Addiction does not discriminate—regardless of a person's age, social background, religious persuasion, where they were born or view of the world, addiction across the globe is a massive issue that affects the lives of many. Described by the medical and scientific fraternity as a chronic relapsing disorder, the disease of addiction and alcoholism is defined by "continuing to abuse the particular substance despite negative and harmful consequences."
Despite the pain, loss of life and livelihoods, financial impact and the devastation substance misuse/dependence or addiction (alcoholism) can cause, there is also a chance for hope. At Addiction Solutions Victoria, we see lives transformed every day. People do recover. We wanted to share some of those stories with you.
What follows is an inspiring depiction of real individuals who found the courage to get help and change their lives. With all of the obstacles to treatment, these individuals ultimately committed to beginning the path to recovery—and that commitment led them to a better life.
* Names of all of the below client testimonials have been changed to protect people’s privacy and confidentiality.
Rehab during Covid-19
I was stressed about going to rehab during COVID-19.
An option where I could stay at home and participate in a rehab at home program was a perfect fit. I could stay safe from Corona, address my drug and alcohol challenges and treat my addiction at the same time.
The ASV program changed me and changed my life. It didn't happen by magic. It took heaps of hard work and commitment. I was told from day one that if I put the recovery plan into action that things would turn around quickly. It proved to be the case. I had to have a good, hard look at myself and begin to build a more positive relationship with the woman in the mirror. It was daunting. I found it difficult. It was worth it and it was liberating.
After completing the 12-week extended program, I have continued to practice the things that I learned during the program. I am building a better me and a better life. To say I am grateful does not cut it. I have me back. I am free. I no longer yearn to use ice, cocaine, cannabis and alcohol. Based on what I now know, I can do this one day at a time.
Despite growing up in a fairly typical, somewhat normal blue-collar family, somehow I always felt out of place, uncomfortable, different somehow, almost like I had been born on another planet. When I found substances, they removed my doubts, fears and insecurities. I felt that I could breathe, this was the start of a slow descent into addiction.
I am now happy, joyous and free to achieve my dreams and become the best me, I also am now looking forward to my life, thanks so much ASV, my brother would be proud!
Turned my Life Around
6 months ago I was in a desperate position, my partner had moved out and I was drinking massive amounts of alcohol and using cocaine daily.
I was referred to ASV by my Addiction Specialist but never got around to engaging with the program. I wasn't ready.
It took being arrested after a drug-fuelled incident and a visit to my local police cells to wake up.
The next day I called Jase from ASV. I felt right from the start of our conversation that he could assist me to turn my life around. Turns out I was right. I began the ASV Rehab at Home program and participated willingly for 12 weeks.
The results have been amazing. Can't thank the team at ASV enough,
Pat & Fam
I came home late one night to an ultimatum from my wife, stop lying, stop using and get help, now, or she and my kids were gone.
She clearly stated that she loved me but didn't love most of my behaviours.
One of her close friends had previously over many challenges relating to their use of drugs and alcohol. My wife had been speaking with her, they had hatched up a plan. The plan was to contact a guy who managed a Rehab at Home program and just have a chat, that was all I had to do, have a chat with this bloke.
The outcome of the chat was I was encouraged, in a supportive and respectful manner, to reconsider the reality of my position and how my behaviours were impacting those closest to me.
It was a confronting conversation.
It was also life-changing.
I arranged for an assessment at home and then set off on the 12 weeks extended Rehab at Home program. It has been one of the best decisions of my life. Not only have I stopped drinking and drugging, but I have also finally found peace with the man in the mirror.
Thanks to ASV, the Rehab at Home team delivered on their commitment to providing me an affordable, evidence-based drug and alcohol treatment program.
They also made me a commitment that they would provide me an authentic opportunity at both positive change and recovery.
I am super pleased to report they delivered on this also.
After partying way too hard from my early teens until my thirties, I finally realised how disconnected I was from all of the things in my life that mattered the most to me.
I am now moving on and recovering all the things that my addiction took away (thanks Jase).
In all sincerity, I recommend that any person suffering from their addiction call ASV.
Recovery is possible!
I couldn’t have done it without you
‘Jason has been an integral and extremely helpful part of my own personal recovery from alcohol and drugs. Not only did he oversee the drug and alcohol treatment process I participated in, but he was also a key support in the development of my aftercare and relapse prevention plan.
I was introduced to Jason through a personal friend when I reached out for help during a difficult time in my life.
Jason helped me to access a Rehab at Home program at a time in my life when i was suffering badly from my addictions to drugs and alcohol. During this time, Jason also organised a financial counsellor to assist me with the financial difficulties that were due to my addictions. This relieved a lot of my pressure and stress and gave me the space to recover.
He puts his heart and soul into his own recovery and helping others recover from alcoholism and drug addiction. He is an inspiration.'
Today, my life is OK
Today, I haven't had a drink or used a drug, it's been many years since I have been able to say that.
After 15 straight years of banging my head against the wall, I finally have some hope that change is possible for me and my family.
Today I am learning that I am enough and that if I stick to my plan I will be ok. I have learned that change is possible. The process is difficult but the rewards are considerable.
I was also introduced to a community of people in recovery who support me to maintain my treatment plan. Without them, I would be lost. I can't do this alone, I need people who understand and who can help me stay on track in my life. I need to focus on the longer-term objectives of being the best "me" that I can be.
Thanks to the team at ASV, I was able to stop using, detox at home and attend a rehab program at home. Pre-treatment, my priority was protecting my privacy. The rehab at home approach was an ideal option. The staff were amazing. Patient, supportive, professional and passionate about assisting me to completely turn my life around and head in a sustainable way into a new direction.
I am amazed at the transformation, the program was challenging, at times overwhelming. I was encouraged to get real, sit still and look at the man in the mirror. It was the most difficult thing that I have ever done. It was also the most rewarding. I am so proud of myself for facing up to my issues in a sincere way. More than that, I have also introduced the action required to maintain the positive new me.
Sincerely, my world has changed, I couldn't have done it alone, thanks so much to the amazing team at ASV, you are amazing!
Hey, got to say, after a while my active addiction was just one drama after another.
Early days were pretty cool, I felt alive, excited like I was a part of some sort of cool club or culture. Those feels didn't last though and fairly quickly some really uncool stuff began to happen both to me and the peeps around me.
Took me quite a while to realise the reality of my situation.
Took me even longer to consider moving into a place where I actually began to look at what was going on, look for some sort of explanation, begin to seek some sort of change or support process.
Eventually, I sought the help I needed and found it at ASV.
The Rehab at Home program was awesome, can't thank you guys enough, now i have a plan of action and the motivation to implement it.
Coming from both a good family and having a private school education was no defence against the ravage of drug and alcoholaddiction.
Despite knowing better, I found myself on the wrong side of the tracks and the law on numerous occasions.
Each time I hit a rock bottom, I would attempt to gather my forces and introduce some change.
Sadly, I was unsuccessful with this strategy.
Eventually, I realised I couldn't do it alone.
Today I am Enough
All of my life I have been searching for something. I didn't know what that something was I just kept looking. I now know that I was looking for a way to be ok. I tried work, boys, girls, I went on adventures. None of these things did much more than provide temporary relief. Then I found drugs and alcohol. The relief was immediate and continues for several years. Finally, I could breathe again. I felt like I had been reborn.
Then my world slowly began to collapse around me. I lost my job during COVID-19 and was forced into isolation as a result of a stage 3 lockdown. It was horrendous. I began to drink, and drink and drink. Basically, I drank around the clock. I wasn't eating and I hardly went outside. My sister came to check on me and was shocked at how I appeared. She called Jase at ASV who arranged an initial consultation on the spot. The next day I began the ASV rehab at home program. I am still engaged with the service as I write this. Thank you so much, today I have found what I was searching for. Today, I am enough!
Never to Late
I'm an older guy, been drinking for a long time, I realised long ago I had an issue I just never really got around to doing something about it.
My GP told me if I didn't stop drinking I would die. I thought he was joking. Turns out he wasn't. After some serious medical issues and a visit to a hospital, I called ASV. I am now nearly a year sober. First time in over 50 years. My daughters are doing the Family Solutions program which they are finding very helpful. I am enjoying my sobriety and reconnecting with my family.
I came to you broken, a shell of a man, I was on my knees screaming for help. Your professional response to my distress and the emphatic way you supported me towards positive change was life-changing. Completing the rehab at home program to address my challenges with addiction was the catalyst for a dramatic shift in my attitude, beliefs and thinking. From the bottom of my heart, thank you.
Today I am clean and I am sober. More so, I am pleased to be clean and sober. I have found a new way of living, the change has been profound, I am finally happy in my skin.
I have a new life
‘I looked at Jason's life and what he had become and he made it feel possible that if I put in some work I could get the same outcome, all I had to do was try.
I’ve been clean for four years thanks to Jason. When I started my recovery I was an ice addict who definitely thought no one could possibly know what I was going through, thinking or feeling. Within the first minute, I could completely identify with him through his own story of rehabilitation. He opened my eyes to the world of recovery; I learned some amazing tools and still use them today. His life experience made it easier for me to communicate with him because he knew exactly what I was going through.
With his help, I was able to turn my life around. He is down-to-earth, practices what he preaches and brings out the best in anybody who will give him the chance and give themselves that chance. I now have a kid, with another on the way, own a house, and have a steady job. A lot of that I owe to that first phone call I made and the fact he told me that there was hope and asked if I wanted my life back.'
All the support I needed
‘I wouldn’t be where I am today without the help and guidance I received from ASV.
Giving up drugs was only the start of my journey; I needed to work on myself to stay clean.
Jason’s friendly, professional approach delivered in the comfort of my own home, allowed me to feel relaxed and safe enough to speak my mind. He explained, showed and gave me the tools to develop and continue a clean and happy life.
Jason is a friendly down-to-earth guy that has no judgment no matter what is being spoken about which made it really easy to talk to him. He not only helped me get back on track but really helped my family as well.
I could not recommend a better person to someone that is struggling with addiction; all he needs is a chance to talk with you and you will see the positive impact that he can have on your life.'
I didn't think my use of drugs and alcohol was a problem until I was encouraged to call the ASV team.
20 minutes later I was beginning to comprehend the nature of addiction and the reality of my predicament.
A few days later I had completed my initial screen and assessment and had a clear recovery plan. It was now time for action.
Turns out that I had a few issues. The treatment approach at the rehab at home program was something I could both get my head around and sink my teeth into.
The process was transformational.
I am now 6 months clean and sober and feel at peace for the first time in a long time.
ASV provided our son with the tools to turn his life around and was really supportive of us as well.
Our son and our whole family were provided support, encouragement, guidance and an understanding of what was going on. It has been six months now and already we can see a huge difference in our son’s attitude, personality, lifestyle and positivity. We are confident that the recovery routine we developed as a family is sustainable.
Jason's explanation of addiction and addictive personalities made us understand what Jame's is fighting against. He was sincere and dedicated to helping us all. We will be forever in his debt.'
Jame's mum and dad
Time to get Serious
When I woke up, my wife had gone. She had taken my 2 kids with her. I was shocked, not sure why as she had been telling me for ages if I kept using and carrying on she wouldn't stick around. I tried calling her, I was blocked, I was angry and I was hurt.
I called my Mum, she knew, she came over, I cried, so did Mum, she gave me a phone number, I called it, the guy offered me a way out, he said that change was possible and that I could turn the ship around. He also said the team he had assembled was first-rate and the program evidenced and evaluated. He offered me hope, I grabbed it as I was desperate. I began the program, it was a Rehab at Home set up, saw an Addiction doctor, got a diagnosis, getting my head around the problem helped. Turns out addiction is a medical issue, I was relieved. I moved into the solution, created a daily plan, began to practice good self-care, started to feel better.
Now I am 6 months clean and sober. I am repairing relationships with my family, its a slow process but we all want it to work out. I will do this, one day at a time,
Just what I Needed
My experience of the rehab at home program at ASV was life-changing. Big claim I know, but to be honest, words can't describe the amount of positive change I have achieved since beginning the program a few months ago.
Before treatment, my life was a train wreck. It was obvious to anyone who knew me just how messed up I was. The issue was that I just couldn't see it. I had no idea of the reality of my life until the wheels completely fell off. I was driving home after a big night and I crashed my car after passing out behind the wheel. The accident resulted in a few scrapes and bruises. Way more concerning was the fact that I had run another car off the road. They were ok also. I was very lucky, so were they. The hospital recommended I seek treatment for addiction. I agreed and enrolled in the ASV program the day after I was discharged.
The rehab program was just what I needed. I used what I learned to build a realistic and sustainable recovery plan which I stick to today. I am now over 6o days clean and sober and my life is beginning to open up,
After using meth for a long time my partner finally said to me that it was time to choose between her and the drugs, I chose the drugs. At the time I was outraged that she would leave me after all that I had done for her. After completing the rehab at home program I can now see things from her point of view. She loved me and I loved her but the drug was more important. Addiction had me in its grip, I was a slave to it, it took 3 weeks in a prison cell to wake me up to the reality of my position. My life was a mess and I needed help.
Treatment was hard. The program was delivered by people who understood where I was at and what I needed to get my head around the challenges I was facing.
I am now 2 years clean and sober and just completed a diploma in counselling.
Things are looking up,
From a lad to a Dad
After years of messing around fully focused on being a party animal, I was given an ultimatum by the woman I love. Stop being a lad and grow up and be a Dad, she told me she was pregnant and that she can't do this alone.
To say I was freaked out at the prospect of stopping my irresponsible lifestyle and becoming a Dad at the same time was an understatement of epic proportion, something inside me realised the truth of my situation and was excited and motivated at the prospect of a new and exciting chapter in my life. I tried for a few weeks to reduce my addictive behaviours with no success. I needed professional assistance and support. I called ASV. The ASV team were amazing. Right from the first contact I felt supported and understood. The rehab at home program changed my life. My partner got involved with the family solutions program and together, we have moved into a new phase of our relationship and our lives.
Best is yet to come
For a smart guy, I sure did a good job of messing up pretty much everything in my life.
Eventually, my life was messy enough that I was forced to concede that things were out of control and that I needed some assistance to turn my life around.
Picking up the phone and asking for help was one of the scariest and most confronting things I have ever done. Lucky for me the person who answered acknowledged my courage in making that call. They told me that recovery was possible, I was so relieved I nearly wept.
The rehab at home program introduced me to me. I was provided evidence-based information, delivered by professionals with a live experience of both addiction and recovery from addiction. I learned about stinking thinking, and how I couldn't fix my addictive thinking with my addictive thinking. It was the reality check I needed. Mum and my sister got involved with the family solutions program. It made a big difference to our family dynamic.
I grabbed the opportunity with both hands and made the most of it. I am now 3 years clean and sober. The world is really beginning to open up, thanks ASV.
When a few drinks too many drinks turned into a ride home in a police car I picked up the phone and called the consultant at ASV. I had heard from a good friend about a rehab at home program which had helped them get off drugs and alcohol and turn their lives around completely. I enrolled in the program and rolled up my sleeves. I was now on a mission to get my life back on track, whatever it took.
The core program was intensive and forced me to have a really good look at myself. I didn't like what I saw. I resembled little the person that I thought I was. It was a bitter pill to swallow. I put in my best effort and things started to change for the better. Learning about the nature of addiction and the underlying issues that drive it was a game-changer. My family was a great support, they participated in several consultations with the family support program. We all managed to get on the same page and reconnect, it was a healing experience for us all.
Without the ASV program I would be lost, thanks to the support team I am now sober and moving forward in my life.
I grabbed recovery with both hands
'I first met Jason when I was a 24-year-old at a supported accommodation program for youth with alcohol and drug problems. I can recall his humour and ease bringing a light-hearted hopefulness to what was undoubtedly one of the most challenging periods in my life.
Jason is someone who can naturally engage a diverse range of people in all manner of states of wellbeing and distress. Even at this early stage in his career, he always came across as professional and deeply dedicated, both to others and to his own recovery.
Any service would be fortunate to be guided by a person of Jason’s integrity, and his invaluable lived and professional experience.'
Learnt about the problem
Wasn't until I lost my job and my partner walked out that I took a good look in the mirror. To be honest, I didn't like what I saw. The man looking back at me was a stranger. I found it impossible to reconcile the image glaring back at me with the man who I was and wanted to be again. It was time for a change.
I called Jase at ASV. He didn't mess around. Two days later I had completed an assessment and we had developed a viable recovery plan together. I was off to the GP for a referral to see the ASV Addiction Medicine Physician who managed my detox process. Stopping using was hard. Thanks to the ASV rehab at home program I have been able to stay stopped.
I understand now the nature of addiction and what my primary problem is. I can now move forward into a sustainable solution.
Realising that I had had enough of banging my head against the wall was one thing.
Finding the courage to pick up the phone and reach out for help was another.
Despite the reality of my position being desperate, seeking help took me a long time. If I had acted sooner, I may have been able to save my marriage and my business. ASV introduced me to the concept of being a slow learner. I was also a really fast forgetter. Since seeking help and support I really haven't looked back. I seized the opportunity for change with both hands as if my life depended upon it. It did.
Sad to say, I am an ice addict named Blake. I came from a good family and certainly knew right from wrong. Growing up, despite being somewhat popular, I struggled with connection. I started drinking quite early, moved on to cannabis quite quickly and the found ice. It was my poison and my remedy. Without it, I was a broken shell. It took me a few years to realise the negative impact these behaviours were having on my life and the lives of those that I loved.
Eventually, I was ready to look at change. Thanks to the ASV rehab at home program, I was able to find a way to look at my stuff in the least confrontational way possible. Today I am sober and drug-free. I am busy repairing the wreckage of my past. I have returned to work at the family business and am really enjoying the experience. Now, I am looking forward to my future.
Sincere thanks to the team at ASV
Blake and Fam
Regional Recovery Support
I was looking for an affordable drug and alcohol rehabilitation program. I am from regional Victoria and I was resigned to the fact I would have to travel to Melbourne to find something suitable. I was wrapped when I found the ASVrehab at home program. After a good chat with the consultant, I decided to give it a try. It all sounded great. I was stoked that the process and the program were a good fit for me. It was affordable and allowed me to participate in a treatment program while staying at home.
The workbooks were tough, I also started journaling daily. A part of the support program I really enjoyed was the daily check in telephone calls. I felt really supported.
If anyone is seeking some help with drug or alcohol issues, give the ASV team a call, you won’t be disappointed.
From despair to hope
‘Our son has gone from feeling beyond help to being the hopeful, focussed young man we knew he could be.
ASV helped our son find his way. Jason has done that with empathy, subtle ideas and practical words that have resonated in a way that no one had been able to get through before.
Examples of these changes include getting our son out of trackie pants and into smart clothes to begin to become the man he wants to be and doing the right things for his self-esteem like helping in the kitchen.
These sound like tiny events but over the years drugs had literally hijacked our son’s motivation and emotional growth. By staying away from drugs and focussing on his recovery, he is relearning these life skills or developing them for the first time.
Jason has been a guardian angel to our family. He is a hardworking, conscientious and caring Mentoring Coach with extensive knowledge, offering advice, support, rehabilitation, aftercare support and guidance to clients who have experienced trauma or hardship.'
Hi ya, my name is Ben and I am writing this testimonial in the sincere hope that sharing my experience with the challenges of addiction will potentially assist someone to seek help. ASV was amazing, I learned so much about myself and I also learned what the real problem was. For what seems like forever I had blamed my addictive behaviours on everything around me. I also sincerely believed that my problem was the substances i used. Turns out those substances were a symptom of the problem. They were my solution to managing the challenges of my internal and external worlds. I was using substances to self-medicate and avoid reality. It was both overwhelming and a relief at the same time to realise the reality of my predicament. The ASV rehab at home program moved me through a process of change. I am now clean and somewhat serene, thanks ASV.
Free at Last
Thanks to ASV, the Rehab at Home program introduced me to a new way of living resulting in my becoming a better me, a better partner, a better dad and a better employer.
I was lost in the jungle of addiction for so long I can't even remember how it all started. I grew up in a loving and supportive family. I went to good schools and had a reasonable opportunity at an amazing life. I knew right from wrong and had many hopes, dreams and plans for my future.
None of this mattered, once addiction sunk its claws into me, I was lost resulting in many years of confusion, harm and fractured relations.
Despite many negative and harmful consequences, somehow, I kept making the same mistakes over and over. Something had to change, that something was me. I stopped using and drinking, supported by the ASV addiction medicine physician and began the 12-week treatment and recovery support program. It was a life-changer. I now have hope that my life can be both meaningful and fun without relying on substances.
Before completing the program I had no idea what a mess my life had become. Despite obvious challenges with alcohol, cocaine and ice, I was clueless as to what was driving my outrageous behaviours. Thanks to the program I was able to begin to consider my part in messing up pretty much everything in my life and begin to take some personal responsibility in cleaning up my side of the street.
6 weeks later, I am able to look at myself without cringing, this has been a massive relief.
In all sincerity, I can't thank the ASV organisation enough, they provided me the opportunity, I did the rest.
What a Relief
After many years of in some way using speed, ice, alcohol, cannabis, cocaine, GHB, hallucinogens, heroin, MDMA, and ketamine in a high functioning manner, in one night it all blew up in my face. 15 years of drug use, it was pointed out to me by a cranky magistrate that it may be a good time to look at my behaviors. I enrolled in a rehab at home program, to my alarm, I quickly realised I had a substance use problem and was forced to consider that I was a drug addict.
Thanks to the awesome team at ASV I was able to come to terms with the man in the mirror and begin to address my issues, I have now been totally abstinent from all substances for over 6 months, I am a free man, finally!
* Names of all of the above client testimonials have been changed to protect people’s privacy and confidentiality.
"ASV provides a variety of Drug and Alcohol rehabilitation, addiction treatment and recovery support options across Melbourne and Victoria. Working within an organisation that believes passionately that sustainable recovery from addiction is possible is an amazing experience. Supporting people struggling with addiction to achieve sustainable positive change demonstrates to all program participants, and the broader community, the genuine possibilities of recovery". - Jase Bowman - ASV CEO Drug Rehabilitation Center, Melbourne & Geelong 2020.