Julie D. Bruno Psy.D.
It takes an average of 7 attempts to remain abstinent from drugs/alcohol before an individual is able to be truly successful. The question I am most often asked by potential clients is: How long do you think it will take me to stop abusing drug/alcohol? How long will I need some form of treatment e.g. AA, NA, individual therapy, detox and/or inpatient treatment? My retort is always the same, "How long have you been abusing drugs/alcohol? Whatever that number is, that's how long it will take at minimum for your automatic thoughts to lessen significantly. The analogy I often give to my clients is this: If I told you starting tomorrow you could never use your feet to walk, you could only walk on your knees, how many times would you try to walk on your feet? How many automatic thoughts would you have? What would your resistance be like?