgers vintage t-shirt. Appropriately ripped skinny jeans end in a pair of Vans slip-ons. He gets current, talking about his therapist, his groups and what the third step means to him. Then he looks directly at Tom. “I know there is no cross talk in this meeting, so let me just say this, Tom, can we talk after the meeting?”

Joe knows what has happened to Tom. Tom need not even say the word ‘legal’ for the subliminal message to be delivered. Joe knows because it happened to him, less than two years ago. The Cop Knock. The end of life as he knew it. The opening up of a new world. A new life without any more hiding. Relief.

The start of a new life

Joe and Tom walk to the hospital café and Joe buys Tom a soda and a sandwich. It is the first thing Tom has eaten in two days. The café is empty, they find a corner table and sit down. After just a few minutes, Tom’s experience from the last week is told. Joe’s head was nodding the whole time, but he lets Tom talk.

Before an hour was up, Joe had given Tom the names of three men, Michael, Steve and Jay. Also, the phone number of an attorney and of a therapist that specialized in treating sex offenders. As they walked out of the hospital, Joe said the first call should be to Michael. Michael will coordinate everything. And Joe was right, Michael coordinated everything.

Michael answers the phone at 9:30pm, and Tom was on the other line. Michael was already informed by Joe, just minutes before. By 10:00, Michael had assembled the Legal Consequences Crisis Management Team on a conference call and briefed us all. The attorney appointment will be made by the client, Tom. The therapist introduction will be on the phone, and the first group therapy meeting is tomorrow and Joe will bring Tom. Michael will coordinate the lawyer and therapist calls and speak to his parents. Jay and Steve will call Tom daily, for support. I am assigned to work with the wife. All of these recovery coaching services will be free to Tom.

Doing service to give back what we have freely received

Every one of us responds to this call. It initiates a recruitment effort that rivals the Avenger’s response to Ultron’s threat to eradicate humanity. This Legal Consequences Crisis Management Team is committed to respond to any sexual addiction crisis- the family affected by a patriarch’s incest, the individual devastated by sexual trauma, or the man that has heard the “Cop Knock”. We know they feel alone, whether they have been abandoned by their family, abused by loved ones or in this case, arrested for an illegal act. Tom needs this “Avengers” team to help him, because this is territory he is not familiar with. However, this team is very familiar with it; the family dynamics, the law, the courtroom, treatment and therapy, prison and the re-entry process. They have walked this path, and emerged on the other side, as healthier and better people for the experience. So, we are there for Tom, in order to keep our own sobriety, we are doing service to give back what we have freely received.

This band of Recovery Coaches comes to the aid of individuals dealing with the crisis of legal consequences of their sex addiction in the New Jersey, Delaware and Southeastern Pennsylvania region.

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

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Posted in Addiction, Addiction Recovery Posts, alcohol, Alcoholism, body image, Drug Abuse, Family Dynamics, Gambling, internet addiction disorder, love addiction, mental health, Opioid addiction, Parents, Pornography, pornography addiction, Recovery Coaching, Relapse, relationships, Research, Sex Addiction, Sleep Deprivation, Sleep Loss, Sponsor | Tagged , | Comments Off on Recovery Coaches working with sex offenders

New Training Resource for Supervisors of Peers and Recovery Coaches

Recently, a new resource on the Supervision of Peer Based Recovery Support Services has been published under a grant from the Regional Facilitation Center and the Oregon Health Authority, specifically from the Health Services Division of the OHA. This is a resource is designed for the training of supervisors of Peer Recovery Support Specialists and Recovery Coaches.

Peer-based recovery support services (P-BRSS) have grown exponentially in recent years as an adjunct, and in some cases, an alternative to professionally-directed addiction treatment. P-BRSS are also being integrated within allied human services, primary health care, the child welfare system, the criminal justice system, and managed behavioral healthcare organizations. Reviews of the research to date on P-BRSS (See White, 2009; Reif, et al, 2014; Boisvert, et al, 2008) suggest salutatory effects of such services on long-term recovery outcomes. A growing body of literature explores such areas as the history and theoretical foundation of P-BRSS, the role of such services within drug policy, the integration of P-BRSS into recovery community organizations, avoiding role ambiguity and role conflicts in the delivery of P-BRSS, and ethical issues that arise in the delivery of P-BRSS.

But surprisingly little has been written on the supervision of peer recovery support services. Through support of a grant from the Oregon Health Authority (Health Services Division), Substance Use Disorder Peer Supervision Competencies has just been completed. The report is authored by Eric Martin, Anthony Jordan, Michael Razavi, Van Burnham, IV, Ally Linfoot, Monta Knudson, Erin Devet, Linda Hudson, and Lakeesha Dumas. J. Thomas Shrewsbury. Dr. Jeff Marotta, Dr. Ruch Bichsel, and Kitty Martz served as editors. The supervisory competencies are organized within four sections of the report: Recovery-Oriented Philosophy, Providing Education & Training, Facilitating Quality Supervision, and Performing Administrative Duties. This document is an invaluable resource for organizations involved in the recruitment, selection, orientation, training, and on-going supervision and evaluation of recovery coaches and other support specialists. It stands as an excellent complement to SAMHSA’s 2015 Core Competencies for Peer Workers in Behavioral Health Services.

I think the greatest mistake that could be made in guiding the delivery of P-BRSS would be to assume that traditional models of clinical supervision within addiction treatment can be indiscriminately applied to the supervision of P-BRSS delivery. If that occurs, peers providing recovery support service will be turned into little more than junior counselors and the potential vitality of that role and the broader role of community in long-term recovery will be lost.

P-BRSS require a distinct role definition, different standards of practice, and different models of supervision. Substance Use Disorder Peer Supervision Competencies will help assure such distinctiveness. I commend this report to all organizations providing peer-based recovery support services.

This blog post has been written by William White. The link to this article at the William White Papers web site is:

http://www.williamwhitepapers.com/blog/2017/05/new-resource-on-supervision-of-peer-recovery-support-services.html

William (Bill) White is an Emeritus Senior Research Consultant at Chestnut Health Systems / Lighthouse Institute and past-chair of the board of Recovery Communities United. Bill has a Master’s degree in Addiction Studies and has worked full time in the addictions field since 1969 as a street worker, counselor, clinical director, researcher and well-traveled trainer and consultant.   He has authored or co-authored more than 400 articles, monographs, research reports and book chapters and 18 books. His book, Slaying the Dragon – The History of Addiction Treatment and Recovery in America, received the McGovern Family Foundation Award for the best book on addiction recovery. Bill was featured in the Bill Moyers’ PBS special “Close to Home: Addiction in America” and Showtime’s documentary “Smoking, Drinking and Drugging in the 20th Century.” Bill’s sustained contributions to the field have been acknowledged by awards from the National Association of Addiction Treatment Providers, the National Council on Alcoholism and Drug Dependence, NAADAC: The Association of Addiction Professionals, the American Society of Addiction Medicine, and the Native American Wellbriety Movement. Bill’s widely read papers on recovery advocacy have been published by the Johnson Institute in a book entitled Let’s Go Make Some History: Chronicles of the New Addiction Recovery Advocacy Movement.

You can contact Bill White at: http://www.williamwhitepapers.com/ or bwhite@chestnut.org

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