84 episodes

The Addicted Mind Podcast is about understanding addiction from a research and treatment perspective. We will dive into what drives the addictive process, explore the latest research on addiction, and talk about the latest addiction treatment options. We will also explore what recovery from addiction looks like from a variety of different people. If you or someone you know is struggling with addiction then The Addicted Mind Podcast can help.

The Addicted Mind Podcast Duane Osterlind, LMFT

    • Mental Health

The Addicted Mind Podcast is about understanding addiction from a research and treatment perspective. We will dive into what drives the addictive process, explore the latest research on addiction, and talk about the latest addiction treatment options. We will also explore what recovery from addiction looks like from a variety of different people. If you or someone you know is struggling with addiction then The Addicted Mind Podcast can help.

    84: The Rising Cost of Rehab with German Lopez

    84: The Rising Cost of Rehab with German Lopez

    Today, our guest is German Lopez. German a writer and he is currently doing a project called The Rehab Racket, which involves looking into addiction treatment, exploring some of the issues associated with it, and bringing them to light. This challenges the addiction treatment community to provide the very best care for people who are suffering from addictions.
     
    German is a senior correspondent at Vox.com. Before, he was writing mostly about drug policy and criminal justice issues, but for the past few months, his focus has been on The Rehab Racket project, which was created to investigate the cost and quality of the treatment that is available for addictions in the United States. At this point, German has received more than 1100 submissions from patients and their families.
    Episode Link>>>>www.theaddictedmind.com/84
    For the last few years, German has been researching and writing about the opioid epidemic. He saw that policy-makers had been making an effort to put more money into addiction treatment, which is something that activists had been calling for, for quite some time. This information initially seemed contradictory to him because addiction is hard to treat, and there was a general understanding out there that much of the available treatment was inadequate, not evidence-based, and not really helping a lot of people. 
     
    German wanted to make sure that the money being poured into addiction treatment was indeed going towards something worthwhile and effective. So he started talking to families, to ascertain whether or not he was onto something. This is how The Rehab Racket project came about.
     
    German believes that more money should be poured into addiction treatment but, at the same time, more should be done to ensure that the treatment is good. His hope is that The Rehab Racket project will serve to ensure that addiction treatment is motivated to be good by someone holding it accountable.
     
    It seems that the idea that people who use drugs and go through addiction treatment are under-represented overall in the conversation, has changed in recent years, particularly with the opioid epidemic. This is what motivated German to want to hear directly from the affected people. Also, to truly reflect how well addiction treatment is working, he needed to reach out to as many people as possible. This is why there is a survey form on German's website for people who have gone through the system to fill out, talk about their addiction treatment, and help shed a light on this part of the health-care system.
     
    Hearing from people who found a treatment that worked for their addiction, and got them into recovery, who had spent thousands, and sometimes even tens or hundreds of thousands of dollars on that treatment was alarming for German. The American health insurance system is supposed to protect people from these catastrophic costs, and in a lot of cases, the insurance is not doing that due to the many barriers that are involved.
     
    Mostly, the cost for the treatment of addiction is very high and there are no guarantees that it will be successful, because the treatment, and the various medications for addiction, do not work the same for everyone. Also, the medications that have worked successfully for addictions are not offered at all treatment centers.
     
    For a long time, society neglected this particular area of health care. There were initially no places that provided treatment for addictions, so that forced all the assistance to come from community groups, like AA and other twelve-step groups.
    Treatment for addiction is still a relatively young field, it takes good research to make a good change, and we are still learning about the most effective ways to help people who are struggling with addictions. However, many treatment facilities don't track their outcomes and many of the surveys that are done around ad

    • 35 min
    83: Changing the Relationship with You Through Recovery

    83: Changing the Relationship with You Through Recovery

    Today, we have a great conversation with Jen Sugermeyer. She shares her story of addiction and recovery, and she talks to us about overcoming her shame and her fear of reaching out, and how she managed to change her relationship with herself. 
    Jen grew up on the East Coast and she currently lives in Dallas, Texas. 
    Jen's addiction started at the age of twelve, with an eating disorder. At the time, she did not realize that she was paving the way for her brain to become accustomed to satisfying her reward system. 
    Episode Link>>>>www.theaddictedmind.com/83
    When she reached her mid-thirties, she was an alcoholic and she had been trying to get sober for more than a decade. Looking back, Jen could see her pattern of gaining control of one addiction, and then that leading to another one. 
    Jen also saw that she was accustomed to living two distinctly different lives. She was working in Corporate America at the time, and she did not talk openly about her eating disorder with anyone. She seemed to be a happy-go-lucky person, and she always came across as loving and caring, but she had a very dark side that she kept hidden. And as much as she didn't want to acknowledge her dark side, that part of her was slowly winning the battle and taking over.
    Jen was living an extremely chaotic life, running in and out of jails and hospitals, and then straight into work. She was trying to keep the two parts of herself separate and it was eating her up inside. She even became suicidal towards the end, from living such an unmanageable lifestyle. She kept trying to fix her symptoms when she was the problem. She couldn't get a hold on her addictions, and she knew that at some point, she would have to come to terms with the fact that she needed to work on herself. 
    Although Jen really wanted people close to her, she could never get too close to anyone because she only wanted people to see one part of who she was. And she was working in Corporate America, where there was a stigma around having any kind of mental health issue. So there was a constant battle raging within her between the two aspects of herself, and she felt very alone because there was nobody that she felt she could talk to. It was around this time that she became suicidal because it seemed the easiest way out. 
    It was only when she was about twenty-five that Jen admitted that she had an addiction problem. And it took at least another five years before she could admit to being an alcoholic, even though she had to acknowledge before that, that there were things about her behavior that didn't line up. From the age of twenty-five, she was in and out of AA for about ten years.
    Jen had to learn to love herself. This became abundantly clear to her when the man she was dating told her so and it was his words that finally launched her into sobriety. This was the first time that she understood what she needed to do. 
    Coming out and talking about everything has been an interesting road for Jen. She has been well-received and she's found the experience more liberating than she imagined. However, she realizes that there's still a lot of work to be done. Although Jen gave herself an entire year to work on her recovery, she knows that will have to continue working on herself every day, after that. Because, since she was twelve, she has never really felt her emotions and she has always been suppressing her feelings.
    About five years ago, Jen finally started admitting to her alcoholism. She got sober and began wrapping her head around the recovery process. Although it took a long time for her to find her sobriety, she's okay with it because she doesn't think that she would be the person she is today if she had found her sobriety at the age of eighteen.
    There is a whole lot of forgiving that goes with recovery. Not just for others, but yourself as well. Jen knows that she would not have

    • 28 min
    82: Being Present with Faye Mandell

    82: Being Present with Faye Mandell

    Today, Dr. Faye Mandell is with us to talk about spirituality, connection, and how being in the present moment and looking at our reality from a quantum perspective can help us find more joy and happiness. 

    • 29 min
    81: Creating Habits That Improve Your Quality of Life with Steve Rio

    81: Creating Habits That Improve Your Quality of Life with Steve Rio

    Steve Rio, Founder of the Nature of Work is our guest today. Today, we’re talking about work and recovery and what affects the recovery process. In a quest to live our best lives, we want Steve to share his take on how we can optimize our lives and live in a way that fulfills us.

    • 30 min
    80: Finding Honesty and Recovery Beyond the Filtered Life with Emily Lynn Paulson

    80: Finding Honesty and Recovery Beyond the Filtered Life with Emily Lynn Paulson

    Recovery from addiction is a particularly challenging process for women, who are also mothers, to go through. Emily Lynn Paulson, author of the book, Highlight Real: Finding Honesty and Recovery Beyond the Filtered Life, is our guest for today's show. She shares the story of her addiction and her journey along the path of the process of recovery and healing. 

    • 27 min
    79: Memoir of a Delinquent Girlhood with Maureen Stanton

    79: Memoir of a Delinquent Girlhood with Maureen Stanton

    Today's guest is Maureen Stanton, the author of the memoir, Body Leaping Backwards, Memoir of a Delinquent Girlhood. 
     
    Maureen spent about forty years writing her book but she kept avoiding taking it to the point of getting published because there was shame in it for her. So she only started writing the book seriously in 2014, once her dad had passed away. He had done the very best he could for her so she wouldn't have wanted him to feel ashamed of her. 
    Episode Link>>www.theaddictedmind.com/79
    Maureen wanted to tell the story of what happened with her so long ago because she believes that it is still relevant and that it will still resonate with teenagers today, even though the specifics are different. 
     
    Maureen's teenage years were a time of great anxiousness, sadness, and confusion. She felt that she wanted to disappear. She had feelings of self-doubt and she lacked self-confidence to the point of self-loathing. So she turned to drugs to self-medicate. She started using Angel Dust, a dissociative anesthetic that was a very prominent drug in the 1970s. It numbed her, helped her to escape from the emotional pain that she felt as a teenager, and allowed her to stop thinking about her insecurities and sadness.
     
    Maureen is now in her late 50s. She kept all her diaries from before she was using, and from the time when she began feeling a sense of despair and started doing drugs. Reading through the diaries as an adult, she was able to remember just how she had felt then, so she was able to convey that very clearly in her book.
    A lot of kids start using drugs or drinking during their fraught teenage years while crossing the bridge over the treacherous terrain from childhood to adulthood. Children who are suffering from psychic pain, and don't have guidance, are more likely to start using drugs and alcohol.
     
    Maureen started with alcohol and marijuana. Her friend's older brother then introduced her to Angel Dust. As it was smoked in a joint, it seemed to Maureen to be very similar to marijuana, and there were no warnings at the time about the dangers of using this terrible drug. There was still a part of her, however, that realized that it would cause damage to her brain cells. 
     
    Mauren believes that essential loneliness and discomfort are felt by teenagers because they don't yet know who they are.
     
    Maureen feels shame about her terrible, delinquent behavior while she was using drugs. She does, however, feel extremely fortunate that there was no lasting harm, that she knows of, done to anyone.
     
    Who we are, as individuals, is defined by our passions and our interests. Maureen gave all of that up for getting high. She progressively stopped doing the things she loved as she slid deeper into her addiction. So although the drugs helped her escape and provided some relief, she continued to erase herself. She eventually became so empty and despairing that she knew she had to ask for help. Her mother arranged for her to see a counselor and Maureen paid for her counseling herself with the money she earned working for a gas station.
     
    Maureen believes that the culture of a society impresses itself on teenagers in a way that they don't necessarily understand. In the 1970's the American culture was a bit lost, and there was a sense of despair, due to immoral leadership, the Vietnam war, and Watergate, and Maureen's journey seemed to mirror that to some extent.
    Looking back, Maureen realizes that some of the things she had to face were very hard, but she wanted to give something back and touch the hearts and minds of other teenagers. Her book is a public confession and she has written it in the hope of helping other people.

    • 30 min

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