“Through therapy, you can heal the pain and fear underlying your abuse…”
Dealing with substance abuse is of particular concern to members of gay and lesbian communities throughout the country. There are common characteristics among all individuals struggling with addiction; however, gay men and lesbians face additional difficulties that can lead to addiction. Social taboos and judgments, hurtful comments, the need to hide one’s identity to avoid loss of family, friends or church community – are a few examples of the emotional and relational pressures that lead gays and lesbians to self-medicate or to seek companionship and connection in bars.
Given the statistics, which reflect an exceptionally high incidence of abuse among gays and lesbians, it is important to recognize the risk factors and to know that there are effective alternatives for dealing with the pressures faced in this community.
As a goal, freedom from alcohol and drugs requires as much strength and courage on the part of the gay community as it does from the individual dealing with addiction. If you are a friend or loved one of a lesbian or gay man who is abusing, your understanding and support can be a life-line to sobriety.
PFLAG, 12-Step programs and support groups are available to individuals struggling with addiction and their loved ones. Psychotherapy with an individual who understands the addictive process, the stages of recovery and the realities of an alternative lifestyle is vital to achieving sobriety. Through therapy, you can heal the pain and fear underlying your abuse, and learn effective tools for living free from addiction.
#GayActivists , #GayCelebrity , #GayCommunity , #GayFashion , #GayMagazine , #GayRights
Evelyn Wertenberger, Ph.D.