SANDRA AND ALCOHOLISM

Sandra came to New Leaf this year because her alcoholism had impacted her health so badly she had been hospitalised, and even on leaving the hospital had become so weak that she had carers coming to her home every day.

Sandra’s alcohol abuse had also impacted her family life; her siblings and partner were having to care for her. The worry and anxiety she was causing them was getting too much to bear.

Sandra also suffered from anxiety and would use alcohol to self-medicate. Enough was enough and Sandra knew with her health declining and relationships breaking down she needed a new way to live her life alcohol-free so she could find some peace.

Sandra completed the full 28-day programme we offer here at New Leaf and in that time wrote her life story and we requested letters of consequence from her siblings and partner, which opened her eyes to how her drinking and behaviours were not only hurting her but everyone around her. She knew she was on her last chance to save these relationships. Throughout morning check-ins, one to one’s and groups, Sandra learnt to be honest and open about how she was feeling, she found her voice and slowly her anxiety reduced and she began to believe that recovery was possible.

Sandra also completed written work with her recovery workers and support worker. This focused on learning how 12 step recovery could change her thinking towards addiction and her life. Looking at triggers helped her understand the importance of a 12 step programme and taught her how to defend herself against them. Sandra struggled with the written work but with extra support and a slightly different approach gained a fantastic understanding of the 12 steps and an understanding of herself and her behaviours.

Sandra got involved in the groups we provide here at New Leaf and looked at things like co-dependency and ego, again getting a deeper understanding of herself and the patterns of thought and behaviour that led to drinking.  Sandra did need extra support regarding her son who has his own personal issues. We arranged and facilitated phone calls with his support network so that boundaries could be put into place. As Sandra lives far away from New Leaf she couldn’t attend the aftercare programme we provide so again we assisted her with a phone call so she could get aftercare in her area.

Sandra’s last week at New Leaf was writing a plan for recovery on leaving. Attending mutual aid meetings, getting a sponsor and meditation was top of that list. I am pleased to say Sandra left New Leaf and kept to her plan, she regularly attends meetings and is still sober. Sandra’s relationships are being rebuilt and today she has hope for the future.

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