Wellbriety Column: What About Web-Therapy for the Addict?

Hello again my friends!  In this second article I have decided to discuss the topic of Web-Therapy also called E-Therapy for the addict.  Personally I am a bit conflicted on this issue since I have seen the benefits of one-on-one and group therapy for a person with substance abuse issues.  One of the terrible side effects of any addiction is isolation.  The addict pulls away from family and friends so that he or she does not have to face them or listen to arguments against using.  The longer the person is in their addiction the more isolated they usually become.
I went through this first hand with my son when he was using.  Whether he was home or on tour the gaps between phone calls became longer and longer.  Eventually the only way to actually communicate with him was through other people.  Of course, second hand news is ambiguous at best so I never really knew how he was.  As a parent the next step is to become concerned, and I did.  When he was home we used to refer to him as a vampire because he never came out during the day.  He would be up all night partying and hanging out with extremely suspicious characters.  Thankfully that behavior is all in the past.  But I digress.
Having people of your mindset around you and not feeling alone is a big part of recovery, so where does E-Therapy come in?  I believe it might have its place in the recovery process for someone who also attends AA, NA or other groups.  Maybe if they are traveling and can’t get to their group or if a day is just too busy. Another reason might be to hear a specific speaker online.  But this should be considered another “tool” in your toolbox that compliments your overall maintenance package.  There are some very good websites that offer meetings online – www.intherooms.com is one good one with great guest speakers.  There are also many online forums like www.addictiontribe.com and www.aa-intergroup.org.  If you google “online recovery support” you will find many ways to interact that way.
In conclusion, I do see a way for online therapy to be beneficial, but only when it is partnered with actual personal interaction groups and individual counseling.  I will add that I have done a huge amount of Life Coaching over the years completely online and it does work well.  I will continue to practice through my website and now offer Recovery Coaching as well.  If you know of someone who might benefit from this please contact me via my website email at denise@wellbrietycoaching.com.
For more information on Denise and addiction recovery:  www.wellbrietycoaching.com