Recovery Connections

John Schwary is CEO of Transitional Living Communities, an 850-bed recovery program he founded in Mesa, Arizona January 9, 1992, when he had a year sober. He's in his 28th year of recovery.

In these posts, he views life mostly through the lenses of recovery. While the blog is factual, he often disguises events and people to protect anonymity.

Saturday, April 13, 2013

Am I Worth It?

Following surgery nine years ago I received a bill for about $36,000, which my insurance paid. Over the years I’ve spent thousands on dental work. And I’ve had surgery because of accidents. I’ve always felt it’s a good investment to spend money on my physical well-being.

I guess that's why, in my naiveté, I'm sometimes surprised when addicts object to the costs of recovery or treatment. For many, it's almost a knee-jerk reaction. Even though it's not normally coming out of their pocket and is usually covered by someone else's insurance.

We'll hear comments like "those SOBs are making money hand over fist." Or "I thought TLC was a nonprofit." The comments go on and on.

While not sure about the psychology or thinking behind this attitude I know if they were bleeding to death and someone saved their life cost would be the last question.

Yet when addicts piss their life away on drugs and alcohol and highly trained professionals help them change they often question the value of the help. Even though the intervention and counseling could save their lives.

Sometimes I hear this from clients with a sense of entitlement. Some seem to believe the world owes them a recovery program. The world should be grateful they're getting sober. And someone else should pay for and be responsible for it.

After all, they're giving up their best friend. Isn't that enough? I’m still scratching my head.