• The Year of the Dog - Movie Review

    Posted on April 6, 2023
    by Tom Horvath, PhD The Year of the Dog, a roughly 90-minute film, presents a fictional account of a mid-30s man and his early to middle change process out of alcohol problems. The story begins at the end of day 2. Matt has been released from jail, still experiencing withdrawal symptoms. Over the next several months he experiences various emotional setbacks, and several positive events he has worked to bring about. My interest in this film arose from the fact that the trailer showed Matt arguing forcefully with someone whom I suspected was his AA sponsor. Matt significantly ignores the sponsor’s advice. How open to alternative recovery approaches would this film be? This indie film, shot in Montana, impressively uses its resources to create a story I expect anyone dealing with alc...
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  • Addicted in Film: Movies We Love About the Habits We Hate (A Review)

    Posted on October 7, 2022
    Addicted in Film: Movies We Love About the Habits We Hate, by Ted Perkins A review by Tom Horvath, PhD www.addictedinfilm.com I have already provided advance praise for this book, and I am pleased to repeat it: [Addicted in Film: Movies We Love About the Habits We Hate] is a must-have if you or anyone you know has been touched by addictive problems. It's filled with enlightening stories about powerful films that could become a turning point for people. You might also be interested in: 14 Addiction and Recovery Movies to Add to Your Queue Perkins** reviews over two dozen addiction-related films (culled from over 100 that he considered including). The reviews are thorough and cover the main components of each film. He selected films that might help someone change. He exc...
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  • Netflix Miniseries Mentions Rational Recovery

    Posted on December 17, 2021
    by Tom Horvath, PhD In September 2021, Netflix released a seven-episode miniseries that mentions Rational Recovery (RR) as an alternative to Alcoholics Anonymous (AA) in episode II (starting in minute 46). Ironically, the mention of RR occurs in a very small (two-person) AA meeting. The pro-RR speaker is required to attend AA as part of parole, but he objects to AA’s powerlessness and God-centered approach. He prefers RR’s addictive voice recognition technique and the idea that he could take charge of his own behavior. In that AA meeting, he takes an extended moment to explain RR concepts and what he likes about them. Miniseries Mentions Rational Recovery - The Significance The significance of RR’s presence in Midnight Mass is that self-empowering approaches to resolving addictive ...
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  • Staying Sober in a “Let’s Grab Drinks” Culture

    Posted on January 25, 2019
    By the team at Practical Recovery Separating libations from social situations in American culture is about as easy as separating hassle from air travel.  A 2017 study published in the Journal of the American Medical Association found that alcohol consumption is on the rise in the United States, especially among women, older adults, ethnic minorities, and the socioeconomically disadvantaged.  The phrase, "Let's grab drinks," is such a staple of US culture that establishing a natural, rich, and fulfilling social life is a legitimate challenge for those who pass on the party scene.  For those who resist liquid luncheons, thirsty Thursdays, not-so-happy hours, and whiskey sours, it is important to have some ways of staying sober in a “let’s grab drinks” culture. People don’t drink for...
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  • The Best College Recovery Programs for Students in Every State

    Posted on November 28, 2018
    A collegiate recovery program can mean all the difference to a young person in recovery. Having a program like this available on campus means they do not have to choose between recovery and a higher education. It provides students with an avenue to stay committed to recovery, while focusing on school, and having a community of support in a setting where it’s stereotypically a place to overindulge in substances. We researched colleges across the country that understand this and have dedicated university resources to supporting students in recovery. This is far from all, but is a great showing of support for the recovery community in higher education. U.S. Universities with Recovery Programs for Students Alabama University of Alabama in Tuscaloosa, AL - The Collegiate Recovery and...
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  • Sober Things to Do in San Diego

    Posted on September 7, 2018
    Whether you're new to recovery or have been in at it for a while, it can be tricky finding new activities you can do sober. The good news is, you don't have to hole up in your house to protect your recovery; there are plenty of ways you can enjoy the sober side of San Diego! We've put together a list of some of the best San Diego activities you can do sober while the weather is still warm. Don't live in San Diego? You can still use this list for ideas in your area. San Diego Daytime Activities You Can Do Sober With so much sunshine all year in San Diego, you have to get outside and enjoy it by land and sea, urban neighborhoods and rural trails. There are hundreds of things to do in San Diego sober, here are just a few. 1. Enjoy the Food San Diego has made an international nam...
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  • 14 Addiction and Recovery Movies to Add to Your Queue Right Now!

    Posted on March 16, 2016
    Revised and expanded from original Jan. 23, 2015 post In early recovery, many people feel like they suddenly have a lot of free time that they aren’t sure how to fill. Movies can be a great way to stay entertained for a couple of hours… and there is no shortage of films that are recovery oriented, and even inspirational. Here are a few of our picks: 1. The Anonymous People This documentary explores how social stigma about addiction has kept people in recovery silent and anonymous, and how that needs to change. It features many real-life stories of people in recovery, including public figures such as former NBA basketball player Chris Herren and actress Kristen Johnston. You may also be interested in: 7 Books About Addiction and Recovery 2. The Shift In this film, Wayne Dye...
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  • Party-Time: Enjoying the Holiday Party Season... Sober

    Posted on July 1, 2015
    Originally posted 12/11/2013, revised for 2015 holidays Tips for making the holiday party season a sober success! It's no surprise - alcohol is a staple of the holiday season. This can prove to be a tough challenge for individuals in recovery but with a little planning and strategy, the holidays can be an enjoyable and successfully sober experience! Following is a list of suggestions for non-drinkers when they’re in social situations involving alcohol, as well as tips for friends and family so everyone can enjoy the party: For the Non-Drinker: BYO – bring your own nonalcoholic drinks to the function. (If it’s a big party, no one will notice.) Create your own cocktail – for instance, ask the bartender to mix cranberry juice, a splash of orange juice, club soda and add a pi...
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  • Tackling Boredom

    Posted on November 26, 2014
    by Devon Berkheiser, Psy.D. Boredom can be dangerous…. Having too much free time allows the mind to wander, and it can go to unhealthy places. While time for rest and relaxation is important, make sure that you have enough activity in your schedule to prevent you from feeling too bored. Here are some tips for how to do that, especially during the holidays when a lot of people have extra time off from their usual daily responsibilities. 1. Plan ahead—If you wait until the last minute to make plans, you risk other people being busy and/or unavailable. Instead, try to fill up your schedule in advance. Anticipate free time that you will have and schedule healthy activities for yourself ahead of time. Remember that too much isolation can be risky, so be sure to include some social acti...
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  • 3 Trusty Tips for Finding New Friends

    Posted on August 22, 2014
    Support is a crucial part of recovery. When times get tough, it is important to have supportive friends on whom you can rely. However, friends can be problematic when they trigger old addictive habits and behaviors. Often people in recovery need to build new friendships with people who are supportive of recovery and free from their own addictions. This can seem like a daunting task, especially if most of your social activities have involved drinking/using in the past. Here are 3 suggestions for finding new friends: Recovery meetings offer an opportunity to meet new friends who share similar goals. When attending meetings, say hello to other group members. Ask for phone numbers or invite somebody to go out for coffee. It may be scary to reach out to new people at first, but it gets...
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