Quite often the first time a person goes into rehab they’re not really ready for it. Drugs are used to cope with severe trauma. Rehab involves therapy, looking at what’s being hidden and why. So the road to recovery can be a terrifying leap into the unknown. Rehab is only for a short period but it takes time to build trusting relationships where women feel they can talk about such personal things.
A real turning point for Zara was receiving a letter from her mum. She couldn’t bear to let go and wanted to rebuild their relationship. Zara was very unwell in hospital at the time and it was at that point that she felt she really needed to go to rehab. So, I was able to make a funding application on her behalf.
Zara tried rehab a few years ago but it didn’t work out. Rehab’s not a magic wand. It usually takes several attempts and I try to make sure women don’t feel they’ve failed. I explain to them that it often doesn’t happen first time. It stops them from beating themselves up or thinking ‘Oh, there’s no point in going back, because I’m not going to achieve it’.
It is a rocky road, and I think it is particularly difficult for the women we work with because of what they’ve experienced. Part of their healing process involves acknowledging some of these experiences, and some of that is just so painful for them. A woman once asked me ‘Who will put me back together if I fall apart?’
So we keep going. When a woman is ready, we’re here for them.