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Getting the Most Out of This Site

Personal trainers and the like are terrific—when they’re accessible. Unfortunately, individual counseling is still a rarity with CRAFT, despite its proven effectiveness. Allies in Recovery was created to bridge that gap. In this post, founder and CEO Dominique Simon-Levine outlines the many forms of training, education, and guidance that we offer on this website. We hope it helps you find the support you need.

The idea for this post began with a question from Allies member Ava:

This is a great resource, and helpful. One thing I would like to see are resources for family members who want individual support. Are there counselors out there who are familiar with this approach? I don’t find it helpful when someone I am consulting tells me to just turn my back on my son. I would like to have a resource for myself, someone who can listen and advise, with an up-to-date understanding of addiction, CRAFT, etc.

CRAFT counselors are few and far between

Considering how much CRAFT has been studied and how thoroughly its effectiveness has been documented, professional knowledge about it remains sparse across the country. One reason for this is that insurance doesn’t reimburse therapy for family members—only for the identified patient, the one directly suffering from SUD.

Dr. Robert J. Meyers, who developed the approach at the University of New Mexico, does provide a list of CRAFT-certified providers. As you’ll see, it’s not a long list. And yet there’s overwhelming evidence that families need trained help to navigate the difficulties of life with someone experiencing substance use disorder (SUD).

We built Allies in Recovery to promote CRAFT and to make it accessible to everyone. I understand that a website isn’t a substitute for solid, one-on-one therapy, but there are many ways it can still be quite useful.

How to get the most out of this site

Here are some key things to bear in mind as you explore what we offer:

  1. As you just did, ask questions. Reach out to others on the site who are using CRAFT in their lives. Remember that your privacy’s assured: we use internal display names that you choose in order to keep you anonymous.
  2. Posts in the Allies in Recovery Discussion Blog begin with questions from members facing a wide variety of issues. These questions are answered by our staff of highly experienced, CRAFT-trained writers and counselors. Other members share their own thoughts and experiences in the comments on these posts. It’s a very supportive and informative resource. I’m certain there will be posts you can relate to.
  3. Find a therapist you like and tell him or her about this website. Ask if they’d be willing to work through some or all of the eLearning Modules and Key Observation exercises together with you.
  4. Allies also has a variety of online support groups, led by experts in CRAFT. These groups can help you learn skills and practice better self-care, and connect you with a broad community of members applying CRAFT to their own family situations.

Unlike many other approaches to drug and alcohol use, CRAFT does not rely on dramatic (often traumatic) interventions, shaming, or allowing drug or alcohol users to hit “rock bottom.” Neither the science nor the real-word data support the idea of turning your back on a Loved One. People with addiction need to know they are loved, and that that those closest to them believe in their potential to recover and are ready to walk with them. They need to be treated with dignity. They also need help discovering what forms of support are available. Meanwhile, you need to be better informed, trained, and supported, so you can react in ways that unblock the situation and allow your Loved One to move towards recovery.

CRAFT is the only approach that focuses on preparing families to address every situation that can arise. It’s based on training, practice, and the sharing of knowledge, all of which we focus on providing at Allies.

In an ideal world, everyone with a Loved One suffering from SUD would have a CRAFT-trained therapist they could visit as needed. But in the meantime, there’s Allies in Recovery, with personalized guidance, solid CRAFT-based teaching, and opportunities to connect with both professionals and other family members in situations like your own. We’re hopeful that it can help you as you support your Loved One’s journey to recovery.



In your comments, please show respect for each other and do not give advice. Please consider that your choice of words has the power to reduce stigma and change opinions (ie, "person struggling with substance use" vs. "addict", "use" vs. "abuse"...)