Gooden Center
A residential drug treatment center for men located in Pasadena, CA. The Gooden Center is a proud member of the National Association of Addiction Treatment Providers (NAATP).

(626) 356-0078
191 North El Molino Avenue Pasadena, CA 91101 US

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Archive for the ‘Addiction Awareness’ Category

What are “The Stages of Changes” in Addiction?

Posted on: March 8th, 2019 by The Gooden Center No Comments
What are “the Stages of Changes” in Addiction?

Most people that have gone through recovery understand that quitting an addiction is not something that happens immediately when you give up drinking or using drugs. Abstinence is only the first step in a very long process that requires lots of different physical, emotional and spiritual changes. Most recovery programs identify six main stages of change that can help bring about permanent sobriety.

The first stage of change is the “pre-contemplation stage” where the addict may still be in denial and not yet understand all the negative consequences of their actions. They may soon move on to the “contemplation stage” where they will start to become aware of all the problems that their substance abuse is causing and think about quitting but not yet fully commit to the idea. The third stage is “preparation” in which the individual will finally make the decision to change and begin planning the steps for their recovery.

During stage four or the “action” phase the person will start taking steps toward change by entering detox or rehab where they will learn how to choose new behaviors and develop life skills. Once they complete rehab they enter the “maintentance” stage where they will work on their long-term sobriety plan and focus on relapse prevention tactics. The final stage is “termination” where the individual accepts their new image as a sober person and appreciates their new healthy lifestyle.

The stages of change model was developed as a way to explain the typical steps that a person in recovery has to go through until they are able to feel comfortable in their abstinence. Recovery is different for everyone and they may go through each stage at their own pace or even move backward and forward through each phase until they are ready to be completely sober.

“Beautiful Boy” Movie Show Family Struggling with Addiction

Posted on: October 23rd, 2018 by The Gooden Center No Comments

Struggling with Addiction

Drug addiction can be devastating for families, especially when young people develop addictions early on in their teenage years. The new film “Beautiful Boy” is inspired by the real life story of a man who was addicted to meth as a teenager but was ultimate able to recover after many ups and downs. It is based on the books written by Nic Sheff and his father about his experiences with addiction, his many recoveries and relapses.

In the film, Nic’s father David attempts to support and help his son through recovery in spite of his many setbacks while also helping raise the rest of his children. The director of the film, Felix Van Groeningen, wanted to create a realistic depiction of drug addiction and how it affects the addict and the family supporting them. He was committed to being true to the story without trying to add in a happy “Hollywood” ending.

The father and son on whom the film was based were amazed to see their own life played out on screen and were able to recognize how grateful they are to survive such a terrible ordeal. The real life Nic is now eight years sober but still takes measures to manage his addiction as well as his mental health problems including bipolar disorder and depression. He checks in with his doctor every few months to make sure he is still on track and doing well.

The film “Beautiful Boy” is now playing in theatres and it is a moving story of how a family’s love helped a struggling teenage boy fight his crippling addiction to drugs. Although it is darkly realistic, it can also be an inspiring image of someone who was able to overcome their illnesses and reconnect with their loved ones.

What to Expect at Al Anon Meeting

Posted on: July 20th, 2018 by The Gooden Center No Comments

Al Anon Meeting

You may be familiar with Alcoholics Anonymous meetings because you have been to one, someone close to you attends meetings or you’ve seen it on television. Most people have an idea what an AA meeting is like, however not many people know about Al-Anon or Al-Ateen. Al‑Anon is a  support program for people whose lives have been affected by someone else’s alcohol abuse. Alcoholism is known a “family disease” in which several members of a family can be affected by one persons habits.

Like  AA groups, these meetings are a safe and welcoming place where you can connect and share your experiences with others that are going through a similar thing with their loved one. Parents, spouses, siblings and close friends of alcoholics attend Al-Anon to open up about how alcoholism has affected their lives.  Members can share their frustrations, negative past experiences and even share some healthy coping mechanisms, strengths and positive experiences that can give other members a sense of hope.

Like AA, the first time you go to a meeting you can share and talk to the group but you are not required to.Members of the meeting will then share their thoughts, things they are experiencing or talk about their progress in recovery. Everything that is said and shared in the meetings is anonymous and each member of the group is expected to maintain confidentiality. Most people find that sharing with the group can be cathartic and helpful even if their loved one has chosen to not get help.

Attendees can form friendships and more importantly a sense of support, knowing that they are not the only ones dealing with something so difficult like alcohol abuse. Many feel reluctant to attend a first meetings, but this Al-Anon is solely intended to offer help you and your family may have been needing for years.

 

Substance Abuse Among Culinary Chefs

Posted on: June 12th, 2018 by The Gooden Center No Comments

Substance Abuse in Chefs

While cooking and creating dishes can be a fulfilling passion for most chefs, it can also be a stressful and high pressure industry. Many culinary chefs, especially students in training and chefs in high end restaurants, end up turning to substance abuse as a way to cope with the pressure that they experience in the kitchen. In an environment surrounded by plenty of alcohol as well as mental and emotional tension, it is not surprising that chefs end up self-medicating on the job.

The food industry has been known to have a party reputation as staff members often share shots and drinks after hours and even sometimes on the clock. Hospitality industry workers actually make up a significant portion of the people receiving addiction treatment in rehab programs. Staying sober or even drinking moderately can be especially challenging in a restaurant environment and chefs are often hit the hardest by addiction.

Chefs and other restaurant employees are working in a place where drinking on the job is normal and often encouraged. They may come into contact with so many people who have addiction issues that they often lose their sense of what typical behavior is. Other drugs are also an issue in the restaurant industry as chefs and staff members may use cocaine or other stimulants to help them get through a long shift.

Although the restaurant industry is associated with a certain lifestyle it is possible for chefs in recovery to find others who are in a similar situation. Having other restaurant employees around who don’t drink or use drugs can be beneficial for those who are trying to commit to being sober. It can be challenging for chefs to cope with stress and temptation in a restaurant environment but with enough support they can make healthier choices.

Top Netflix Movies/TV Shows About Addiction

Posted on: May 9th, 2018 by The Gooden Center No Comments

Netflix

There is more content than ever in the media that deals realistically with issues of addiction and depicts the struggles of recovery, relapse and the sometimes harrowing experiences of substance abuse. Netflix offers some hard-hitting dramas, documentaries and even comedies that discuss addiction and include characters that are relatable protagonists who are vulnerable to their own relationship to alcohol or drugs. The most effective stories of addiction in the media can show both the redemption of recovery and the dangers of falling into the pattern of abuse. These are some of the best movies and TV shows available on Netflix that deal with addiction.

Heaven Knows What

Ben and Joshua Safdie directed this dark drama centered around junkies surviving on the streets of New York City. This is a remarkable film in that it stars a real life former heroin addict discovered by the directors and many of her own experiences were used as inspiration for the story including her relationship with her boyfriend Ilya who died of an overdose in Central Park. Although at times painful to watch because of the subject matter, the gritty realism makes this a memorable depiction of addiction.

White Girl

This movie follows the story of a young college student who becomes entangled in substance abuse and the NY drug world after falling in love with a cocaine dealer. Cocaine begins to take over her life as she descends deeper into addiction and struggles to make enough money selling drugs to get her boyfriend out of jail. The film also takes a hard look at issues of race and privilege that can dictate who experiences more repercussions for using and selling drugs.

Flaked

Will Arnett co-created, wrote and directed this Netflix comedy/drama series which largely draws on his own experiences with alcoholism and divorce while living in Venice, CA. The show depicts the main characters regularly attending AA meetings throughout the series and coping with their sometimes tenuous relationship with sobriety. Arnett maintains some mystery about the main character’s past which draws you into his story and struggles with alcohol.

Too Young to Die

This documentary series focuses on the stories of beloved celebrities whose lives were cut short, many of them due to addiction and overdose. Episodes of the series discuss stars like Kurt Cobain, Philip Seymour Hoffman, John Belushi and Heath Ledger who were all unable to escape their drug abuse until it eventually turned fatal.