Before our son Alex entered Outreach, we did not know where our family was going. Alex’s substance use and behavior had turned from bad to worse. We were scared, confused and anxious, and knew we had to take action. “Alex needs help that you can’t give him,” his siblings told us, and when I asked my husband what we were going to do, he said, “Pray and find a great rehab.”
So on a stormy afternoon the day before Hurricane Sandy, we traveled over the wind-blown Verrazano Bridge to check out a rehab in Staten Island, who referred us to a rehab in Brooklyn, and they in turn referred us to Outreach House. We knew Outreach was our choice after speaking with the staff for three hours on intake night a few months later. A dark weather period was transformed into a new beginning.
Fourteen months, seven days, two Christmases, fifty-seven weekly letters, countless therapy sessions and many multi-family meetings later, Alex persisted, worked hard on his problems, confronted many challenges, and took us on a journey through our issues as parents and a family, as well.
Outreach uses an approach called the “Parallel Process” that supports your child’s recovery by following the policies and rules and encouraging your child to complete the program. Their talented group of addiction and recovery professionals is passionate about what they do and compassionate about the residents and families they serve, with just the right measure of love thrown in. From the directors, counselors, and nursing staff, to the cooks, they are an amazing and dedicated group!
The residents at Outreach become your child’s family, as well. They shared and supported Alex during his stay and we are thankful to them for being his family when we could not be here. For all the parents in this community, the weekly support groups became a special time to share our experiences and support one another through the ups and downs. We couldn’t have done it without all of them either.
Our family is unbelievably proud of Alex and what he accomplished through Outreach. It was the beginning of a new chapter of living a healthy life in recovery.
More than three years after his Outreach graduation, Alex is now entering his senior year of college, majoring in public relations. He has a bright future ahead, filled with opportunity and hope and a foundation that began with Outreach’s uniquely positioned service to help and support adolescents. As parents, we could not be more pleased and grateful.