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173 - Nicole Bifano, LCSW - The Therapeutic Process and AL-ANON

Real Recovery Talk

Release Date: 04/08/2021

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“This disease does not discriminate and it’s really hard to get sober.” -Nicole Bifano

Today, Ben and I are chatting to Nicole Bifano, a primary worker at Rock Recovery Center and an LCSW, about the therapeutic process, the steps of detoxification, and the details of AL-ANON membership.

Why Nicole Chose to Work with Recovering Addicts

Nicole felt called by God to work in the realm of addiction treatment. Working at a treatment center was her only option when she graduated. Although Nicole didn’t plan on working in an alcohol and drug rehab center, she fell in love with her job. “I was able to discover who I was in the process as I had an attachment to this disease since I grew up around it.” 

Nicole’s Perspective on Counseling Addicts

She realizes that it’s not about the substance; for addicts, it’s the underlying emotional imbalance that brings them into addiction. “For me, it’s about identifying with people on a human level.” Nicole looks to connect with those in recovery to show them that they are loved and cared for as human beings. “Connecting with people on their level gives you the ability to help them.”

Breaking Through the Addictive Mindset

Clients have a range of issues, and sometimes they are still in the party and drugging stage. By looking at their past life history and experiences, Nicole can get a good insight into the source of their addiction and work with them to move past their emotional grief. Many of her clients don’t feel loved or that they don’t belong, and addiction to drugs gave them a feeling of inclusion. 

Listen in and find out the multiple facets of addiction, how Nicole facilitates the healing process, and how she guides her patients through the recovery process.

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Show Notes:

  • [04:14] Why Nicole chose to work with those recovering from addiction.
  • [06:15] Her approach to counseling those with addiction issues.
  • [10:30] Nicole's treatment approach with her counseling.
  • [12:51] Common elements across patients with drug addiction.
  • [18:45] How time is spent working with clients during counseling.
  • [20:27] Creating connection through a relationship built on trust.
  • [25:05] Resources to support your loved one through their healing process.
  • [32:55] Tangible Al-Anon takeaways and why Nicole uses them as a resource.
  • [39:33] The importance of relinquishing control as an addict.

Episode Links and Resources