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Is Rehab “Pointless?”

In May of 2012 Lindsay Lohan voluntarily went into rehab. Prior to admission, she gave an interview to Piers Morgan in which she called court-ordered rehab “pointless” and “a joke.” In the same interview she explained she was entering rehab because she needed some time to just be with herself, free from the pressures of public life. Lohan’s comments seem contradictory, but they do raise important points. If you’re not fully committed to drug rehabilitation then yes, rehab may have a limited effect on your substance abuse problem. However, sometimes going to treatment is needed in order to develop that commitment. At the same time, a need for some time alone with yourself can help you control your addiction. Personal Involvement and Rehab Rehab is an uphill struggle if you resist treatment, which many addicts do when forced into treatment. This doesn’t, however, make rehab pointless. People sometimes experience the moment of clarity they need during drug rehabilitation, realizing they want the help being offered. Drug rehabilitation has a much higher success rate if you’re actively involved and committed to your own treatment. The old adage that the addict needs to want to quit is true; a personal commitment greatly improves treatment outcomes. As for court-ordered rehab, such programs have proved very successful despite Lohan’s dismissive attitudes. Many addicts long for help but lack the resources to seek assistance. Drug courts not only keep people out of jail, they also offer rehabilitation services that might otherwise be unavailable. Time Alone with Yourself Lohan explained she was entering rehab to spend some time alone with herself. For recovering addicts, time away from the pressures of work, relationships, and life stressors can be very beneficial. A growing desire for time spent with yourself can indicate the need for a “refresher” in rehab. The best rehab facilities offer opportunity to get back in touch with yourself and offer various modalities to do so: art, music, personal therapy, etc. It’s important to work through issues without the distractions of friends or family. Addiction affects people deeply, in ways you may not be able to communicate effectively to those around you. Some people make the mistake of assuming addicts only return to rehab during relapses. Preventative rehab is much more effective — you get the help you need to control your addiction before giving in to old habits and stressors. (Photo via Christopher Macsurak)

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