Are You Watching Your Friend Self-Destruct?

Friends often see the self-destruction effects of drug and alcohol abuse. Sometimes they are the only people close to the addict, and they feel the helplessness as their friend pulls away from them. This is especially true if family lives elsewhere, or if close family has passed on, or otherwise detached from the addict. Sometimes you are all they have.

Friends don’t want to lose friends, especially in such a devastating manor. Friends, being uneducated on the finer details of addiction are usually stymied when total logic fails to impress and change their buddy’s activities and lifestyle. They are at a total loss.

Friends can come together to hold an “intervention” which is designed to begin an open conversation; pulling the covers, so to speak, making the addict or alcoholic aware  that everyone knows, cares and wants to help. This is better done with a professional present, or a strong member of a related 12-step group, e.g. AA, CA or NA.

In many instances, the affected friend rebukes the idea of rehab in an in-patient program, citing reasons this cannot be done “at this time”; they can’t take time off work, or they know too many people in town to go to those meetings.

In order to prevent complete failure of the intervention, a Sober Coach can be arranged by the pals. With most Sober Coaches being in recovery themselves, they can provide a valuable, effective dialogue while being less susceptible to the excuses and emotions of the addict.

The Recovery Coaching system includes:

  • Regularly scheduled sessions
  • Targeted referrals to detox, treatment, 12-step meetings, etc.
  • Planning strategies based on the concerns of the addict and the friends
  • A stable, consistent contact throughout the entire recovery process and into life after addiction

A Sober Coach should practice the same standards of Professional Ethics as do the rest of the mental health industry. This includes strict confidentiality,  Right to Treatment, Information Release choices, as well as a complete intake and fact-finding session.

Sober Coaches are very often employed by, and paid by members of this inner circle, as the typical addict cannot afford services. Part of the coach’s planning, however, includes accountability. We do encourage the addict or alcoholic to become responsible for his or her own recovery. This often takes time, as it is worked into the life-planning stage of our work. Insurance “may” cover our services, but would be on a reimbursement basis. Sober Coaches are always paid in advance. Friends can pay for services, as can family or an employer.

The terms Sober Coach and Sober Companion are often used interchangeably. However, there are differences:

  • Sober Coaches meet regularly in “sessions” and provide support, planning strategies, hold client accountability, and perform other scheduled services
  • Sober Companions stay with the addict or alcoholic up to 24/7 for periods of time ranging from a few days to several months and includes many features of the Coach.

Sober Coaches and Companions are not therapists, counselors, or sponsors, and they should never be confused with them. Each discipline has a place within the continuum of service. The relationship between the coach and the client could continue for months or years, as the coach’s duties have so much to do with actual life-planning and support, However, the job of the coach really boils down to helping the client to learn life skills and then working with them to become self-sufficient and independent.

Please consider using me as your choice of a Sober Coach. I will work diligently towards sobriety for your alcoholic or addicted friend, while maintaining the strictest confidentiality.

Read about my qualifications here Read More…