In early recovery from addiction to drugs or alcohol there are many struggles that an individual will face.
Depression, shame, and cravings are not uncommon in the early days of ones recovery from addiction. While there can be some general tips for early recovery, such as attending support groups or residing in sober living, there are issues that do not apply across the board for those in their early recovery to drug or alcohol addiction. Many of these issues can be gender specific. Males and females face different challenges in their struggles with drug or alcohol addiction. It is for this reason that Aftermath Addiction Treatment Center, located in Wakefield, MA, offers both Men's Addiction Treatment Program and Women's Addiction Treatment Program. The team at Aftermath Addiction Treatment Center offers gender specific treatment plans for all our levels of care, ranging from the Partial Hospitalization Program (PHP), the Intensive Outpatient Program (IOP), and the Outpatient Program (OP). Aftermath Addiction Treatment Center’s clinical team will work with drug or alcohol addicted individuals to create a treatment plan that is unique to their individualized needs. Through the use of Individual Therapy and Group Therapy, clinicians will work on the underlying causes of an individual’s addiction. An individual is more than their addiction. At Aftermath Addiction Treatment Center of MA, we understand this fact. It is for this reason we offer gender specific treatment plans, to address the gender specific issues and remove any obstacles that stand in the way of full recovery from addiction to drugs or alcohol.
Meet Jenna Boudreau, Chief Operating Officer at Aftermath Addiction Treatment Center
Jenna Boudreau is Aftermath Addiction Treatment Center’s Chief Operating Officer. As Chief Operating Officer, Jenna oversees the day-to-day operations at Aftermath Addiction Treatment Center. Jenna brings years of experience in the field as she has worked as a behavioral health technician, case manager, and director of operations. But more important than her experience working in the field of substance abuse and mental health, is that fact that Jenna has over 5 years in recovery from the disease of addiction. She has walked in the client’s shoes and experienced the hardships of early recovery from addiction. Jenna brings a unique perspective as a mother in recovery from addiction. She is the mother to an amazing son, Amari. As a strong advocate for the many pathways to recovery from addiction, Jenna is always willing to meet people where they are at. Jenna has some advice for drug or alcohol addicted women who are in early recovery:
The Importance of Being Around Other Women in Early Recovery
I think it is important to know your self-worth is not based on “how many people want you” or “thinking that you are hot”. As women, we come in broken and a lot of us survived our addiction through men. Whether it be through selling our bodies to them, having them there for protection or a sense of safety, or having them there to help not feel so alone. We settled for less in order to get by, and we tend to think we NEED to continue to do that when we get clean. By surrounding myself and watching other women in recovery being independent and thrive, I was able to realize I could do that too.
Struggles in Early Recovery
I mean, I still consider myself in early recovery. I got high for over fifteen years and have only been clean for five. My main struggle was knowing my worth, accepting I AM worthy. I had done so much bad shit that it was hard for me to see the good. I still struggle with that today occasionally. I have gotten better, but I still get uncomfortable with compliments, praise, or giving myself credit. Luckily, I have and have had people that see the good in me, even when I can’t.
Advice for Women Just Starting to Get Sober
Honestly, just hold on and give yourself a break. As women, we tend to take on the world and be extremely hard on ourselves. I mean, we were all trained to take care of others from a young age. We needed to take care of so much: our kids, the house, our appearance, and our families. We took on the role of the “matriarch”, and that is okay, but we need to understand that our well being needs to be the priority. If we aren’t clean and working on ourselves, we are useless to everyone!
For Mothers Beginning Their Journey to Recovery from Addiction
I had to realize I am not a perfect mother. No one is. But I am a good mother and I love my son. The pain I put my son through due to my addiction was the HARDEST thing I have ever had to face. Trying to process my guilt, shame, and self-pity while trying to help him process his pain, abandonment, and neglect. Also, the balance of putting my recovery first for me and my son’s well-being first for him was a struggle. An example of that would be when I left my son in the custody of my mom for almost a year while I worked on my recovery. I was his mom. I took on all mom duties, but I did not jump into taking custody full-time even if I wanted to, until my support said I was ready. When I did take custody, we did a gradual transition. Selfishly, I wanted him right away. Selflessly, I needed to make sure we were ready.
A Message to Women in Early Recovery
A message I have for women in early recovery is something that I would say to myself in early recovery. Knowing what I know now, if I could go back and impart something on my past self while in early recovery, it is simple what I would say. I would tell myself that “you’re worth it. You are a strong woman, a good mother, daughter, sister, partner, friend, and employee. You’re allowed to process and to feel”.
Women’s Addiction Treatment Program at Aftermath Addiction Treatment Center
Men and women respond to addiction in different ways. Women have different needs than men when it comes to addiction and treatment for addiction. A drug and alcohol rehab program for women is aimed to address the gender specific needs to create a healing therapeutic environment. The Women’s Addiction Treatment Program at Aftermath Addiction Treatment Center does just that. Through individual and group therapy sessions, we will work to address the disease of addiction as well as underlying issues such as depression, anxiety, and trauma. Recovery from addiction is possible. Together we can rise from the ashes of our addiction and come back stronger than before.