Dr. Barnes and Dr. Wilson personally answer the phones from 8:00AM until 5:00PM (PST) everyday.
In U.S. & Canada: 888-541-6350
In Southern California, Nationally, or Internationally, call:

July 17, 2011 Newsletter

“What works for ending alcohol abuse?”

What everyone knows” is simply wrong when it comes to ending drinking problems. “Everyone” knows that AA and the 12 Steps and going off to 30, 60, or 90 days of treatment “works”.

Reality? They don’t. Unless you consider a “success” rate of under 5% as working.

So what does work?

The following is a list of options from most to least effective and is updated from the “Handbook of Alcoholism Treatment Approaches” by Miller and Hester, 2003.

1.  Brief Interventions;
2.  Motivational Enhancement;
3.  Community Reinforcement;
4.  Self-Change Manual;
5.  Naltrexone;
6.  Behavioral Self-Control;
7.  Behavior Contracting;
8.  Social Skills Training;
9.  Marital Therapy – Behavioral;
10. Aversive therapy;
11. Case Management;
12. Cognitive Therapy;

27. Group Counseling;

36. Minnesota Model Treatment
37. 12 Step Facilitation;
38. AA;

47. Alcoholism Counseling.

Potential clients always ask why our clients’ success rate is up to 20 times higher (65% or more) than any of the traditional programs.

The reason for our clients’ success is clear from the above review of effective approaches. We use components 1-9 and 11-12 in a personally adjusted mix that is designed specifically for you and your life.

Traditional treatment programs use approaches 36-38 and 47. Guess what? These approaches not only don’t work, they actually prevent people from recovering!

Let’s forget failed treatment methods along with these myths:

1. You are powerless;
2. You need go away to residential treatment;
3. You need to “hit bottom”;
4. AA works;
5. Alcohol abuse is a “disease”;
6. You need to be “in recovery”;
7. You’re “in denial”.

If you’re ready to avoid, or stop, being victimized by these treatment industry lies, and to recover privately, affordably, effectively, and confidentially, then you’re ready to give us a call!

You can’t just stop drinking!

Spouses, other family members, and friends frequently wonder why you just can’t quit. The short answer is that you drink because it “works” as a short term solution for whatever it is you’re self-medicating.

You can’t just quit unless you find alternative ways to address loneliness, boredom, anxiety, hormone shifts, pain, and so on. You’ve been using alcohol to avoid fixing these underlying conditions so now you either address them or you will inevitibly go back to drinking.

Most treatment fails to address anything that matters to you. The only solution they offer, “don’t drink, go to AA” is one with a 75 year history of failure.

We use the effective approaches we listed above to help you buold a life that leaves no room, or need, for alcohol abuse.

No, it’s not rocket science – it’s the development of new day-to-day skills and activities that fix the problems you were medicating in ways that are more satisfactory than alcohol’s temporary relief.

Working with us is a matter of squeezing alcohol out of your life in a systematic and satisfying way until alcohol abuse becomes just another “been there, done that” bad habit that you left behind.

That really starts whenever you call, so why wait?

Links to Success:

Smart Women and Alcohol Abuse

“How Can You Possibly Cure My Years of Alcohol Abuse in Just 5 Days?”

The Real “Steps” to Overcoming Alcohol Abuse

Ten Things I Wish I’d Known Before I Sent My Brother Off To Rehab;

Odds and Ends

Alcohol Abuse, Alcoholism, and 12 Step Programs That Can’t Tell the Difference, don’t care, and will gladly burden you with inappropriate and damaging labels that will haunt you for the rest of your life.

Women and Alcohol – What To Consider In Treatment  and why women need and deserve services built around women’s needs, not just another recycled (and failed) men’s program – which is all anyone else has to offer.

Confidentiality, why you want to avoid residential treatment and groups of all kinds.

The Bucket of Crabs or Why AA and Al-Anon are Bad For Your Health.

By |2016-11-14T06:14:12+00:00July 17th, 2011|Newsletters|4 Comments


  1. September 18, 2011 Newsletter September 19, 2011 at 11:58 am

    […] AA Doesn’t Work, So What Does? […]

  2. September 15, 2011 Newsletter September 25, 2011 at 11:12 am

    […] AA Doesn’t Work, So What Does? […]

  3. Rachel Allen October 15, 2012 at 2:20 pm

    AA never worked for me. Never. All that talk about alcohol at 8:00 p.m. only made me want to drink. However, I have found something that seems to be working, not only in helping me to moderate my drinking, but also in helping me to become more fit and healthy in general.

    Here’s what is working magic for me: working out. I don’t mean the one-mile walk around the neighborhood each day; I’m referring to joining a gym, learning to use all the various machines and what muscles they strengthen–then using them. I do a minimum of 3 days per week, and when I work out, I keep track of the weight used and the repetitions–and before and after each machine workout, I do 15 minutes on the treadmill–not too fast, not too slow–and that 30 minutes equates to appx. 1 1/2 mile.

    Not only has working out starting making me feel better, but my clothes are starting to slip on easier (I’m overweight); also, I am meeting active people my own age (60s) who are working out, and seeing the excellent shape they’re in has been a true motivation–and I’m making new friends.

    Moreover, I’m starting to get a little obsessed with it, spending much time researching workout routines, etc. on the internet–instead of sitting around, bored and lonely, drinking until I pass out. With the workout routine, I am eating 6 small meals per day–not only am I never hungry, but neither do I have the strong cravings for alcohol.

    My life has started taking shape–in more ways than one, and I wanted to share what is working for me; maybe it will work for others. Blessings to Dr. Mary Ellen and Dr. Ed for continuing to send me these newsletters even though I was unable to take advantage of their program–their confidence in people like me and others like me has truly helped me move up, move out, and move ahead.
    Thank you,

  4. Dr. Mary Ellen Barnes & Dr. Ed Wilson October 15, 2012 at 2:36 pm

    Congratulations, Rachel! That is so great. I love working out too. I think it helps lots of things – depression, drinking problems, weight and also it makes women feel so much more powerful – which of course, we are!

Leave A Comment

Important This site makes use of cookies which may contain tracking information about visitors. By continuing to browse this site you agree to our use of cookies.