My addiction to alcohol took me to the depths of despair both physically and mentally and although my health deteriorated to the point of hospitalisation with liver failure, despite numerous attempts to stop drinking, I never succeeded on my own. Having had a successful career, my own home, car and a good standard of living, I lost all of this due to my alcoholism. When I became critically ill my Alcohol Support Worker recommended a period of time in a residential rehabilitation centre and suggested Open Minds in Wrexham, as it had a very good success rate in helping people beat their addiction. Desperate for help, I decided to embark upon a six month period of treatment and I entered the Open Minds Program on the 1st August 2011.
When I first arrived I was immediately put on detoxification from alcohol and my medical needs were addressed by the in-house Nurse Practitioner. I was anxious, nervous and worried, not knowing what to expect, but the welcome that I received from the staff, Counsellors and the other clients in Open Minds soon put me at ease. The counselling team all have personal experience of addiction and recovery and this really helped me to feel that they understood what I was experiencing.
Over the following weeks I settled into the residential accommodation, made new friends, attended group and one-to-one therapy and counselling sessions at the day centre. My anxiety levels began to decrease, my confidence and self-esteem started to improve and I addressed many of the problem areas in my life that had contributed to my descent into alcoholism.
During the six months I spent in Open Minds I worked very hard on myself as I desperately wanted to turn my life around and make a complete new start. I graduated from treatment on the 16th January 2012 with new life skills, a new way of living my life and on the road to recovery from alcoholism.
Presently, I am doing voluntary work and a part-time college course and my life has completely changed in all aspects, from what it was a year ago. I have an enormous of amount of gratitude to Open Minds for giving me this great opportunity to change my life and give me hope and encouragement for a much brighter future, without alcohol in my life. I have a new outlook on life now and if I had not come into treatment when I did I most certainly would not be here to tell my story. I would definitely recommend rehabilitation treatment to anyone who has a problem with alcohol or drugs that is impacting on their life.
When I Googled treatment centres, on Thursday, before coming I was desperate. I was drinking more and the consequences were becoming greater. My world was closing in on me and everything was falling apart and there was no way out.
I was frightened could not stop drinking and felt that there was no way out. I had previously made excuses for not entering treatment, mostly lying and not being honest to myself and others about my disease.
How could I go into treatment without anyone finding out I am an alcoholic. On Google, the first centre I noted was Open Minds so with no research I rang and spoke to Carl and Jan.
They said pack your bags and arranged an out of hours admission. It was scary but I eventually made it in the following day full of fear regret and remorse
For the first two weeks I wanted to go home, but knew I needed to stay so had to accept it. However, now I don't want to go home. It is safe here, but it is not the ”real world” and I can't hide away forever
Everyone here has been amazing and so committed to recovery. Everything has been put in place and has happened for a reason, although, I didn't always see and agree with this at the time.
I would like to thank you all, the counsellors for their help, support, wisdom and knowledge.
Thanks for lecturing me and guiding me, thank you also to the House Managers, Volunteers and Admin team who work so hard behind the scenes.
Dear open minds, I woke up in your arms a month ago not knowing where I was, however, with your help and treatment I have reached where I am now.
The reason why I have ended up in your hands, you have helped me gain some very useful tools to use while being sober, to keep me sober, one day at a time.
I have learnt how ill I was and still am, and how easy this illness can grab you in a matter of seconds, without a second thought. Thank you for all your positive guides and education, if I didn't come here I could have easily been dead by now.
I feel much better from your help, my family are very happy, my two wonderful kids are very happy and most of all I am happy.
I'm not scared to leave and I have already made a plan for my first week at home and to find a sponsor. I hope and pray my recovery will last a long time, I leave on Sunday. I cannot thank you, anymore, I hope your good work will help other people to achieve the programme.
I would like to say thank you to the house managers who do a difficult job. Sometimes, under very trying circumstances, their patience knows no boundaries.
Also a massive thank you the Counsellors whose dedication experience, patience and knowledge, which is passed on to us in what is an forever changing group.
I thank you all and to finish I would like to say all the very best of luck to Open Minds and hope you continue to achieve success and your successes continue to grow, thank you
I came here six months ago to get better, I know my drinking was out of control, my family were worried and so was I. I have learnt a lot about myself and my drinking, I have learnt that I am powerless over my drinking, once I pick up that first drink I know the madness will start.
I want to live a happy and sober life, I would like to thank Jan Carl and all the Counsellors and staff for their support, you have encouraged me and helped my self esteem while I have been here.
I will now do my very best to carry on this work and keep sober by attending meetings and sticking with the winners in AA. So thank you again, to all the staff at OpenMinds for setting me up on my recovery.
Thank you all for the help I have received from you.
The advice, encouragement and understanding you gave, you are so easy to get along with.
Your openness of your own past addictions made sure I never felt I was a bad person. Sharing some of your own stories made my progress easier.
You all do a great job and I thank you once again for your support and encouragement, thank you
I attended Open Minds in September 2012. I was very underweight and I was in need of help to get me on my feet and after a year or so I've started back on my feet.
Thanks to Open Minds they looked after me, taught me the twelve steps, they helped me to get voluntary work and I now open the shop in the mornings, work in the office and now I've decided to go on a college course on counselling people with alcohol addiction issues. I am doing this because I'm hoping to make a difference and give what I have been given back.
I am a recovering addict who if being honest has done most people's “yet's” (a yet is all the things that could have happened to an addict but haven't “yet”).
I have lost count of the number of Detoxes and Rehabs I have been into before. The final one I was sent to Open Minds, in truth, changed my life due to the 12 step programme that is ran here.
There is a balance here that works, “I am proof of that”, 30 years in the madness of this disease was at last addressed, due to the perseverance and dedication of the staff here.
I am now blessed with working here on a voluntary basis, a connection that I respect and appreciate. I gain fulfilment from watching other chemically dependent turn their lives around.
They “walk or stumble in” to watch them turn it around, to watch broken and beaten people get a light back in their eyes and gain new belief, self respect, self worth and a realisation they can stay clean and sober, be given the tools to stay that way, its amazing.
Open Minds was the pivotal point in the start of my recovery and the only way I can keep what I've been given is by giving it back. Open Minds helps me to achieve this.
It is fulfilling to be able to do this.
I am grateful beyond words and so are my family
I wish to share a short story with you about my journey into addiction and how my family suffered as they watched me killing myself slowly.
I had gone to a number of rehabilitation centres for months at a time all ending in relapse after months of care and a lot of tax payers money.
The difference with this rehabilitation centre, Open Minds, is they provide a lot of therapeutic groups, support and structure similar to other rehabs I had experienced but most of all most staff members are in recovery themselves. This made me feel like they understood me and showed me a great example of change and how it could be possible for me to turn my life around as they shared their own experience, strength and hope with me during my stay at Open Minds.
I stayed in Open Minds for 9 months and relocated from my home town. I progressed in a sober house with the help and care of Open Minds then I progressed onto college and doing voluntary work, giving back to society.
I am 5 years sober today and lead a normal healthy lifestyle. Today I am employed as a support worker at Open Minds where I give to others as it wasgiven to me. There is nothing more enjoyable doing something that I love to do and being a respected member of society.
Thank you, because you've done just that opened my mind.
I have a better sober life, thinking about the positive things I can do and not always thinking in a negative way about everything.
When I came here a month ago, I was full of myself but knew I couldn't manage on my own anymore and I needed help. I'm so lucky I came here and not somewhere else, I wish I could've stayed longer, so now I hope I've absorbed enough to help my sobriety, by carrying on with what I've learnt and continue to learn step by step, all 12 of them.
Now when I get home, I know how much hard work and time I'll need to get back to “normal”. You've made me realise what I've got to do to hopefully stay sober and clean, taking it day by day.
You've put me on the road to recovery and sobriety and with the 12 steps, going to meetings and finding a sponsor and a lot of hard work. Hopefully this will happen, I know I've not been the easiest person to teach but you managed it. The greatest respect to you all and I thank you all thank you Open Minds
I've met some wonderful people in nine months and some people I've not got on with.
I've met some winners along the way and I see people who, I thought, were never going to make it, but they still come back for aftercare each week.
I just want to say thank you to some of the friends that I had who have graduated, you all were like my family.
I would like to say thank you to Open Minds for helping me through this bad time in my life.
When I was down and out you took me in and slowly got me better, I have been taught a lot of things by Open Minds, I hope I can use the tools that all the staff have given me to keep my sobriety.
Thank you for putting me on the right track and helping me find my “higher power”, I will always remember the things you have done for me.
I never wanted to stay on after the first week, but I am so glad I have done, I could not have done this without all of the people here thank you all so much goodbye.