What I Have Learned in the HAM Programs, the High Gain Project, and the Alcoholics Anonymous Experience
By Dr OLGA ANDREI
In this essay I compare four approaches to recovering from alcoholism, approaches that I have been living, and highlight what each seeks to accomplish: The first is the Hospital experience, the second is the Morgue experience, the third is the High Gain Project, and the fourth takes up the Alcoholics Anonymous meetings.
I have learned from all of them on how alcoholism must be viewed from all of these vantage points, as we all seek to find a solution to the terrible societal problems caused by the excessive use of alcohol and other drugs.
Personally, I have learned how to implement my decision (made during my Metro Court date January 22, 2014) to stop drinking.
Fortunately I was sentenced to become seriously involved in the four programs above, and sine that date, I have not had even one drop of alcohol. Sadly, some in AA state that it is ok to drink but not to exceed one drink. But I argue that even a thimble full of alcohol can start a drinking binge, a fact which I have had seen in my own case.
What I learned from the Hospital experience was excellent, as we were exposed to brain biochemistry and such neuro-transmitters as Glutamine and Gaba. These two major neurotransmitters are greatly affected by even a small amount alcohol,, Creatimg an over-abundance of Gaba will slow our motor abilities, too often leading to horrific consequences– Dr. Troy, aptly demonstrated how neurotransmitters are linked to alcohol and drugs usage.
The second Program, the Morgue, at first I thought it was highly objectionable because of the way corpses were handled and treated, blood was spilled at my feet. The smell was overwhelming and I was in complete shock for two days after viewing the scene at the Morgue. I now realize that I was privileged to be able to see the reality of the autopsy and to have the forensic actually introduce me to the idea of Glutamine and Gaba balance.
At the Hospital Program, Dr. Troy followed up in depth on the electro-chemical system in the human body. He also analyezd the physical consequences of the speeding automotive impact if seae belts are not used for safety.
In the High Gain Project I attend every week group and private meetings with Sarah Wisdom (who is highly disciplined, and suggests substitution of activities and talks on major topics in our lives, such as (a) the why of drinking and (b) how to change that dynamic by substitute useful activiites to improve society. I especially appreciated Dennis Kenmore’s interesting explanation on how power and control drives us to do the wrong things in life, especially when we should DRIVE Sober, and have a meaningful life. The High Gain Project is a “boot camp” that helps us acknowledge the damages of drugs and alcohol in the human body. He supplements his lectures with interactive discussions and media.
The 100 + Alcoholic Anonymous meetings creates what I call “a non-alcoholic social group” where all addicts share their experiences in trying to stay sober. The AA people are in a sense wrong to encourage any consumption of alcohol at all. They are teaching us that we are forever alcoholics. I personally consider myself an alcoholic in long-term recovery, which is not the same idea that the fellowship is articulating.
In these programs I have learned how to be responsible for my actions, be of service and be dependable. I also have a daily blog on the national Movement against alcohol and drugs on http://olgalazin.wordpress.com a Blog dedicated to eradicate this societal problem.
In Conclusion, drawing from these four vantage points, I can clearly see a fifth path, or approach, based on preventive nutrition.
Rationality does not exist for the alcoholic because even one thimble of alcoholic drink can twist the alcoholic’s brain. No program alone can solve this problem, but if the fifth approach were expanded by Dr. Troy that further help us solve this long-term mental-health disease. It is my considered opinion that alcohol is a dangerous chemical neurotransmitter that should be banned.
The The Hospital Program (with expanded focus on nutrition to help prevent cravings, the Morgue Program, the High Gain Program, and the AA meetings should be introduced to youth before they drive, not only after they drive drunk and effectively “ruin their life.”
Dr Olga Andrei
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