Caring for the Helpless

November 29, 2013


“If no one is willing to care for the helpless what will become of humanity? This need to care should never be used to justify governments in using violent force against us if we don’t care in the governmentally approved way.” ~ Terence T. Gorski




November 29, 2013

By Terence T. Gorski
November 29, 2013 (Update, December 1, 2013) 


Trust can only exist among people. Untrustworthy people hide behind organizations and governments to avoid responsibility for their personal dishonesty.No organization can be trusted. Only the people in the organization can.

Trust must be earned, maintained, and constantly repaired. Trust is not a one time deal. It is a way of life reflecting inner character. Ultimately, trust is based upon the ability to accurately predict what another person is going to do and how they are going to respond in close personal relationships. Inconsistency in important life areas, both support during positive life events and help during rough spots and road bumps in life make people hesitate to trust. If I am not sure how a person will respond, I am not willing to rely too heavily upon him or her.

Trust builds to rigorous honesty –but slowly, step-by-step, over-time. Only a fool trusts and makes themselves vulnerable with people who have not stood the test of time.

Mistakes don’t violate trust. We are fallible human beings. We all make mistakes. We accidentally hurt each other. We can heal and trust can be repaired by making amends.

Deceit that is conscious, deliberate, and repeated is a trust killer. We can forgive, but once betrayed only a fool goes back for more. It is like the Charlie Brown, Lucy, and the football story. Charlie Brown is acting the fool in a psychopaths game. His blind trust in the face of a history of past deceit is just plain dumb.

I DON’T DO OR ENABLE STUPID ANY MORE. No sober and responsible person should.

Reach out a helping hand, but don’t let a one-day sober crack addict live in your house or baby-sit your kids.

Don’t expect people you have lied to, stolen from, and abused to trust you instantly because you are clean and sober for a week. The fact that you expect them to is proof your judgment is so impaired that you can’t be trusted.

“I trust in God. I also lock my car.” ~ KC Hollmer, Navy SEAL, Retired



Defining Ourselves — Selected Quotes by Terry Gorski

November 29, 2013

Here are some quotes posted awhile ago.

Terry Gorski's Blog

Defining Ourselves

Get Credits for reading Gorski’s Books: www,

On Being Sentient

“As a sentient being I can grow beyond my original programming!  Therefore, I can choose who I am what I am to become!” — Data, Star Trek – The Next Generation

Knowledge of Self IS Power

“Knowing others is intelligence; knowing yourself is true wisdom. Mastering of others is strength; mastering yourself is true power. If you realize that you have enough, you are truly rich.” — Tao Te Ching Repeating the Past

If you don’t have a vision for the future, then your future is threatened to be a repeat of the past. – A. R. Bernard

If you don’t know history you are condemned to repeat it. — Unkown

We Are Not Defined By Our Past

We are fallible human beings.  We all make mistakes.  Our mistakes, as painful as they may be, teach us vital…

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Choices and Limits

November 26, 2013



By Terence T. Gorski

We all make choices, but within the limits of the cards we are dealt at birth and the previous decisions we have made.

Recovery is the process of trading in one set of problems for a better set of problems.

As we get better at living a sober and responsible life, the range of choices that are available to us tends to increase. In early recovery many of the choices we face are between the bad (keep drinking drugging and die) and the less bad (stop drinking and drugging and suffer the pain of withdrawal and the pain of facing the consequences of addiction). As we advance in recovery we expand our choices to between good and bad. Eventually we get to where we are making positive choices between “good and better. ”

Unfortunately, our choices are always within limits. Some of the limits are self-created and exist purely with our own minds. Others are very real limits based upon our circumstances of birth, time of history in which we live, the consequences of previous decisions we have made, and the quality of information and role modeling available to us.

Choices – yes, but within limits. Hence the Serenity Prayer: “God grant me the serenity to accept the things I cannot change, the courage to change the things I can, and the wisdom to know the difference.”


Twenty-Five Ideas To Pass Forward To Future Generations

November 26, 2013

Mountain_PeaksBy Terence T. Gorski, November 26, 2012

1. Always strive to make “truth” a part of who you are. Keep asking questions and learning from others. Know your values and never sell yourself out. 

2. Believe in yourself, even when others with degrees and prestigious positions put you down.

3. Respect the core of humanity in everyone.

4. Remember that we all, even the least among us, have an important story to tell. We all have a great story that we are living. All personal growth starts when people tell their story to someone who really listens, understands, takes them seriously, and affirms their story as a valid human experience.

5. Don’t be afraid to work hard. Do what needs to be done, especially the things that other people don’t want to do.

6. Learn from everyone.

7. All true stories end in death. Death grins at us all. The courageous grin back and then break into laughter as they realize it is what it is.

8. Don’t take yourself too seriously. Find the humor in life. Learn to laugh even during the hard times.

9. Remember that common sense is not very common and is often trained out of people by higher education.

10. Most importantly: Illigitimi non carborundum (Don’t let the bastards wear you down).

11. Teach others always and in everything that you do — sometimes use words. Mostly teach by what you do. This is the most effective way to teach.  We always learn the most by teaching others what we know.

12. We all stand on the shoulders of those who have come before us. Build strong shoulders for the next generation to stand on and pass forward your best understanding of the truth.

13. Build others up by pointing out their strengths.

14. Don’t tolerate bullies – for all bullies are cowards at their core.

15. Don’t trust bureaucrats or people who hide behind degrees, past accomplishments, and pleas to authority as their only basis of knowledge.

16. Know that you are a part of the flow of history and that what you do or don’t do makes a difference.

17. Never lose your compassion and empathy.

18. Learn to transcend anger and fear. Take both seriously and when they come to visit, find out what they are there to tell you. Believe what these feelings are telling you and act accordingly.

19. Don’t be afraid to have enemies. All people who do things of importance have enemies. Thank your enemies for forcing you to be your best.

20. Remember that life is but the brief flicker of a candle in the darkness of eternity. Don’t be afraid to burn brightly illuminating as much of the darkness around you as possible.

21. Fools and people of evil intention hate the light and will try to turn yours off. Don’t let them.

22. Love and let others love you, for in the end that is all that really matters.

23. Know that monsters are real. Know also that it is the job of people of good will to fight the monsters. Monsters can be fought and defeated. Never ever let the monsters win. Before committing your life to fighting evil, remember that we can become what we hunt. Don’t let yourself become like the monsters that you are fighting.

24. If you are still breathing it means that there is still something important left for you to do.

25. Don’t go quietly into the night, unless you believe in your heart that it is the right thing for you to do.

Relapse: A Monster In The Recovery Machine

November 23, 2013


By Terence T. Gorski
In sobriety, relapse can sneak up behind us like a phantom in the dark.
There are many warning signs that can lead to relapse. No one thing brings us into recovery and no one thing leads us back into addiction. Recovery is the process of making and then remaking the decision not only to STOP drinking and drugging – but also to start and then maintain a way of life that provides meaning and purpose to us in sobriety. We also need ongoing support for recovery and a willingness to learn new ways of thinking and being. Solutions? Yes! Simple solutions? Don’t I wish!

Relapse is a process that begins long before the first use of alcohol or other drugs. Like an avalanche, the first signs are small and seem insignificant. If ignored the problems leading to relapse keep crashing down hill and growing in strength.

Being alert for the subtle warning signs that lead to relapse is, in my opinion, a critical recovery skill. These relapse warning signs start, not with thoughts or urges to use alcohol or other drugs, but with simple problems and subtle ways of irrational thinking that cause unnecessary pain and problems in recovery. When the pain is severe and the problems overwhelming, addiction sneaks up behind us like a phantom in the dark. The addiction whispers in our ear. It tells us over and over again that the only thing that can stop the pain and solve our problems is using our drug of choice. Then, and only then, comes the addictive thinking and the craving. At that moment, before putting our drug of choice in our bodies, we are in a crisis of sobriety. We are standing hypnotized by the approaching avalanche of addiction. If we don’t awake from the trance in time, we will be crushed.

Simplistic answers to the problem of relapse, in my experience, are comforting but not helpful. We must do the work of learning what this “cunning, baffling, and powerful” disease is doing to us in our sobriety. Once we are sure we have it beat forever, the disease has already won! It is only a matter of time. This is why in my understanding of the 12-Steps, we must work a daily program of rigorous honesty and correct problems as soon as we are aware of them. This early identification and solution of problems is a critical survival skill for those of us who are addicted.

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Addiction Treatment and the Affordable Care Act (ACA)

November 22, 2013

By Celia Vimont
February 26, 2013

An Introduction
By Terence T. Gorski

The following article by By Celia Vimont summarizes the predictions made by Thomas McLellan, PhD, who reported at the 2013 annual meeting of the New York Society of Addiction Medicine that he believes that the Affordable Care Act (ACA) will revolutionize the field of substance abuse treatment.

I am not as optimistic as as Dr. McLellan about the positive impacts of the ACA on overall recovery rates for addiction clients. Here’s why;

1. When addiction services are merged into medical services the addiction tends not be diagnosed and initial referrals are made to individual doctors most who use medication management.

2. Residential Rehabilitation will not be considered an essential services.

3. Brief screening and early intervention will be attempted but relapse rates tend to be high.

4. Stigma and poly-drug abuse that mixes legal and illegal drugs will both deter early voluntary intervention.

Here is the article reporting on Dr. McLellan’s projections, which are far more optimistic than mine.
The ACA Could Provide Substance Abuse Treatment to Millions of New Patients”

“It will have more far-reaching positive consequences for substance abuse treatment than anything in my lifetime, including the discovery of methadone,” he said at the recent annual meeting of the New York Society of Addiction Medicine.

“It will integrate substance abuse treatment into the rest of health care.”

Currently, just 2.3 million Americans receive any type of substance abuse treatment, which is less than one percent of the total population of people who are affected by the most serious of the substance use disorders—addiction, said Dr. McLellan, who is a former Deputy Director of the White House Office of National Drug Control Policy.

Most who receive treatment are severely affected, he said.
“If diabetes were treated like substance abuse, only people in the most advanced stages of illness would be covered, such as those who had already lost their vision or had severe kidney damage,” he said.

A. Thomas McLellan, PhD
Dr. McLellan reported that 23 million American adults suffer from substance abuse or dependence—about the same number of adults who have diabetes.

An additional 60 million people engage in “medically harmful” substance use, such as a woman whose two daily glasses of wine fuels growth of her breast cancer. The new law will allow millions more people to receive treatment, including those whose substance abuse is just emerging.

Under the ACA, substance abuse treatment will also become part of primary care, and will be focused more on prevention.

Substance abuse treatment will also be considered an “essential service,” meaning health plans are required to provide it. They must treat the full spectrum of the disorder, including people who are in the early stages of substance abuse. “There will be more prevention, early intervention and treatment options,” he said. “The result will be better, and less expensive, outcomes.”

By the end of 2014, under the ACA, coverage of substance use disorders is likely to be comparable to that of other chronic illnesses, such as hypertension, asthma and diabetes. Government insurers (Medicare and Medicaid) will cover physician visits (including screening, brief intervention, assessment, evaluation and medication), clinic visits, home health visits, family counseling, alcohol and drug testing, four maintenance and anti-craving medications, monitoring tests and smoking cessation.

Currently, federal benefits, such as Medicaid and Medicare, focus on inpatient services, like detox programs, but do not cover office visits for substance abuse treatments. In contrast, Medicaid covers 100 percent of diabetes-related physician visits, clinic visits and home health visits, as well as glucose tests, monitors and supplies, insulin and four other diabetes medications, foot and eye exams, and smoking cessation for diabetics.

“These are all primary care prevention and management services, which are the most effective and cheapest way of managing illness,” he said.

The impact of these new rules will be quite substantial, since an estimated 65 percent of insured Americans are covered by Medicaid or Medicare, and the rest are covered by insurance companies that base their benefits structure on federal benefits, said Dr. McLellan.

As addiction becomes treated as a chronic illness, pharmaceutical companies will be much more interested in developing new medications, he added.

“Immense markets are being created,” he said. “Until now, there have been about 13,000 treatment providers for substance use disorders, and less than half of those are doctors. Now, 550,000 primary care doctors, in addition to nurses who can prescribe medications, will be caring for these patients.”



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