In this article, we’ve used D&A as short-hand to refer to drug & alcohol / substance use/abuse – knowing that not all of this will apply, but just to give as broad a picture as possible :

Q. I am determined / my loved-one is determined to withdraw from D&A. Looks like a stay at the Retreat would really help with that?

A. Our answer would be – quite possibly later – but most definitely not now. Taranaki Retreat does not cater for rehab or detox patients and we aren’t a clinical facility. If you or a loved one are looking to break free from substances, the D&A service at Te Whatu Ora Taranaki or primary healthcare agency (for example, Tui Ora) is the first contact that should be made. They will provide you with all the resources necessary to tackle addiction – or contact numbers / websites / places to reach out to for this crucial service. We may be able to involved later, as we said – for example, some solutions are based on a plan for “Social detox” after the clinical support around withdrawal has been taken care of. This can look like a phased process or returning to home or community, and figuring out what the next chapter is going to look like, with the right supports. Alternatively, engaging with our ‘Outreach Support’ programme alongside clinical services could be the right call. Interested? Ask for more info.

Q. My loved-one/I’m in the process of withdrawing, and determined to succeed, but the environment at home is causing risk of relapse. Looks like I might be safe there?

A. Let’s talk this over. A good period of sobriety from alcohol and drugs and sometimes this is the right call – possibly for something like day visits / Outreach visits from a member of our Team / working towards a stay. Early on in getting on top of stuff, though, the best way to stay safe is to engage with a Rehab service such as Bridge; it is their speciality – whereas our particular objectives are quite different : to provide a breathing space and to focus on Suicide Prevention work for our community.

Q. It’s only weed, and I’ll be fine without it; in fact, I’d appreciate the opportunity to have a break from it, so that I can change my habits.

A. Taranaki Retreat does not function as a rehab service. It goes without saying that cannabis is a highly addictive substance, and stopping using it isn’t the easiest; we’d strongly recommend talking to your local A&D service and getting some tools and resources in the bag to tackle this the right way.. Taranaki Retreat is not the place to attempt to go cold turkey as the results may trigger or affect other Guests staying at the same time – and will certainly divert you from the core purpose of being here.

Q. I have been drinking quite a LOT lately, if I’m really honest, but I’ll be fine without for my stay.

A. As with cannabis (above) Taranaki Retreat is not the place to test whether you can cope without regular use of a substance. Please engage with your local A&D service; get the right help and support (it’s doable – but of course, much more doable if there’s the right supports around you). Remember that, while you’re finding your way through this – we can be alongside you through our Outreach Programme.

Q. Is there a helpline I can ring about my loved-one’s or my own drug/alcohol use?

A. – 0800 787 797

Kia kaha… we look forward to hearing from you further.