Saturday, November 09, 2013

The Stages of Recovery--Developmental Model

Out of the Woods is about what happens as we move through the stages of recovery, and specifically what happens—and is happening—after 15 or 20 or 25 years.
I’m not the first person to suggest that things change and that both life and recovery get different as time passes. There are several models of the stages of recovery. Over the next few posts I’ll share some of them with you. I hope that this will give you some perspective on what you have experienced or on what’s coming up as your recovery progresses.
Here is the first one, called the Developmental Model. See how much of this feels true for you or in what places you leapt forward or lagged back. 

Keep in mind that the stages can overlap if we have multiple addictions. You might be far ahead on your addiction to alcohol but just coming into Transition with food or Stabilization with relationships or codependency. This, of course, is what makes life in recovery so rich and so interesting.
The Developmental Model, identifies six stages that addicted individuals must undergo for long-term recovery: 
1.Transition, the period of time needed for the addicted individual to come to grips with the realization that safe use of alcohol or other drugs for them is not possible;

2.Stabilization, during which the chemically dependent person experiences physical withdrawal and other medical problems and learns how to separate from people, places and things that promote substance abuse;

3.Early recovery, when an individual faces the need to establish a chemical-free lifestyle and build relationships that support long-term recovery;

4.Middle recovery, seen as time for the development of a balanced lifestyle where repairing past damage is important;

5.Late recovery, during which the individual identifies and changes mistaken beliefs about oneself, others and the world that caused or promoted irrational thinking; and

6.Maintenance, the lifelong process of continued growth, development, and managing routine life problems. 

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