Happiness is a state of well-being, contentment, joy, bliss, satisfaction and delight, as we are told by Merriam-Webster.
Well, that is completely out of the question when most of us think we will never laugh again. We have used up all the laughter and fun with our drinking and drugging. And, now that that’s over, what's left for us is going to be a slow march to the grave. How possibly can we ever have any fun or laughter without our friend the bottle? Our friend the spoon? Our friend the needle, pipe, and or glass? This must be the end.
There is no question that speaking up about sexual abuse is paramount to healing. As a licensed therapist, I started a group called It Happens to Boys in 2007. Since that time, I have presented workshops with a group of male survivors and have spoken at various recovery centers across California. Getting to that point was not an easy task. In fact, it took several years for the centers to allow us to speak directly to the men in treatment. The recommendation for men in recovery, at that time, was that they must have at least one year of sobriety before they deal with trauma issues.
We talk about a lot of things when we speak about becoming healthier, more balanced. Eating a nutritious varied diet, daily meditation, regular exercise, and getting enough sleep are among the most obvious points that come up in my discussions with patients. However, while many of us are pursuing a healthier lifestyle, we often forget to make time for fun and relaxation. While I personally think of exercise as fun, I realize that not everyone feels that way.
Dr. Stephen Sideroff has been an important part of the addiction treatment community since initiating a research program examining conditioned aspects of addiction, at UCLA and the VA in 1976. For the last 30 years, he has coordinated the Psychiatry department’s certification course in Chemical Dependency. Dr. Sideroff is an expert in resilience, optimal performance, addiction, and neurofeedback.
Dr. Haroutunian, best known as “Dr. Harry,” has been practicing medicine for over 30 years. His inspirations for contributing to the recovery world come directly from science as well as his personal recovery. He has maintained a longstanding private practice and has consulted with several residential treatment centers in the areas of medication assisted detox and treatment planning. Dr. Harry also works with high profile professional athletes and professional sports teams. Recently, Dr. Harry published Being Sober: A Step-by-Step Guide to Getting To, Getting Through and Living in Recovery" and has collaborated with Dr. Louis Teresi, author of Hijacking the Brain: How Drug and Alcohol Addiction Hijacks our Brains - The Science Behind Twelve-Step Recovery. Currently, he is Physician Director of the Betty Ford Center Professionals Program.