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.

Wednesday, March 26, 2014

Doing What he was Taught

We once had a client whom I counseled frequently because of how he treated his mother.

This came to my attention when other clients said that during calls home he was very disrespectful toward her.

They reported that he’d scream at her in anger and call her an “f….ing bitch.”   He’d also tell her to go “F… herself.”

When I confronted him about this behavior he seemed surprised that I thought it was a big deal. He kind of shrugged if off.

I suggested he send flowers to make amends. Or maybe a card. I wanted to impress upon him that his behavior toward her wasn’t acceptable, that he should apologize.

He said he’d send a card but I don’t think he followed through.

Then a few days ago one of our staff had a conversation with his mother about an unresolved insurance matter. When I heard about that conversation - reportedly quite volatile -I understood how the client learned to communicate with profanity and anger.

It didn’t make his communication okay. But at least I now understand his attitude.