An estimated 20 to 30 percent of the LGBTQ community abuses substances, compared to about 9 percent the population as a whole, according to the Substance Abuse and Mental Health Services Administration.
Drinking can begin at a young age for gay identified individuals. Often drinking is a form of self preservation, hiding a secret (living in the closet) can be very painful. Drinking can begin as an escape from the pain, stress and shame of harboring secret thoughts.
As someone develops into an adult, it is common that a social network develops around bars. This pattern isn’t unique to the gay community. Many social sub-groups have patterns of meeting up at bars – just look at the hockey team, poker league, and weekend softball tournaments. Drinking is a social glue for many social networks.
The LGBT community has a lot of addiction, and as a result it also has a lot of members in recovery. Most larger cities have very vibrant LGBT recovery communities, complete with 12-step meetings specifically for gay orientated persons in recovery. One of the largest drivers of successful recovery is the community that someone builds to help them recover. LGBT 12-step meetings are a great place to start building that community of friends in recovery.
A fantastic resource for finding LGBT meetings is Gay and Sober. LGBT resource centers, found in most larger cities almost always have LGBT focused recovery meetings. Gay meetings can be found in New York City, and in Suffolk County, NY, Fire Island, Bridgehampton, Southhampton, East Hampton, Sag Harbor, and in Nassau County in Dix Hills and Bohemia.
At Suntra we work with many LGBT identified individuals. We come from a place of acceptance and understanding. We know what it was like to be young, defining who you are, and to grow older in the LGBT community. We understand that sexuality is not always clearly defined, and that addiction and drug use is not easily defined either.
At Suntra Modern Recovery, we accept who you are, where every you are.
Adam Banks is a certified recovery coach and interventionist at Suntra Modern Recovery. He received an MBA from the University of Chicago and built a company which United Health Care acquired. He learned his rigor and attention to detail from his career as an airline pilot, holding an ATP, the FAA’s highest license.
Suntra Modern Recovery provides medical treatment for alcohol and opiate addictions via video visit with medical doctors. Suntra’s alcohol and drug intervention services are available in New York, Long Island, and the Hamptons. Treatment for opiate and heroin addiction, including Suboxone treatment, can start today.