Lives Transformed: First Chance Sobering Station
Hank* was admitted to First Chance on a DUI charge – his second DUI arrest in two years. Hank's first arrest was not a concern to him because the charge was dropped to “wet and reckless.” This time, Hank hit a stop sign in a blackout, but still did not believe he had an alcohol problem and he was sure he was not an alcoholic. He just "drank too much one night."
At his intake, Hank was cooperative but very much in denial about the extent of his drinking. While resting in the dorm and lounge area of First Chance, Hank began to read the numerous pamphlets focused on alcohol-related issues. He read every one he could find.
At his exit interview, the counselor confronted Hank about his drinking. He challenged him to look at his drinking behavior. By the time Hank walked out of First Chance he had come to believe he was an alcoholic and that he should stop drinking immediately. He began to take responsibility for his actions and stated he would use his insurance to seek help. Hank agreed to have a First Chance Counselor follow up with him at a later date to see how he was doing.
During the first follow-up phone contact, Hank admitted to being a "binge drinker". He stated he had not had a drink since his arrest and had gone to at least one AA meeting every day. Even though he did $15,000 damage to his vehicle, he still feels great because he is not drinking and his life is getting better. Hank stated that because he did not want to risk his well-being and jeopardize other's safety, sobriety is his only option.
Several calls later, Hank related that he was continuing to attend AA meetings and was not drinking. During one phone call his wife answered the phone and stated that whatever Hank was told at First Chance had "saved their marriage." Their home life and relationship had dramatically improved, and she said, "He's a different person." Hank and his wife attribute the change to First Chance's exit interview process. "It was very powerful and inspiring. Thank you First Chance."
*Names and identifying features have been changed to protect client confidentiality.