The Meadows Blog

Friday, 01 April 2011 20:00

Celebrity Addiction – Part 2

(This is part two of a two part blog post. If you would like to read part one please go here: Celebrity Addiction Part 1)

This raises the question: Has the media gone too far? Since television and movies became mainstream in America, teens have tried to emulate the speech, dress, and behavior of their favorite celebrities. And now, scientists have even found a correlation between celebrity worship and depression/anxiety. Does depression lead to addiction, or does addiction lead to depression? Or does it matter? The bottom line: A generation of teenagers feels entitled to become famous. For what they will become famous has become irrelevant. Teens believe that becoming famous is a cure-all for all of life's challenges. Our society is raising a generation of narcissists whose only sense of self rises around entitlement and fame. Healthy relationships will be replaced with illusory relationships that lack intimacy and real connection. Teens will continue to seek temporary relief in substance abuse and celebrity worship to ward off the pain that normal adolescence brings. This practice of "numbing" is dangerous and will result in a generation that is unable to function in the real world.

Another difficulty many adolescents face today is eating disorders. Television, Hollywood, magazines, the Internet, and the fashion industry portray slender women much more often than women with normal body types. Children and teens then develop distorted images of what a body should be. Once these idolized perceptions are accepted as truth, thought distortions may develop, which can lead adolescents to self-destructive behaviors such as eating disorders, self-injury, and excessive exercise.

How can we prevent our teens from idolizing tragic celebrity figures of fantasy and deception? How can we reduce substance abuse and eating disorders among teens? Self-esteem is a major buzzword. Low self-esteem can increase the odds that a teen will look to numb or suppress discomfort, frustration, or pain. When a child is comfortable in his own skin, he can reach inward for well-being and strength rather than relying on outside sources to dull the senses. Having an open dialogue with your teens, without judgment or criticism, allows them to feel more comfortable discussing substance abuse, peer pressure, and sex. They will feel heard and understood, which will allow them to trust you with their deepest and darkest demons. Otherwise, they may look for validation elsewhere, joining groups or gangs where drugs and alcohol are the norm.

Another solution to this growing epidemic might be getting to know our neighbors. Creating deeper bonds within our own circles might alleviate the need to search for outside validation.

There are numerous causes of addiction, such as trauma, a genetic predisposition, peer pressure, a divorce, or a significant loss in one's family. Celebrity addiction is not as dangerous as drug or alcohol addiction, but it is another way that teens avoid what is really going on in life. It can prevent or delay teens from forming identities; rather, they opt to emulate a false self based on a favorite idol. Such a teen will never develop a true core self. If your teen shows warning signs, such as isolation, eating changes, depression, excessive sleep, or new acting-out behaviors, seek professional help. It could be a sign of addiction or an eating disorder. A professional can assess if there is a serious problem.

We all want to be loved for who we are, not for who we wish we could be. Being aware of the signs of celebrity addiction is a proactive way to curb negative behaviors before permanent damage occurs.

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For the 7th year, The Meadows is pleased to co-sponsor the Annual International Trauma Conference - Psychological Trauma: Neuroscience, Attachment, and Therapeutic Interventions. This groundbreaking conference will be held in Boston, Massachusetts on Wednesday, May 18, 2011 to Saturday, May 21, 2011. This conference brings together leaders in the field of trauma to examine cutting-edge treatment interventions for various trauma-based symptoms. For more information or to register for the 22nd Annual International Trauma Conference go to: http://www.regonline.com/builder/site/Default.aspx?eventid=947224

Published in Blog
Sunday, 27 March 2011 20:00

Introducing Michael Cooter, MSSW, LCSW

The Meadows is pleased to introduce Michael Cooter, MSSW, LCSW, as its new Coordinator of Counseling Services. Michael has extensive experience working in the fields of addiction and trauma. He served as a primary, workshop, and weekend/evening counselor from 2002 to 2006 at The Meadows. He also co-facilitated PIT training with Pia Mellody. After leaving The Meadows, he had the opportunity to work for a Department of Defense contractor; while treating PTSD in active duty members of our armed forces, he used The Meadows' Model as a framework. Michael also has worked with individuals and families in his private practice in Phoenix.

Note from Michael:

I am very excited to be returning to The Meadows as Coordinator of Counseling Services. I have a strong belief in The Meadows' program and its efficacy in helping people heal their wounds. I believe that developmental immaturity drives all addictions and compulsive behaviors. It is with great pleasure that I do this work every day with a skilled team of clinicians.

As Coordinator of Counseling Services, I have the opportunity to work with primary and family counselors, as well as directly with patients. Another key component of my position is to ensure communication with referring professionals. As a prior referent of The Meadows, I am well-aware of the importance of thorough communication between counseling staff and referent.

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For immediate release:
Feb. 14, 2011
Wickenburg, Arizona

THE MEADOWS NAMES JERRY BORISKIN, PhD AS SENIOR FELLOW

The Meadows is pleased to announce the naming of Jerry Boriskin, PhD, CAS, as Senior Fellow.

Dr. Boriskin is an author, lecturer, and clinician widely known for his ground breaking work in the fields of trauma, PTSD, and addictive disorders. He was a pioneer in extending the continuum of care and developed two extended residential treatment programs for co-occurring disorders. A passionate advocate for integrated treatment, he possessed a vision that predated the ongoing movement toward specialized and integrated treatment for co-occurring disorders, particularly those involving trauma.

In addition to his groundbreaking work with The Meadows, Dr. Boriskin is the author of “PTSD and Addiction: A Practical Guide for Clinicians and Counselors.” and co-authored, “At Wit’s End: What Families Need to Know When A Loved One is Diagnosed with Addiction and Mental Illness.”

Jim Dredge, CEO of The Meadows, said, "we are fortunate indeed to have Dr. Boriskin as a member of The Meadows' team. Thanks to his hard work and dedication, The Meadows is at the forefront of the treatment of co-occurring disorders and trauma."

The Meadows, with rehab treatment centers in Arizona and Texas, has been a leader in the treatment of addiction, trauma and recovery since 1976.

Contact: Nancy Koplow, Director Of Marketing, The Meadows. nkoplow@themeadows.org  Phone: 800-632-3697

Dr. Boriskin is an author, lecturer, and clinician with expertise in trauma, PTSD, and addictive disorders. He began his career in 1979 when PTSD emerged as a diagnosis. He transitioned to the private sector in the mid-1980s, working with sexual abuse survivors and addicts. He is a licensed psychologist and addiction specialist who recently resumed working with warriors at the V.A. of Northern California. He has authored PTSD and Addiction: A Practical Guide for Clinicians and Counselors and co-authored At Wit's End: What Families Need to Know When A Loved One is Diagnosed with Addiction and Mental Illness.

Published in Blog

For immediate release:
Jan. 31, 2011
Wickenburg, Arizona

THE MEADOWS HONORS JOHN BRADSHAW FOR A LIFETIME OF WORK IN THE FIELDS OF ADDICTION AND RECOVERY.

On January 22, 2011, The Meadows, America's premier center for the treatment of addiction and trauma, honored senior fellow John Bradshaw by dedicating a lecture hall in his name. Panels lining the walls of the John Bradshaw Lecture Hall illustrate the important contributions made by this extraordinary individual to the fields of addiction, trauma and family systems.

Leading the dedication ceremony was The Meadows CEO, Jim Dredge, who said, "John Bradshaw has touched the lives of millions of people around the world through his ground-breaking work and teachings. We are honored to have him as a colleague... and to know him as a friend."

After the dedication Mr. Bradshaw, surrounded by The Meadows staff, guests and patients shared stories of his own personal journey in recovery.

John Bradshaw is a celebrated educator, counselor, motivational speaker, theologian, author and one of the leading figures in the fields of addiction, recovery, family systems and the concept of toxic shame. He was recently selected by his peers as one of the "100 most influential writers on emotional health in the 20th Century." Over the years, Mr. Bradshaw has written several New York Times bestselling books, including, "Homecoming: Reclaiming and Championing Your Inner Child," "Creating Love" and "Healing The Shame
That Binds You."

Mr. Bradshaw has been closely associated with The Meadows for over 10 years, giving insights to patients, speaking at alumni retreats and lecturing to mental health professionals at their numerous workshops and seminars.

The Meadows, with treatment centers in Arizona and Texas, has been an innovator and leader in the fields of addiction and trauma treatment since 1976.

Contact: Nancy Koplow, Director Of Marketing, The Meadows. nkoplow@themeadows.org

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