There’s a lot to consider when you’re thinking about going to or sending a loved one to treatment. There is no shortage of rehabilitation centers for drug and alcohol addiction, and the choices can be overwhelming. It’s an important decision to make, one that usually comes on the heels of or in the midst of a crisis. A sense of urgency can often lead to clouded, fearful, or shortsighted decision-making.
While certainly questions of cost, location, and effectiveness will be top of mind for many, there are several other important questions to consider—questions that offer a true sense of a program’s purpose, direction, and commitment to those they’re trying to help.
Discovery Place is not a treatment center. It is not a rehab facility. It is a recovery retreat that believes in finding physical, emotional and spiritual health through a 12-step approach. For more than 20 years, we’ve been offering men a path to a different way of living.
Before committing to any program anywhere, take the time to ask these questions. Consider what the answers could mean for you or your loved one’s long-term recovery.
1. Does your addiction center work with insurance companies?
It sounds like a no-brainer but our answer probably isn’t what you’d expect. We don’t take insurance. When we saw that people’s care was being dictated by what insurance would or would not pay for, we knew there had to be a better way.
As a nonprofit organization, we believe in providing an affordable solution to individuals suffering from drug and alcohol addiction. When you’re here, we want you to be able to focus on recovery, not on negotiating better terms, more days, or reimbursements. For a fraction of the cost of traditional rehabilitation centers, our guests receive a 30-day residential stay on our beautiful 17-acre property in Burns, Tennessee, just outside Nashville.
2. How many total guests are at the rehab center?
We offer space for only 24 men at a time. By keeping this number low, we are able to give more time and attention to each one of our guests and their families. We want our guests and their loved ones to feel a part of the community we’ve built.
“This is our home and you’re a guest at our home,” says Nick Bullock, our admissions director. “You’re not a patient. You’re not a number. You’re not an inmate. You’re our guest, and we want to show you the love and compassion that a guest in our own home would experience.”
3. How many of your employees have been through your addiction rehabilitation program?
Nearly every single employee at Discovery Place, from the kitchen to admissions and continuing care to executive leadership, has been through our program. When we say we’ve sat in your chair before, we mean we’ve literally sat in your chair before.
“I want to know that I’m going to be happy and that I can be okay in my own skin,” says Nick, recalling his experience of arriving at Discovery Place for the first time in 2009. “And when I have somebody that’s just read about recovery in a book and studied addiction versus someone’s who’s gone through it themselves, it makes such a difference.”
He adds, “We are going to guide you through the 12-step program of recovery to enable you to be happy and usefully whole, to have a sense of purpose and sense of belonging that you’ve never had before. We are right there with you the whole way.”
4. How is community encouraged at your rehab facility?
It’s not a question we’re really ever asked and yet the answer is at the heart of everything we do. Recovery is found in community.
Whether it’s new guests helping even newer guests with their bags as they arrive, sharing the good, the bad, and the ugly in group sessions, or bunking with a stranger who quickly becomes a close friend, there is a thread that connects everything we do at Discovery Place. We believe it’s easier to find recovery together than alone.
From the moment you commence from our 30-day program, you are welcome back any time as a volunteer. In fact, we encourage it. By volunteering, our former guests stay close to recovery and stay immersed in the community. Past guests help lead step and meditation groups, hear fifth steps, or tell their own stories of recovery.
“This is a family,” says Nick. “A lot of our guys have never, ever, ever felt a part of anything in their life. To go though our program and then to come out and give back to the guy who just got here yesterday—that gives them a sense of purpose they’ve never felt before.”
Every Friday night we encourage friends and family to join us on campus for a 12-step meeting and fellowship. And through our Renewal Program, any time a former guest finds himself struggling in sobriety, he can return for a free week of care before he takes a drink or uses again.
“I constantly tell people—family members, addicts, and alcoholics—that the hardest part of my job is to explain something that can only be experienced. I can’t explain to someone out there in the grips of their addiction, miserable, the peace, serenity and genuine happiness you can receive by starting your life over at Discovery Place,” says Nick. “Nobody does it like us.”
5. What happens after the first 30 days of leaving the addiction center?
The first 30 days are a critical time. But they are just the beginning.
“There are a million and one treatment centers in the United States and you can go to any single one of them and get sober,” says Nick. “But staying sober is where the difficulty comes, and that’s why we’ve designed Discovery Place the way we have. It’s about what happens after [you leave]. If you don’t continue down the path, the chances of staying sober are small.”
Discovery Place is rooted in 12-step recovery. The spiritual principles underlying each of the 12 steps guides everything we do. Guests are not just introduced to the 12 steps, they’re immersed in them. That means daily step groups, 12-step meetings on and off campus, and the opportunity to work several steps in the first 30 days. Our goal is to give each guest the foundation he needs to leave Discovery Place and continue his journey in sobriety immediately, grounded in the familiarity that comes with our 12-step immersion program.
We encourage guests to continue with us for another 30 or 60 days through our Long-Term Recovery Program (LTR). Many guests will then go on to live in nearby sober living homes.
Whether guests continue their time at Discovery Place in LTR, move into sober living, or return home, our Continuing Care team will follow up with each guest throughout his first year. We stay connected and are here to help in any way we can.