Loved Ones of Alcoholics

Cirque Lodge hosts an Addiction Professionals Lunch

So grateful for Eial from Cirque Lodge for hosting such an incredible lunch today and bringing together some of the best professionals in the addiction field!

I am ever so grateful for being a part of community that is deeply passionate about bringing hope and healing to those affected by and/or struggling with addiction.

Each of us provides a different level of care with unique specialties. For more information, feel free to check out the websites below:

Cirque Lodge- Eial Fishman (Drug & Alcohol Rehab)

Chris Bennett Interventions- Chris Bennett, Jennifer Tarzia, Tom Dearborn (Interventions & Follow Up Care)

True Life Center for Wellbeing- Elissa Frazao (Drug, Alcohol, and Mental Health Intensive Outpatient Program)

Dr. Mary Spease- (Outpatient: Drug/Alcohol Addiction, Loved ones affected by another’s substance/alcohol use or sexually compulsive behaviors)

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During a session last week, a client and I began exploring her previous relationship with a HigherPower/God and how she lost that connection. As we talked about how she drifted from this source of support, she shared all the ways in which life had increasingly become more difficult to navigate, emotions seemed insurmountable, unhealthy dynamics in her marriage intensified, and she felt so alone.  However, we started to talk about the benefit of this type of relationship and the love and support that is waiting for her. She discussed her beliefs and desire to reconnect and ways to recultivate this relationship that was once a larger part of her life.

The very next session I asked her how her past week had been and she said, “I’ve been thanking you almost everyday” as she was so grateful I had initiated the conversation about her spiritual beliefs. What happened next was so incredible and heart warming to witness…her face lit up as she shared that she has been more intentional about staying in communication with her Higher Power and started to experience peace, clarity, and a greater ability to acknowledge and work through core triggers.

This is just a small reminder of the power of believing in something bigger than ourselves and the beauty of knowing we are not alone…EVER. There is something greater working for us and through us if we can get out of our own way.

There is no need to try and will your way through difficulties, there is always support available if you look up, reach out to a friend or family member, listen to your own intuition, are working with professionals, etc. Your Higher Power is ready and willing to give you what you need when you need it, if you can believe you are worth receiving it.

Recovery: Casa Palmera & Dr. Mary Spease

Had a wonderful lunch last week with Ernie Georggin from Casa Palmera. So thankful to know someone dedicated to connecting those in need with recovery. Our conversation was another reminder of how impactful and healing the support of a recovery community can be.

If you are ready to take that leap of faith and ask for help, you can view Casa Palmera’s website here:

If you are the loved one of an addict/alcoholic, your heart most likely needs healing too. You are not alone and healing is possible. Feel free to contact me and I’d be happy to discuss how to best support you in this journey:


CURRENT GROUP: Healing Co-Dependent & Destructive Relationship Patterns

I’m currently facilitating a women’s group through Julieann Myers’ Center for Healthy Change in Del Mar. This group provides support for women struggling with codependent and destructive relationships patterns who want to learn how to better take care of themselves and foster healthy connections with others.  The women I’ve had the honor of working with are wonderful and it is incredible to witness their ability to challenge themselves and support one another through the process.  This particular group runs for 12 weeks and is limited to 6 women to help create a greater sense of safety and intimacy.  Below is a more in depth description for the group and subsequent details:

     Do you find yourself in relationships where your primary role is that of rescuer, supporter, confidante, or enabler of someone else’s dysfunction? Do you place a lower priority on your needs while being preoccupied with the needs of others? Are your most important relationships more about meeting other’s needs before meeting your own? Join Dr. Mary Spease, relationship therapist, to learn how to change co-dependent/enmeshed relationship patterns into interdependent/healthy relationships where you can get your needs met too!

     Learn how to take care of your own needs and develop a healthier relationship with yourself and other important people in your life. This small group format allows women to share and learn in a supportive, safe environment. Space is limited to six women. The group will be held on Thursday evenings from 6:45 to 8:00 p.m. in Del Mar.  

     Cost per group is 75.00 for individuals committing to a three month participation period up-front. For those electing to attend on a month to month basis, cost is $90.00 per session.  If you’re interested in joining, please feel free to contact me at or call 760-634-1704.

Dr. Mary Spease Women’s Group: Healing Co-Dependent & Destructive Relationship Patterns

Bayside Marin at the Hyatt Regency Mission Bay

This evening I attended a wonderful event hosted by Bayside Marin and was able to spend some time with Christina Hammet from Sierra Tucson, Chris Bennett from Chris Bennett Interventions, Concetta Mantinan from San Diego Student Recovery, Kay White from Villa Kali Ma, Sean Firtel from West Coast Recovery Centers, Bill Lane from Bill Lane & Associates, McKenzie Phillips from Pasadena Recovery Center, and many more incredible professionals in the addiction field.

It is such an honor to be in the presence of so many individuals who are dedicated to helping others and truly understand the value of recovery and how it can change people’s lives in ways one never thought imaginable.

For more information about any of these clinicians/programs, please feel free to view their website:

Bayside Marin

Sierra Tucson

Chris Bennett Interventions

San Diego Student Recovery

Villa Kali Ma

West Coast Recovery Centers

Bill Lane & Associates

Pasadena Recovery Center


Independent Contractor for Julieann Myers’ Center for Healthy Change:

Julieann and I have known one another for some time now and I have always admired and respected her, not only as a therapist but as a person. Throughout the past year, we have been exploring ways to work together and collaborate in our passion for helping others.

Recently, I have joined her lovely practice (Center for Healthy Change) as an independent contractor. I feel so blessed to be a part of the team as they have all be so welcoming! I’m looking forward to supporting her practice and serving new clients!

If you would like to know more about Center for Healthy Change and/or what services I will be providing, please feel free to view our website:

Center for Healthy Change

The Canyon with Foundations Recovery Network

It was an incredible night at George’s at the Cove where I had the pleasure of attending a dinner hosted by Jillian McCarney from Foundations Recovery Network. Jillian is lovely, extremely passionate about recovery, and fantastic at creating a sense of community in this field.

She introduced us to Kathleen Bigsby, CEO of The Canyon in Malibu, which is one of FRN’s residential programs. The Canyon provides support and therapy to individuals struggling with addiction, depression, anxiety, bipolar disorder, secondary eating issues, psychological trauma, and personality disorders. They offer individualized treatment provided by a staff who have no less than a master’s degree. As Kathleen described the program, it was readily apparent that their approach is one motivated by integrity and what is best for the client and their families.

Here are a few highlights of what The Canyon provides:

-Intervention services, sober escort and travel support
-Clinically supervised detox
-Comprehensive addiction assessment and psychiatric evaluation
-Customized care plan focused on the unique needs of each individual
-Medication management directed by collaborating medical experts
-Diverse educational groups
-Eye Movement Desensitization and Reprocessing (EMDR)
-Cognitive Behavioral Therapy
-Dialectical Behavior Therapy
-Relapse prevention and continuing care planning
-Family therapy, including monthly family weekend events

For more information, please view their website:

Foundations Recovery Network

Chris Bennett Interventions

My holiday weekend ended with a wonderful lunch with Chris Bennett, the CEO and Founder of Chris Bennett Interventions.

Chris is a passionately driven professional who is truly dedicated to supporting those he works with and helping them find the recovery and life they deserve. He and his team are committed to providing comprehensive care as they conduct clinical assessments to help develop the most effective intervention strategy as well as provide ongoing care for a minimum of 6 months once your loved one has entered treatment.

Chris Bennett Interventions provides support for more than just addictions. Listed below are the teams various areas of speciality:

-Mental Health Intervention including but not limited to schizophrenia, schizo-affective disorder, delusional disorders, active psychosis, bi-polar disorder, major depressive disorder, personality disorders and anxiety disorders.
-Substance Abuse and Dependency
-Problem Gambling
-Eating Disorders
-Co-Occurring Disorders
-Failure to Launch
-Problematic Lifestyles and Behavior

If you are a therapist or a family member who would like more information, please view their website:

Chris Bennett Interventions

Center for Healthy Change: Julieann Myers

Julieann Myers is a dear friend and colleague of mine as well as the owner/founder of ‘Center for Healthy Change’ located in Del Mar. I had the pleasure of spending some time with her yesterday and left with renewed admiration regarding her passion for helping others.

She along with a few other clinicians provide individual, couples, and group therapy specializing in addictions, trauma, EMDR, athletic performance enhancement, ADHD, mindfulness, life/career coaching, and eating disorders. In addition, they provide intensive aftercare programming for individuals and their family members who have completed inpatient treatment as well as continuing care groups for SierraTucson/CRC alumni and family.

Julieann is an extremely compassionate and effective clinician who I have often referred to given the unwavering positive reviews received from my clients. If you would like to know more about Center for Healthy Change, feel free to view their website:

Center for Healthy Change

Women’s Association for Addiction Treatment (WAAT): San Diego

Today I had the pleasure of attending a meeting for the Women’s Association for Addiction Treatment hosted by Jennifer Tarzia from Center For Discovery. It was wonderful to meet other women in the field of addiction and come together in our passion for helping those in recovery. Women who work in private practice, intensive outpatient/partial hospitalization/residential programs, or own sober living homes were in attendance representing the various levels of care that are available to individuals in recovery.

For anyone who understands alcoholism or addiction, then you know that the addict/alcoholic can’t do it alone and often seek support through therapy, 12-step meetings, and sponsorship. The same is true for the professionals who work with them, we can’t do it alone. Therefore, WAAT has provided a great forum in which women in the world of addiction can gather and share their respective work and how they are uniquely of service to clients.  By doing so, it allows us to continually enhance our knowledge and understanding of addiction and recovery as well as further develop our skill set.  In addition, it provides an opportunity for each of us to foster trusted relationships in which to utilize and collaborate with when a client is in need of adjunctive therapies or support.

If you are a woman in the addition field and are interested in connecting with others who share your passion for this work, I encourage you to learn more about WAAT.

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