Sometimes, women who are suffering from an addiction simply don’t relate to the recovery programs that are available to them. For a long time, addiction, particularly to alcohol, was considered “a man’s disease”. However, in recent years, it’s become clear that women use drugs and alcohol for different reasons, develop addictions for different reasons, finally decide to get treatment for different reasons than men, and recover differently.
Interestingly, since the early 1960’s, women have been fighting for their equality with men in the workplace, at home, in religious traditions, and in the community. And even though women have established their equality in many areas of life, they have different needs and vulnerabilities when it comes to receiving substance abuse treatment.
Women For Sobriety is a unique organization that was developed to treat addiction. It is an organization of women for women. They are not affiliated with any other recovery organization and stand on their own principles and philosophies. In fact, one of their fundamental principles is that of self-discovery. The organization encourages women to explore their patterns, habits, and provides tools to change any dysfunctional patterns that might continue to contribute to an addiction. WFS offers a variety of recovery tools to guide women in developing coping skills which focus on emotional growth, spiritual growth, self-esteem, and a healthy lifestyle. Their vision is to encourage all women in developing their personal growth and continued abstinence through a program they call the New Life Program.
New Life Program consists of 13 affirmations for recovering women
- I have a life-threatening problem that once had me.
I now take charge of my life and my well-being. I accept the responsibility.
- Negative thoughts destroy only myself.
My first conscious sober act is to reduce negativity in my life.
- Happiness is a habit I am developing.
Happiness is created, not waited for.
- Problems bother me only to the degree I permit.
I now better understand my problems. I do not permit problems to overwhelm me.
- I am what I think.
I am a capable, competent, caring, compassionate woman.
- Life can be ordinary or it can be great.
Greatness is mine by a conscious effort.
- Love can change the course of my world.
Caring is all-important.
- The fundamental object of life is emotional and spiritual growth.
Daily I put my life into a proper order, knowing which are the priorities.
- The past is gone forever.
No longer will I be victimized by the past. I am a new woman.
- All love given returns.
I am learning to know that I am loved.
- Enthusiasm is my daily exercise.
I treasure all moments of my New Life.
- I am a competent woman, and have much to give life.
This is what I am, and I shall know it always.
- I am responsible for myself and for my actions.
I am in charge of my mind, my thoughts, and my life.
Women are encouraged to spend 15 minutes each day reviewing all 13 affirmations and then use one throughout the day by consciously reflecting on it. The affirmations appear to tend to the emotional and psychological needs of women. Along these lines, the Substances Abuse and Mental Health Services Administration (SAMHSA) suggests that addiction treatment centers for women should consider a woman’s needs, including the severity of the addiction, and her financial situation. Studies show that once a woman enters an addiction treatment center, she is just as likely as a man to stay in treatment. However, there are factors that will keep her in treatment, such as the presence of childcare, a collaborative approach to treatment, and a supportive environment.
Women for Sobriety is an organization that can provide this kind of supportive environment and tend to the unique needs of women as they recover.
Reprinted with permission from Women for Sobriety, Inc. (WFS), PO Box 618, Quakertown, PA 18951, https://womenforsobriety.org. Copyrighted material or trademarks are the property of WFS; all rights reserved.