Lindsay Giving the Recovery Process a Bad Name? Let’s Reconsider

Lindsay Lohan admitted to having a glass of wine this week on her own reality TV show, “Lindsay.” Her Life Coach, A.J. Johnson, quit, after other allegations that she had fallen off the wagon following a recent trip to L.A.

Here we go again. Right?

The headlines in tabloids such as US Weekly are often ferocious and always sensational. If you glean those you might assume that Lohan, who has been in and out of rehab six times over the years, is a wild child who will never learn. She contributes to the stigma of addiction and sullies the name of the 12 Step recovery process.

However, if you read a little further you might find that although Lohan did relapse, she owned it and courageously admitted it. She also seems to understand that facing it, rather than denying it, is part of the healing process. She confessed: leaving her most recent Summer 2013 inpatient stay to go back to L.A. was challenging.

“Being in recovery and leaving a place where you’re in this little bubble and everything is safe around you, it’s really hard. I jumped right into a relationship where we weren’t on the same page,” she explained. “I wasn’t considering the fact that the person I was seeing does drink, and I had a glass of wine.”

Those in recovery know that environment plays a factor. Being around those who drink can be difficult. Environment can make it seem easy and acceptable to take one drink. Those in recovery also understand that the healing process is not a one-shot deal. Much like anything that requires commitment, it takes time, diligence and support. Relapse is around every corner, but relapse does not mean the end of your recovery. It also does not mean you have to start over. Lindsay’s words suggest that she too, understands this.

“I just had so much guilt,” she added. “It took me a bit to, like, finally just be, like, ‘Why am I holding this in? Yeah. F–k it. I screwed up. I screwed up, and that’s okay, but now what can I do so that it doesn’t happen again?’ That’s part of the process.”

“Yes, of course it’s jarring when you’ve relapsed and you’re trying to stay sober,” she continued. “That’s a scary thing.”

The tabloids aren’t snapping photos and writing headlines about celebrities who are grounded and secure in recovery. You’ll never read, “DOWNEY JR LEAVES SET GOES HOME TO FAMILY AS OTHERS GO TO BAR.” It isn’t sexy. But let’s recall that for Robert Downey, Jr., who is now several years in recovery – relapse was continuously a part of his process. It’s never easy and we shouldn’t be so quick to judge.

Instead of writing Lindsay Lohan off, let’s root for her.Let’s give her a little credit for her courage. When we make mistakes, they don’t appear on TMZ or the covers of supermarket line tabloids.

Take the First Step. Call Hemet Valley Recovery Center & Sage Retreat 866.273.0868 or visit our website. Hemet Valley Recovery Center Retreat offers a full continuum of care including: Acute Medical Detoxification, Rehabilitation, Residential, Partial Hospitalization and Recovery Residences.

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