Addiction has a huge impact on the function of your brain. Not only do different drugs alter the brain differently, but men and women choose and use drugs for different reasons. Your comfort level in rehab will also have an impact on how well you can open up during group and private therapies. Are there gender specific treatment centers available? Yes!
Indications are that men tend to experiment with drugs that will provide them with a benefit. Beer will help them be more confident and marijuana will help them relax. Women are more likely to abuse prescription drugs than marijuana and alcohol. They are also often trying to self-medicate away symptoms of physical and emotional pain.
The pain of detox will likely leave you feeling very fragile. As noted above, addiction changes how your brain works. Your ability to make decisions about your future and your safety is altered by drug use and likely not for the better. Feeling safe and comfortable in community, particularly during those early days after detox, will have an impact on your progress as you move into the healing stages of rehab.
Unfortunately, many women in need of detox and rehab are survivors of domestic abuse. Living in an environment of constant danger can also change how your brain works. For women in the early stages of detox may struggle to open up about their experiences, their emotional pain and their hopes for the future. In the company of men, women may not be able to open up, heal, and share fully.
There are men who also have a great deal of relationship pain in their past. They may view addiction as a sign of weakness or a lack of willpower. In rehab, they may struggle to reach out to community and counselors and ask for help in front of a woman. Some men may feel that they need to somehow atone for the damage done by other men; others may feel attacked as a member of a group when a woman tries to talk about pain in her past.
For those with a great deal of addiction in their family background, gender specific treatment options can take the pressure off during therapies. If your mom was an addict, the disfunction in your family may have been more internalized or private. Male addiction patterns and activities tend to be more external. Both likely contributed to your current pain.
The difference in communication styles will also have an impact on the time it takes you to open up, particularly in community. Like it or not, communication experts inform us that most women will sit back in group settings while men will speak up. While a group therapist will give everyone time and space to speak up, overcoming that historical reticence will be especially challenging for some women.
Many people who have been using alcohol and drugs for an extended period of time will benefit from a physical activity program. If you are someone who is not comfortable working out in front of the opposite sex, access to a gender specific treatment center can give you more freedom of movement as you work to rebuild your health.
Safety and security for those in the LGBTQ community is also critical to effective rehab. Cultural rejection, particularly from generation to generation, can reduce the power of rehab for someone who is neither straight nor cisgender. Many in the LGBTQ community have suffered violence at the hands of others, often men. The risk of violence can be so severe as to trigger flashbacks and PTSD.
Part of treatment is to assess the mental health of the client and provide more effective therapy and treatment than self-medicating with drugs and alcohol. For anyone who has suffered physical, emotional or financial abuse, triggers can come up through connections in the rehab setting. A gender specific rehab option can reduce the risk of tripping those triggers. Someone in the midst of a PTSD episode who does not have access to their drug of choice may suffer a huge setback in terms of their confidence and sense of safety.
Anything that gets in the way of your ability to get help needs to be addressed. If gender specific treatment allows you to open up, share and build a healthier future, you can find it! Ready to get started? Call us today at 833-820-2922.