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Drunk Driving

"Drunk Driving, How to handle it? "
copyright 2011, all rights reserved

by Toby Rice Drews
author of the "Getting Them Sober" books

Suggestions for the courts -- If you (or someone you know) works for the court system, and if you (or that person) has any "say" in what process will be followed -- when persons are arrested for drunk driving or other nonviolent alcohol-related offense------ please read this------ a. There is an out-of-print pamphlet that Hazelden published, years ago. It can still be bought on the internet, new or used. It's called "The alcoholic woman's mad mad world of denial and mind games". It is NOT "about woman alcoholics". It is 'about' an understandably frustrated husband who is married to a still-drinking alcoholic woman, who, after years of his begging her to get help----she goes "to a therapist". She spends literally years 'looking into her root causes' for her alcoholic drinking. She still drinks. She gets sicker and sicker from her alcoholism. Her husband again implores her to 'get help'. She says to him, "what do you mean, 'get help'? I'm GETTING help." ...... i.e., "Get off my back". b. What does this have to do with the court system? When an arrested alcoholic person is in front of the judge, the court is literally, in the "catbird seat" --- it has "clout" -- leverage. The court, at that time, is in a perfect place to be able to SUCCESSFULLY intervene------- to force the person to get real treatment. To save that person's life and the sanity of that person's family. Too often, the court, instead, refers the person to an evaluator who knows nothing about alcoholism. Who SAYS, "oh, I know all about alcoholism". And who then refers the person to 'counseling' ---- one-on-one with a mental-health counselor who spends much time going into what may be "the root cause' of the alcoholic drinking. Attendance at A.A. is seen as "a good idea"------but not as crucial. The arrested person then goes to that counselor for the alloted weeks or months....and 99% of the time, still drinks during that time (maybe reduces the level of drinking before the sessions, so he does not 'appear drunk')........and then returns to the same ---or more often, a later, stage of alcoholism-------when "it's all over". He then often tries to make sure that he's just not caught driving drunk again. Or--------moves to another area where the laws are more lenient. Or takes cabs to the bar. Or nothing. c. Mental-health counseling almost never works to get someone sober. A.A.-oriented treatment centers know this. They see their job as two-fold -- a. crack through the denial b. get the alcoholic to daily A.A. meetings...and impart to them that they will likely die or go insane if they do not go to A.A. on a regular basis, when they leave treatment. THIS is what works. d. Once the alcoholic is in recovery, and his brain is starting to clear of toxins, a counselor can then play an invaluable role -- (1.) helping the recovering alcoholic to unearth and get rid of, resentments and fears that can unconsciously make him cut back on A.A. meetings, which often leads to relapse (2.) help the recovering alcoholic and his or her family, to start to heal old issues--- especially when these are played-out patterns from childhood that infect the present family situation (3.) If there are other psychiatric problems, in addition to the alcoholism -- help the recovering person discover and face them, so that his or her chances to stay sober without relapse, greatly increase. Please print this out and give copies to persons who may be in positions to make a difference.

Recovery Communications, Inc. • P.O. Box 19910 • Baltimore, MD 21211

Phone: 410-243-8352 • Fax: 410-243-8558 • e-mail:
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