Helping Addicts Find Meaning and Purpose

By The Fix staff 12/03/19

While addicts may enter Ardú feeling lost and broken, many leave with a sense of purpose, direction and a newfound hope.

silhouette of man with outstretched arms at sunrise
Photo by Shane Rounce on Unsplash

Located in Provo, Utah, Ardú Recovery Center has established itself as a leader in drug and alcohol treatment industry. They play an important role in the community as well as being a go to resource that is capable of assisting those in need of detoxification services who also have complex existing medical conditions. I spoke with Jory Hatfield, Clinical Director at Ardú Recovery Center to try and understand more about Ardú's philosophy toward treatment once clients exit detox and begin the residential treatment phase. 

Jory has had experience both as a client and an employee at various treatment centers. It was a combination of his lived experience with heroin addiction and a discovered passion for psychology that lead him to the work he does now. 

Jory explains, "I went into pre-dental when I was 19, but that was more because of the money, not because I really wanted to be a dentist. Then I took a psychology class and I just found it fascinating. I fell in love with psychology in college. So I changed my major to psychology, but addiction therapy wasn't even on my radar at that time. Two months after changing my major I got addicted to heroin. I wound up in jail for a year and I just read the whole time. It turns out I was preparing addiction education groups seven years before I even gave one."

A Unique Experience

When asked about what motivates and guides his particular approach toward Addiction Therapy Jory said, "I've been a client in some horrible treatment centers and I've worked in horrible treatment centers. There was always something that didn't feel right. I'd say at least 75 percent of the treatment centers out there are missing the mark. We're trying to offer the best product possible at Ardú, and to make sure we give our best to the population we serve." 

One of the most unique things about Ardú is the base therapeutic manual they use that was written by Jory and another staff member. 

"We have an 80 page manual that is completely original. It consists of seven phases. The first phase and the last phase are required but in between we custom build a treatment plan. The last one that we really focus on is that we look at Logotherapy, purpose and meaning. Finding that purpose and meaning in suffering. What I see a lot of times is that people who come in are missing that purpose and meaning in their lives, and you can have all the knowledge in the entire planet and be the world's expert on addiction but if there's no purpose behind it then you won't stay sober. We really break that down and make sure people leave with at least a path that pulls from all the pain and experience they've had with addiction to really be true to themselves and to go into that career or that lifestyle or set those goals that are in line with the individual." Jory explained that Logotherapy was developed by Holocaust survivor Viktor Frankl, and it is built on the premise that having a sense of meaning is a primary motivating factor in humans. 

This was a really refreshing conversation to have with someone working in the addiction treatment field. Of course everyone is different and what works for one addict may not work for another, but Ardú’s approach seems to be one of dignity and empowerment. People enter treatment at varying stages of addiction, but at a certain point the sufferer is completely disconnected from the world they live in and even from themselves. When the storm of active use clears, many find themselves completely lost. Having a supportive system to help the addicted person reestablish themselves is crucial, and from what Jory has said it sounds like Ardú is an ideal place to start. There is an undeniable respect for the personal experience of the addict, and hope in that regardless of what someone has been through, there is purpose and meaning that can come from it. This writer suspects that some strange alchemy is occurring in Provo, Utah. While addicts may enter Ardú feeling lost and broken, many leave with a sense of purpose, direction and a newfound hope. Entering Ardú Recovery Center could very well be a life changing experience. 

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