How to empower families with empathy and words to battle addiction

BY Michael Hill, Correspondent |

A program called NJ Connect for Recovery uses Dr. Robert Meyers’ approach to intervention through empathy, compassion, love and understanding. It’s called CRAFT: Community Reinforcement and Family Training.

REALTED: A different approach to intervene and get a substance user to treatment

Lynda McDonald’s son suffered from addiction. He began using when he was 12. Despite facilitating family and other workshops for more than a decade, there was no breakthrough with her now 25 year old.

Over time, McDonald says she learned to listen more and to change her vocabulary. More open conversations led to McDonald’s son initiating his own path to treatment.

For the past two years, she’s been running 12-week long CRAFT meetings. She introduces scores of other parents to a better way to achieve those breakthroughs that lead to recovery from substance use disorder.

The center fields about 100 calls a week. It spends on average 20 minutes per call to make sure the callers have been heard.