Alcoholism, also known as “alcohol dependence”, is a disabling addictive disorder. In earlier stages of dependence it is characterized by problems that occur as a result of drinking that include embarrassment over actions while drinking, loss of control while under the influence and a preoccupation with drinking activities.
In the latter, acute stages it is characterized by compulsive and uncontrolled consumption of alcohol despite its negative effects on the drinker’s health, relationships, and social standing. Problems in the latter stages are a threat to the happiness and well being of the individual and his family, coworkers and the community as a whole.
Alcoholism is the drinker’s inability to control compulsive drinking, despite awareness of its harm to his health and those around him. Alcohol detoxification may be needed before treatment; our Medical Director is available for assessment.
At Last Door we treat alcoholism and addiction as one disorder – often, alcoholics also are addicted to other drugs, most often benzodiazepines and pain medications. In any case the problems that stem from drug abuse and alcohol abuse are similar.
Donny: My wife at the time asked that I leave. She thoughts my kids would be better off without me in their lives. And that’s the lie that alcohol tells you, that people are better off without you and they don’t care about you. I didn’t know that until I got clean, but at the time it seemed like a good idea. At the time my vision was blurred, right? I wound up homeless and uh, I went to detox and they told me about the Last Door in detox. I was pretty skeptical because everyone in detox is telling me that “I don’t know if you want to go there, it’s a six month program and stuff, and they’re pretty hard and stuff and they, you know, and the people that stay there actually stay clean.” Hahahaha, it was like “Oooh?” And I actually thought twice about it because of that. But I’m sure glad I didn’t. It was a bit of a struggle with me at first, I had a bit of a rough time, but I think that everyone has that when they have such big change in their life. And you know, I walked through it, and uh, through the counseling and the outside help that they refer you to I was more than willing to take that outside help on parenting, and extra counseling for other personal issues and stuff. It just um, you know, helped me blossom and grow as a person. The Last Door program taught me how to succeed and exceed in my life. I’m a musician too and I currently have been on tour around the world and stuff and recorded albums done all sorts of stuff and you know, stuff that I’d never dream of. I was on tour and we went up North. I didn’t know if I was wearing a big “my name’s Don, I’m an alcoholic” sign but I seemed to attract people who were looking for help. And I had answers for them. And you know, I am really proud that I get to be that person today. Through the process I was allowed to visit my children, or my children were allowed to visit me. My youngest boy took his first steps in the Last Door with a bunch of my friends around cheering him on and they let me have sleepovers with my children and stuff and it was paramount to rebuilding that relationship with my kids and helping me gain some self-esteem to be a better father and stuff. That’s what I like to tell a lot of people too. If you want to make a change in the world, be a good dad, because that changed me. I thought I wasn’t a good dad and thought I was going to end up the way my dad treated me. You know, the cycle, I broke the cycle here. There’s a huge change. My brothers and sisters can see and some of my old friends and colleagues that I’ve worked with over the years, fellow musicians and stuff, totally see it. And I don’t know, my kids are young enough to know the difference but I think they get a pretty good dad out of the deal.
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