If you are searching for a drug rehab for yourself or someone you love, you’re probably filled with questions about what type of treatment you should choose. You just want something that will work. There are plenty of options out there for treatment, and while it’s nice to have options, it can also be overwhelming.
You’ll notice that there is an increasing number of gender-specific treatment available today. On the surface, it may seem that the only reason this type of treatment is offered is to simply keep men and women separated, thus reducing distraction. While this is one of the benefits of gender-specific drug rehab, it isn’t the most important aspect of it.
What Does A Women’s Drug Rehab Offer?
Research has shown that women and men experience addiction differently. Their bodies are impacted by substance abuse differently, and society perceives female addicts differently than male addicts, particularly mothers. While addiction and trauma often go hand in hand for both men and women, women tend to be particularly vulnerable to abuse and exploitation in their active addiction, and are often survivors of childhood sexual trauma. Again, this is not exclusive to women, however it does present specific challenges that affect women and are best addressed within a treatment program that recognizes and understands the unique needs and challenges that women face.
This is what a women’s treatment center offers. It offers women a safe, accepting place to heal and come to understand their addiction and overcome it.
Unique Issues Of Women In Treatment
Because it is so common for women to have issues with self-esteem and self-worth, co-dependency, trauma and abuse, a women-only facility provides an atmosphere of safety and security. This is important, because in a coed facility, women often don’t feel safe and don’t feel okay about opening up and speaking their minds.
A women’s drug rehab isn’t just about treating addiction, it’s about treating women and allowing them the space to find their voices and develop the tools and skills they need to lead a satisfying life free from addiction and the devastation that accompanies it. Understanding that women experience addiction and recovery differently than men is an important component of women’s treatment. Here are some typical issues that may be addressed:
Guilt and Shame
Most addicts suffer from extreme guilt and shame, whether they be male or female. Ironically, guilt and shame as a result of abusing drugs and alcohol often becomes a huge barrier to getting help, and is also a frequent catalyst for relapse. Women in particular tend to struggle with lingering guilt and shame over not only their substance abuse, but many of the behaviors that go with it. They may also feel shame and guilt related to parenting or their ability to care for family. They may have issues around sexual behavior or feel that they let people down or didn’t meet their expectations.
Women frequently struggle to form a healthy self-identity. Often, they are so wrapped up in their roles as wife or girlfriend and mother that they don’t develop a real sense of who they are.
Trauma, Abuse and PTSD
Nearly half of all women addicts have reported suffering from trauma or PTSD. Often, this is a result of childhood physical, sexual or emotional abuse, neglect or exposure to violence. This often continues in one form or another into adulthood, and active addiction frequently exposes women to violence, exploitation and abuse.
Self-Worth and Self-Esteem
Low self-worth and self-esteem is a major contributing factor to things like substance abuse and other risky behaviors. Women who are able to build these up are less likely to relapse after treatment.
We live in a society that puts a tremendous amount of pressure on women of all ages to look a certain way. The desire to be thin is particularly pervasive, and it can be a contributing factor in drug addiction. Eating disorders often go hand in hand with addiction, and sometimes women in recovery get clean and sober but go on to struggle with eating disorders. Body image is something that should be addressed in treatment in order to facilitate a positive image, self-worth and healthy habits.
Co-Dependency and Self-Care
Long term recovery depends on a woman’s ability to take good care of herself. Getting too wrapped up in caring for others or co-dependent behavior often leads to relapse.
Women are often more prone to relapse than men. There are a variety of physiological, psychological and societal factors that contribute to this.
As you can see, a women’s drug rehab offers an environment and services that are solely dedicated to helping women succeed in their recovery. This level of individualized, female-centered care simply isn’t possible in a coed facility, no matter how good it is.
Getting Help For Addiction At Wayside House
Wayside House is a drug rehab for women, created by women. Our program offers residential addiction treatment in a supportive, serene environment and provides a variety of holistic treatments and therapies designed to help women recover, heal and grow. If you would like to learn more about Wayside House and what it has to offer, call 800-655-0817.