The Meadows Blog

Spring is almost here. To celebrate this time of growth and renewal, we’re offering 25 percent off of all workshop registrations between now and March 31, 2016.

Workshops at the Rio Retreat Center at The Meadows are designed to help you understand your own needs, desires, emotions, habits, and everything else that makes you who you are. The more you know about yourself, the better equipped you are to engage in healthy relationships and have an improved sense of self.

A workshop can also be a cost-effective alternative when long-term treatment is not an option. Individuals who cannot be away from their work or families for an extended period of time can attend a workshop and work on sensitive issues.

What Sets Us Apart

Those who attend a workshop at our brand new Rio Retreat Center also have the benefit of enjoying our beautiful, serene, desert atmosphere and our state-of-the-art facilities. Attendees can also take part in many additional relaxing and healing activities at the end of each day, including expressive, arts, yoga, tai chi, acupuncture, live music, campfires, equine therapy, challenge courses and more. Three exquisite meals per day, prepared by our extraordinary chef, are included in the price of the workshop.

Limited Time Offer

To take advantage of this special offer, call our intake staff today at 800-244-4949.

In order to qualify for the discount you must enroll between February 19 and March 31, 2016.Registration is subject to availability. Our intake coordinators will work with you to ensure that attending a workshop is clinically appropriate for you. Lodging and travel expenses are not covered in the cost of the workshop. And, the deal applies only to workshop offered at The Rio Retreat Center at the Meadows.

We hope to see you soon at the Rio Retreat Center for a unique, empowering and healing experience.

Published in News & Announcements
Friday, 18 September 2015 00:00

A New Workshop at The Meadows

We tend to think of all bonds as being positive but, they are actually neutral. They can become positive, but they can also become negative. A betrayal bond is a type of negative bond that occurs when someone develops a strong and intense attachment to a person or an addictive process that is destructive to them.

The Meadows is excited to announce the addition of The Betrayal Bond: Breaking Free of Exploitive Relationships to its workshop offerings. The workshop was developed under the guidance of Dr. Patrick Carnes, internationally known sex addiction expert and a Senior Fellow at The Meadows, and is based on his groundbreaking book of the same name.

Some of the goals of this innovative, intensive workshop are to:

  • Help participants recognize, acknowledge and develop insights about situations, people and processes that are exploitive in nature.
  • Break through denial, identify signs that a betrayal bond exists, and grieve losses.
  • Explore the root causes of one’s involvement in relationships, situations and processes that are destructive to them.
  • Identify key elements that drive the cycle of abuse, betrayal of trust and power.
  • Teach participants about the psychodynamic and neurobiological concepts behind exploitive situations and relationships.

Each participant will be guided through the process of designing their own individualized path to recovery.

The Meadows Director of Workshops Jean Collins-Stuckert (LCSW, LISAC, CSAT) says “We are eager to offer this intensive program highlighting Dr. Carnes innovative model and providing relief for those people trapped in patterns that are so painful.”

Register Today

The first Betrayal Bond Workshop will take place November 30 – December 4, 2015. The hours each day are from approximately 8:30 a.m. to 4:30 p.m. MST; The schedule is flexible, accommodating the group process.

If you’d like to learn more, or if you’re interested in signing up for the workshop, please call The Meadows Intake Department at 800-244-4949.

Published in Workshops
Monday, 20 July 2015 00:00

Connection is the Key to Recovery

In a recent TED Talk, journalist and author Johann Hari suggests that “Everything you think you know about addiction is wrong.” He argues that most people in our society see addiction as a simple chemical dependency, when it is actually the result of a failure to connect ─ with family, with friends, with the community, with God, or with a larger sense of purpose.

His ideas are proving to be somewhat controversial in the recovery and addiction communities, not so much because of his basic premise, but because of his assertion that these ideas are “new.” (The studies he sites have been well known to psychologists and addiction professionals for years.) He does also seem to oversimplify, in some ways, what is often a very complicated and nuanced problem. And, he calls for the legalization of all recreational drugs as a possible solution, an idea which always sparks a strong debate.

In spite of some of the questionable aspects of his speech, at The Meadows, we do agree with his core principle: that disconnection─ with peers, with communities, with one’s sense of self and/or with a higher power ─ can play a major role in triggering addiction and other behavioral issues.

Interdependence

One of the most important goals we have for our patients at The Meadows is that they learn how to become interdependent. The Meadows Model, developed by Pia Mellody, names dependency as one the four core issues that must be addressed before a person can make a full recovery from addiction or mood disorders. Doing so requires one to reconnect with the child he or she once was. Being too dependent comes from not having needs and wants met as a child. Being anti-dependent comes from being shamed for having needs and wants as child.

Becoming interdependent means learning how to balance your own needs and wants with those of others. If you are interdependent, you are able to ask for help when you need it, help others when they make a reasonable request, and say “no” when necessary to prevent yourself from stretching yourself too thin and becoming resentful.

Without interdependence, there is no recovery. As an addict, the ability to rely on others for help and emotional support, and to give that help and support to others, is critical to staying sober. Without the tools to make and maintain these connections, recovery is impossible to sustain.

A Higher Power

Step 11 in the 12 Step Model for Recovery requires the addict to find a connection with a higher power:

“Sought through prayer and meditation to improve our conscious contact with God as we understand Him, praying only for knowledge of his will for us and the power to carry that out.”

In most cases, addicts have either always struggled to connect with God, their Higher Power, or their sense of purpose; or, in some way, they got disconnected along the way. Recovery is about getting connected or reconnected.

Jim Corrington, Director of The Meadows Outpatient Services, likes to use the analogy of an orange extension cord to explain:

An orange extension cord is useless and without purpose when it’s hanging on the wall. You have to plug it in to a source of power to give it potential. It does not reach its full potential until you plug something else into IT. So, too, an individual must stay plugged in to their source of power, AND, stay connected to others around them to reach sobriety, and with it, their full potential.

How to Reconnect

Addictions manifest in those areas where people are disconnected but seeking to connect. “Faulty wiring” caused by childhood trauma can make it difficult for them to connect with others or with their sense of purpose, so they end up trying to fill the gap with substances or unhealthy behaviors.

At The Meadows, we take a holistic approach to healing that helps patients to reconnect through their minds, bodies and spirits. Therapy sessions and workshops allow them to find out how they became disconnected, to work on ways to build better relationships with others, and to learn how to nurture themselves. Our new brain center helps them to address any dysregulation they may be experiencing in the brain and nervous system. And, physical activities like Yoga, Tai Chi, equine therapy and ropes courses, allow them to gain even deeper insights into themselves.

If you or a loved one are struggling with an addiction or a disorder and are seeking ways to reconnect, we can help. Contact us for more information.

Published in Treatment & Recovery

Understanding Karpman's Triangle

Marie Woods, LMFT, CSAT
Primary Therapist, Gentle Path at The Meadows

In relationships, individuals tend to develop a predictable pattern of acting and reacting to one another that they become accustomed to. This dynamic is sometimes referred to as their dance. This can often be a rather beautiful thing, as the dance metaphor implies, however, in relationships in which there is a great deal of conflict, these patterns can keep couples stuck in rather unhealthy patterns. Relationships in which these problematic patterns present are also often characterized by elements such as high reactivity, over control, manipulation, blaming, and other elements of dysfunction including addiction, for example.

The concept of the Karpman Triangle developed by Psychiatrist Stephen Karpman is a great illustration to help couples become more aware of this dynamic, and also learn how to change it. Within this concept, there are three primary roles that an individual may play. They include the victim/martyr, perpetrator/offender, and the rescuer/enabler. Individuals tend to play one role most predominately in their relationships with others, but in the process they often move around while typically still landing back where they started. The victim/martyr tends to have unrealistic expectations and avoids sharing their thoughts and feelings while blaming others. The perpetrator/offender tends to engage in a number of acting out behaviors that are offensive or harmful to others, or to themselves. The rescuer/enabler often engages in caretaking behaviors and sometimes serves as the pseudo-peacemaker in the relationship. Although these roles can play out in a variety of different ways, one of the most common dynamics is two individuals moving between victim and perpetrator typically followed at some point by one of them moving into the rescuer/enabler role to temporarily alleviate the problem.

In couples where sex addiction is present there is an obvious victim-perpetrator dynamic. The individual engaging in sexual acting out behaviors through lies, deception, and secrets, is operating in the role of the perpetrator/offender, and the partner is the victim of this behavior. Typically, when the partner discovers the sexual acting out behavior, they may stay in the victim role, and remain in a very painful place filled with constant self-loathing and blame. What is also common is that they can become aggressive and offensive towards the perpetrating partner and thus move into the perpetrator role (not to be confused with righteous anger). In this moment, the sex addict partner would be in the victim role. This movement from perpetrator to victim and vice versa can happen very quickly. In fact, individuals in a relationship can move back and forth between these roles numerous times in a matter of minutes. Because this exchange is exhausting, one person usually attempts to “fix” the situation. This can look like asking for “cheap forgiveness,” being overly compliant, or even showing extra affection despite their true feelings.

You might be wondering what is wrong with this attempt to repair the relationship hurts. The truth is that in healthier relationships where there is not a lot of underlying hurt and dysfunction it often does work because it offers temporary respite from the disagreement, and both individuals typically engage in the repairing at different times, so there is some balance. In more dysfunctional relationships, such as those where addiction exists, these superficial dynamics don’t really create lasting change. This is because they don’t really address the underlying problem that is often that each partner feels disrespected, unheard and misunderstood.

When presented with the Karpman’s Triangle, many individuals can quickly identify their primary and secondary roles. They can often see how the content of their disagreements in a relationship change, but the same patterns emerge. The difficult part is learning how to change that dynamic, or “get off the triangle”. For each role, there is a respective antidote that will most effectively allow an individual to step out of that role. For the victim/martyr, the most critical thing for them to do is to begin taking responsibility. This means identifying and owning their part in the problem. For the perpetrator/offender, they need to learn to negotiate. This means that they are not always right, and will need to work with others to create a situation where both people walk away satisfied. For the rescuer/enabler, their solution is in realizing that they have options, so it is their choice to try and fix a situation, or to step back and let each adult discern a solution for themselves. Real change tends to happen when individuals engage in these alternatives roles. Often, when they begin to see that the conflict is rarely about the topic at hand, they can begin to address deeper issues requiring more vulnerability and allowing them to move closer to true intimacy.

Contact Gentle Path at The Meadows Today

Every journey begins with one step. To learn more about the Gentle Path at The Meadows program or if you have an immediate need, please contact us or call 855-333-6076.

Published in Sexual Addiction
Wednesday, 18 February 2015 00:00

Fifty Shades of Grey

Whether you've read Fifty Shades of Grey or not, the fact remains there is a lot of buzz around the series. Women can’t seem to get enough of Christian Grey, but the question is, why? When you take a step back, you see a story about two people with their own insecurities and lack of self-worth begin a relationship with unhealthy expectations.

There have been arguments about why Christian Grey should be in jail or why Ana is a weak female - although I would argue Ana is strong in her own right. Ana, like many women, gets into a relationship with Christian under the pretense of saving him. But why is it Ana’s responsibility to save him?

In reality, it is not Ana’s responsibility to “save” him because Christian is the only one who can do that for himself. In the real world, many women expecting a “happy ending” are left feeling emotionally numb, shame, and struggle with a negative body image.

Please take a moment to read the whole "Fifty Shades of Grey" article and share with your friends and family.

We Can Help

At The Meadows, Arizona, our rehabilitation facility provides a safe, confidential and healing environment for sexual addiction treatment. Our expert treatment staff helps each client look at the core issues that caused the addiction to heal the underlying cause of the addiction.

Our reputation is unmatched in the treatment of sexual disorders, and our positive client outcomes shape our legacy. To learn more about The Meadows’ state-of-the-art Sexual Addiction Program, contact an Intake Coordinator at 800-244-4949.

Published in Sexual Addiction

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