Local Resident Finds Recovery Through South Shore’s Substance Use Disorder Program

Local Resident Finds Recovery Through South Shore’s Substance Use Disorder Program

ROCKLAND, M.A. – When Ronald L. arrived at South Shore Rehabilitation & Skilled Care Center in August of 2022, he could not walk and was dependent on the use of a wheelchair and the staff to get around. He also had severe spinal injuries and was using alcohol as a means to suppress his pain. He needed the care and help a skilled nursing center provides, but also help with alcoholism.

Ronald shared that he struggled with alcoholism throughout his life, so when he was admitted to South Shore for short-term rehab following a hospitalization, he had high expectations for what his rehabilitation journey should look like.

But South Shore is unlike a traditional nursing home. On top of the skilled services like nursing, physical, occupational, and speech therapy, South Shore additionally provides supportive services for people with substance use disorder diagnoses, like alcoholism for Ronald. Substance use disorder counselors and After-Care Coordinators, as well as social workers, are on-site to assist in targeted therapy sessions, activities, and counseling for the residents. The staff also ensure proper community services are set up when the resident is discharged back into the community.

“I hold this program in high regard for my health and well-being,” said Ronald, who credits his successful rehabilitation journey to South Shore’s Substance Use Disorder Counselor Stephanie Roy, who is a certified drug and alcohol counselor.

“She has consistently demonstrated unwavering support, empathy, and expertise in guiding me through exercises and behavioral management techniques tailored to my needs,” Ronald said. “Her unique approach has enabled me to confront deep-sealed issues, identify triggers for substance use, and unravel childhood traumas that has long-hindered my progress.”

Roy said she wants those afflicted with substance use disorder to know that they are not defined by their diagnosis. She instills this methodology in the residents she works with at South Shore and this approach had a huge impact on Ronald.

He explains that through Roy’s fast and effective counseling, she designed a curriculum unique to him that delved into the science of the disease and helped him uncover trauma unrelated to his upbringing and what he then carried into adulthood.

“Through her guidance and encouragement, I have achieved milestones in my rehabilitation efforts that I once deemed unattainable. She has empowered me to confront my demons, paying the way for healing, growth, and self-acceptances,” Ronald said.

Substance use disorder program services include but are not limited to access to trained drug and alcohol counselors, group and individual therapies, educational programs and writing assignments, methadone maintenance (if needed), behavioral management techniques, and other programs.

Ronald describes the rehabilitation at South Shore as a “full body rehab center.” He also participated in several physical and occupational sessions to strengthen his body to begin walking again. After achieving therapy goals, he was then placed on a functional body maintenance program, an exercise regime to maintain his strength.

Ronald hopes others who are struggling with substance use disorders can find similar success to what he found at South Shore. Upon discharge, he left a letter with Roy for her to share with new residents who come into the center.

Part of the letter reads, “I know how you feel. Perhaps not to your experience specifically but I felt the same defeat, discouragement, hopelessness, and helplessness. I understand if you’re skeptical or hesitant, as I once was. Stop rolling your eyes. It’s natural to want a quick fix to sobriety, but I’ve come to realize that true recovery is a journey … for those struggling with substance use, my advice is simple: embrace the opportunity for growth during your time here. Know that you are deserving of help and capable of change.”

“Stephanie has set a standard that needs to be followed. She is the single best influence in my life,” Ronald said.

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June 11, 2024 A Healthier Approach To Caring