They said what ..?
Spotlight on the national media
THERE REMAINS CONSIDERABLE STIGMA AROUND DRUG USE , which largely falls into two strands . There ’ s snobbish ( and often racist ) moralising , where people who use drugs are looked down upon as ‘ junkies ’, feckless and irresponsible people to whom we owe no sympathy . There ’ s also a ‘ punching up ’ version , which posits recreational drug use as a metropolitan decadence for hedgefund managers , students at Bristol University and Michael Gove … But the problem here is the law itself and how it ’ s applied , rather than any one demographic fuelling demand ... Lambasting privileged people who use drugs plays into the same discourse that justifies criminalisation . James Grieg , Guardian , 5 September
‘ Lambasting privileged people who use drugs plays into the same discourse that justifies criminalisation .’
THERE IS GREAT CONCERN that what little is left of public health will now be further weakened and marginalised . This fate would be very much in keeping with this government ’ s philosophy that sees individual behaviour as being the source of health problems and believes that the role of the state should be limited to providing information to the public and then leaving them to make their own choices . This completely ignores the fact that major public health problems such as alcohol and substance misuse , sexual health , obesity , and smoking are societal issues where political and policy decision-making dictates , to a very large extent , the degree to which the health of the whole population is damaged or improved . There is no doubt that it is the government ’ s behaviour that needs to change , otherwise all we will experience is serial bouts of victim-blaming where individuals are held responsible for their own ill-health . Gabriel Scally , Guardian , 9 September
WHILE THE STIGMA AROUND MENTAL HEALTH disorders is thankfully waning , the same cannot be said for people with an alcohol use disorder . The question of ‘ fault ’ looms strongly over individuals . People with an addiction are made to feel ashamed and treated as if they simply can ’ t be bothered to stop . Current attitudes mean that pledging to improve their services is not a vote winner and those struggling to cope are forgotten . Julia Sinclair , Independent , 16 September
COUNTY LINES OPERATIONS exploit young and vulnerable teenagers to act as drug couriers by drug gangs , meaning they take the greatest risks as they are the most visible part of the supply and distribution chain of illicit drugs . In any other setting this abuse of young children would attract the attention and support of the state via social services , who would intervene to ensure they were removed from this activity and adequately protected . But this is about illegal drugs where the state response has a history of illogical action based on ideology not caring pragmatism . Ian Hamilton , Independent , 26 September
TIME TO TRANSFORM
Expert help for substance issues and more from Acorn Transformational Counselling
Acorn Transformational Counselling
offers support in a safe and confidential environment , and provides help with issues around addictions as well as depression and anxiety , abuse and trauma , confidence and selfesteem and more . A private counselling service for adults , it is available online and via telephone .
The service combines psychodynamic psychotherapy with cognitive behavioural therapy ( CBT ). Psychodynamic psychotherapy looks at how deep-rooted issues from the past can have a profound impact on day-to-day life and lead to recurring problems . The process is collaborative , and the relationship between client and therapist is hugely important in allowing the client to gain a deeper understanding of themselves and develop greater self-awareness and insight in order to achieve lasting change .
CBT , meanwhile , focuses on how thoughts , beliefs and attitudes can affect feelings and behaviour . It aims to free people from patterns of negative thinking that can have a devastating impact on their mental health . Widely used within the NHS , this form of therapy helps people to challenge self-defeating thoughts and behaviours and so improve their quality of life . Currently , all of Acorn ’ s counselling is being provided online .
The COVID-19 pandemic has seen more and more support move online out of necessity , but this can create opportunities for people to engage with a therapist who might otherwise find it difficult , whether for practical or emotional reasons . It enables people to receive therapy in the privacy of their own home , or another private place where they feel comfortable and secure .
‘ When meeting online , the relationship that we create between us will be at the heart of our work together ,’ says Stephen Pattinson , an experienced psychotherapist and CBT therapist in private practice based in Stockport , Burnley and Blackpool . ‘ We will collaborate closely to help you to explore and reflect on your past and current experiences and challenges and to face fears you may hold about the future . Through this gentle exploration , you may find you are able to gain some relief from the emotional pressures and pain that you may have found hard to manage alone and to bring about positive transformation and change .’
‘ Together , we ’ ll try to make sense of the things you are dealing with and work to find a solution that works for you ,’ he continues . ‘ I have vast experience providing therapy in the NHS and charitable sectors . I can support a wide range of issues including bereavement , trauma / abuse / relationship issues and specialise in the treatment of addiction for which I have written and developed successful treatment programmes for the past 18 years . I am a registered member of the British Association of Counselling and Psychotherapy and qualified supervisor and senior lecturer in counselling .’
Clients can pay per session , and there is a discounted rate for people on benefits and those having financial difficulties .
Call today on 07749167868 or email spattinson @ acornrecovery . org . uk
WWW . DRINKANDDRUGSNEWS . COM OCTOBER 2020 • DRINK AND DRUGS NEWS • 17