Meridian Star

Local News

January 9, 2010

Best of Both Worlds Addiction Center for Women

(Continued)





Storms: Sort of, yes. People live in the house, and we provide services to them all day that really could be called outpatient. And sometimes people come and really don't live in the house, they just go to the outpatient services — but that's rare. Most of the time when people come they live in the house.



Graham: It's a seven week program, give or take. But there's nothing carved in stone, she kind of individualizes the treatment for that particular person. Normally it's a seven week program, but we've had people stay up to a year. We've had a lot of people stay six months.



Storms: We also have pets. We do a lot of things other people don't do, and one of them is we have pets that live there. We also take in pets and adopt them out. We're kind of a little mini-humane society out there.



Star: Are clients allowed to bring their own pets?



Storms: No, we tried that, but it didn't work. But we have people drop off animals there in the middle of the night, and we've also worked with the humane society. Sometimes we wake up and find a litter of kittens that people have left there and we adopt them out.

The girls also do outreach. We go to the Meridian Convalescent Home and do services there. We try to teach them how to give back starting while they're in treatment.



Star: How common is that, and how helpful is that, to use pets in treatment?



Storms: Yes, it helps, because alcoholics and addicts are very selfish. That's part of the disease. Everything revolves around me and my drink or my drug. So when they come in there, we start trying to help them to get out of themselves and at least take care of an animal to start with. And then we help with the people at the nursing home. That's getting out of that selfishness.

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