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Ending the 12 Step Revolving Door
When you look at the concept of the traditional 12 step program, it seems inviting at first. It is the oldest form of addiction treatment we have, the majority of treatment programs across the nation use it, and it may even be court ordered for people with a DUI. Even though the steps were first published in 1938, they have not evolved with research over the last few decades.
Meanwhile, addiction studies have advanced rapidly in just the last few years. We have a better understanding of what dependence is and what it is not. Now we can leave 12 step behind, one successful recovery at a time. When we say goodbye to this outdated method, we walk away from many other things too.
Part of the problem with giving yourself to the 12 step approach is that it treats dependence as an unstoppable problem, something that will stay with you for the rest of your life. It doesn’t matter if you stop seeing your friends who use illicit substances, if you enter into long-term recovery programs, and tell yourself that you are never going to go down the same path again. According to the traditional method, you may go for days, months, and years substance free, but you’ll always be an addict.
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