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Showing posts from June, 2014

When substance use disorder disrupts your field of dreams

By Stephen C. Schultz Over the years I have had too many conversations with families about substance abuse. I have sat with parents brought to tears because addiction has ruined relationships and tarnished trust. I have discussed substance use disorder with teens that maintain a center of the universe attitude and are convinced they can use drugs now, only to recover later in life and be fine. I have witnessed the slow death that comes about because of a cirrhotic liver and the spur of the moment death brought about by substance induced suicide.  I have compassionately changed the bed sheets of a middle aged man in the throes of a medical detox who was trying desperately to maintain some semblance of dignity. In each of these cases, families and parents never once thought to themselves; “I sure hope that someone in our family struggles with addiction!” In fact, most families romanticize the Field of Dreams scenario. Unfortunately, addiction is no respecter of p

Three signs outpatient therapy for your teen may not be enough

By Stephen C. Schultz If you are the parent of a teen, chances are you have a pretty good idea when things are amiss. In fact, for most parents, they have that "parents Intuition" when thoughts, attitudes and behaviors are headed in an unhealthy direction. The problem is, we as parents don’t want to think that our teen would make such decisions. As parents, when we are faced with our child’s behavior, often we rationalize the situation with thoughts and statements like; “When I was their age, I struggled with some of the same things. It’s not that big of a deal!” “Oh…it’s just hormones, she’ll be fine.” “All teens go through that. He’ll grow out of it.” As a parent, how do we know when the problems are more serious or if our teens are simply going through the normal adolescent stages of development? How do we really know if it is a bigger problem than we realize? There is no parental “Owner’s Manual” or “Recipe” for raising kids.  When we suspect t