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Helping Adoptees Heal from Addiction's Grasp With David Bohl - Ep 129

Unraveling Adoption

Release Date: 01/22/2024

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"Change can happen incrementally, and oftentimes it's better that it does. We've heard the cliche 'trust the process.' Oftentimes the process is the most important thing." - David Bohl

Join relinquishee/adoptee recovery coach David Bohl as he confronts the paradox of finding trust and healing in the intersection of adoption and addiction. He guides individuals towards healthy coping mechanisms and support in the face of deep-rooted trauma.

In this episode, you will be able to:

  • Understand the possible impacts of adoption trauma on mental health and addiction.

  • Embrace TRUST as a key component in the journey to recovery.

  • Explore the unique challenges of addiction for adopted people.

  • Find safe and supportive communities for healing and growth.

My special guest is David Bohl

Meet David B. Bohl, an expert in addiction and adoption, whose personal journey through addiction recovery and exploration of the complex intersection between adoption and addiction brings a unique blend of empathy and expertise to our conversation. With a background that includes serving on the boards of prominent addiction and adoption organizations and receiving credentials from esteemed organizations like the Hazelton Betty Ford Graduate School of Addiction Studies, David's insights are informed, compassionate, and relatable. His memoir, Parallel Universes, and nonfiction book, Relinquishment and Addiction: What Trauma Has to Do with It, not only solidify his expertise but also highlight his commitment to providing support for individuals affected by adoption and addiction. David's balanced approach to destigmatizing addiction and promoting recovery reflects his genuine passion for helping others navigate their healing journey.

📆 Community Calendar: UnravelingAdoption.com/Calendar

✨Healing the Adoption Constellation database: UnravelingAdoption.com/Healing

đź’ŚSign up for our Unraveling Adoption email list: http://eepurl.com/hVIAVX

The resources mentioned in this episode are:

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Other Resources:

 

 

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Unraveling Adoption is produced and hosted by Beth Syverson

Music written and performed by Joseph Nakao

Email questions or comments to [email protected]

Find us on Facebook, Instagram, and YouTube

Support Unraveling Adoption on Patreon: Patreon.com/UnravelingAdoption

Check out our website: www.UnravelingAdoption.com

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Embracing trust in recovery -

David emphasizes the crucial role of trust in recovery. From his own experiences, he realized that as an adoptee he had struggled to trust himself, others, and Higher Powers. His recovery journey was initiated by a process of rebuilding trust and finding healthier ways to deal with life's stressors. This topic is important as it underscores the concept that trust serves as a fundamental pillar in the path to recovery.

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Timestamped summary of this episode:
00:00:00 - Introduction and Background
Beth introduces herself, and acknowledges her and her son Joe's commitment to helping those impacted by adoption. She also introduces David Bohl as a guest who has struggled and recovered from addiction.

00:01:00 - David's Adoption Story and Addiction
David shares his adoption story of being relinquished at birth and adopted, as well as his struggles with alcohol and nicotine addiction. He highlights the impact of trust issues stemming from his relinquishment and adoption experiences.

00:03:42 - Destigmatizing Addiction
David discusses the need to destigmatize addiction and use everyday language to describe and address addiction issues. He emphasizes the importance of building trust and using more accepting language in recovery programs.

00:07:29 - Recovery and Identity Formation
David shares his journey of recovery, emphasizing the expansion of his identity from a disconnected individual to someone who has learned healthy coping mechanisms and repaired fractured relationships. He highlights the ongoing process of identity formation in recovery.

00:08:52 - Understanding Relinquishment and Addiction
Beth expresses empathy for the depth of pain experienced by relinquished individuals and acknowledges the tough challenge of dealing with disconnection from a young age. David emphasizes that addiction is simply a problem to be solved and discusses the need for understanding and support in addressing addiction issues.

00:12:08 - Importance of Safe Communities and Validation
David emphasizes the importance of finding safe communities and getting validated in adoption spaces. He explains how it allows individuals to understand different perspectives and get to know themselves better, but also highlights that it is just the minimum needed to start healing.

00:13:26 - Stabilizing the Situation
David discusses the need to stabilize the situation in addiction treatment, emphasizing the importance of eliminating unhealthy behaviors and perceptions while enhancing one's ability to feel good about themselves and their place in the world. He stresses the need for careful discussions and robust community support.

00:15:04 - Addiction and Adoption Constellation Support Group
David shares insights about the addiction and adoption constellation support group he runs with Celia Center. He explains the purpose of the group, emphasizing the importance of creating a safe place, validating experiences, and facilitating robust discussions within the adoption constellation community.

00:18:33 - Resources and Support for the Adoption Constellation
David discusses the availability of resources and support for the adoption constellation community, emphasizing the importance of raising awareness, providing psychoeducation, and letting people know about the various resources that now exist, especially through virtual platforms like Zoom.

00:20:32 - Helping Adopted Individuals in Addiction
David shares his approach to helping adopted individuals struggling with addiction, emphasizing the importance of finding someone to trust, getting clear on what's working and what's not, setting up goals, identifying outcomes, and providing resources and support to help individuals overcome their challenges

00:23:40 - Introduction to Recovery Coaching
David Bohl discusses his role as a recovery consultant and coach, offering support and resources for those struggling with addiction.

00:24:50 - Reach Out for Help
David emphasizes the importance of seeking help and finding resources that work for each individual, encouraging listeners to reach out and find support.

00:25:34 - Be Gentle with Yourself
David shares a message of self-compassion and incremental change, reminding listeners to be gentle with themselves and trust the healing process.

00:26:30 - Coaching Groups for Adoptive Parents
Beth invites adoptive parents to join coaching groups focused on supporting teens and young adults struggling with addiction, as well as nurturing identity and making connections for younger children.

00:27:39 - Conclusion and Call to Action
Beth encourages listeners to share the episode with those who may benefit from the important discussion on addiction, and expresses gratitude to David for his wisdom and mentorship.