All That Glitters Is Not Gold

chocolate coin partly open

I completely admit to picking out which luxury rehab I wanted to go to like I was picking out a piece of jewelry. My decision was based purely on appearance. I choose whichever one looked the most luxurious, the one that looked the most like a mansion, or in other words had the most “bling”. The first one I went to for my cocaine addiction was on the west coast in Malibu, California because I knew that was where the celebrities went to rehab. Even when I left their rehab with my own personal copy of the book that the owner of the luxury rehab in Malibu wrote, I know you are probably shocked to hear how I somehow still managed to relapse (pardon my sarcasm). At least I learned an important lesson about luxury rehab . . . that going to a rehab where celebrities go is probably not a good idea, because the celebrities you see on the news keep going back to rehab over and over again and never seem to get better.

I was 24 years at this point in my life and I’d never felt normal a day in my life. I made a half-hearted attempt at committing suicide, but unlike Whitney Houston, my parents found me in my bathtub before I drowned. This experience led me to a new luxury rehab on the east coast in Tequesta, Florida (that also looked just like the large mansion rehab I had gone to in Malibu), but supposedly they had a new futuristic approach based on something called DBT something or other and was a good option for suicidal patients. After I left there and relapsed, I wanted to commit suicide for real! At this point, I learned another lesson regarding luxury rehab and that is all that glitters is not gold and size really doesn’t matter.

My father’s attorney recommended a luxury rehab in Palm Beach that heard about from a client. I liked that they were a holistic drug rehab center that treated the whole person, and not just the physical symptoms of addiction. I entered my third attempt at treatment completely skeptical because of my past failures at the mansion-size luxury rehabs. What I found was a very different type of treatment program that immediately clicked with me from the very start. They used a unique personalized approach to treatment that provided me with valuable insights about my addiction and why I kept relapsing each time after leaving rehab. For the first time, I started to piece together the crazier points in my life and realized that they formed a pattern of cyclical depression and self-loathing that led me to self-medicate myself with cocaine.

If you’re going to be successful in recovery, you have to first be willing to give up control, or whatever illusion of control you think you have. Once you do this, you will gain more control over yourself than you can possibly imagine. It’s not about ego; it’s about self-preservation and listening to those who can help. It’s about recognizing the damage your addiction has caused and working to repair it; it’s about self-awareness, decency, and positive mental health, and for me, it was about letting go of my preconceived notions of what is best and how you can’t judge a book entirely by its cover . . . especially if the rehab’s owner wants to sell you his book as part of your treatment!


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