I recently heard the CV -19 shutdown referred to as “America’s Invitation to Detox”.

In his sermon entitled, A Family being Formed and Fruitful | Acts 5:12-42 Pastor Dave Tooker makes the example that these weeks without sports, school, travel, in person gatherings or a normal work schedule have been a type of detoxification/rehabilitation program for Americans.

When done correctly, the process of detoxifying and rehabilitating can be miserable.

Withdrawal symptoms are painful. The body goes through a state of shock when the source of addiction has been removed. Anger is often a manifestation of feeling out of control.

Addicts may become hostile towards the person who they perceive took their power and control away from them; often acting in anger, physically harming those around them, using profanity and railing against the universe.

Addicts may become manipulative, making promises to become a better person or quit patterns of bad behavior. The body trembles or aches, sometimes sweating profusely or shaking with chills.

Detoxifying is a terrible process.

The good news is that such a terrible process can achieve remarkably positive results.  If the detoxification process is allowed to play out until the very end, the person “drying out” can literally become transformed in their mind, body and  soul.

The key is to let the process run its due course. We must not circumvent it.

If an addict begs and receives a bailout, the process will be cut short, and the desired results will not be achieved. Sadly, the person can end up in a worse state of mind than ever before, desperately inhaling, drinking, viewing or using their vice until they are in a stupor. No clear mind. No revived spirit. No renewal of any kind.

It’s easy to point fingers at someone who enters into drug or alcohol rehab, but the reality is that modern society has become addicted to many things, most notably, the addiction of always “being on” and always “being entertained”.

Very rarely do we find ourselves alone – all alone – without television, radio, internet or (God forbid) a smartphone.

It’s hard to be alone: Like any good vice, the addiction to constant entertainment dulls the pain of what we might feel if we were to sit alone in the company of only our thoughts and feelings.

We’ve realized that it’s hard to sit still. It’s hard not to have an event to attend, or a ballgame blasting from the living room television screen.

It’s hard to re-adjust to life as a family:  It’s hard getting to know and connect with your children or spouse in a deep and intimate way. Living under one roof and talking to each other using full sentences can be a real challenge for some of us.

We’re off balance: It’s hard to determine our value at work. If we are no longer asked to come into the workplace, we may begin to doubt ourselves or our value to the company. We know that performance pays the bills. When the ability to produce has been removed (or seems in jeopardy), we become restless, angry, fidgety and insecure. When the things that are familiar are removed and we are left alone with ourselves, it can feel very unfamiliar and cause us to feel insecure.

Hurting people hurt others: In our insecurity, we may lash-out in anger at others. Conversely, some of us simply wish to retreat, run, leave, check out. It’s important to recognize our feelings, name them, identify the triggers and modify our reactions.

Healthy people will realize the value of peace, patience, kindness, goodness, gentleness and self-control.   When we name our emotions, releasing them to a Higher Power, only then can we make room for comfort and peace. Jesus said in John 14;27, “Peace I leave with you; my peace I give you. I do not give to you as the world gives. Do not let your hearts be troubled and do not be afraid.”

In light of CV-19, we all have a better understanding of what it is like to lose our perceived sense of control and security.

At Hope Rising, we are all too familiar with the anger and insecurities experienced by children and youth who have lived a lifetime of insecurity. Children of abuse experience severe PTSD and have never had the chance to learn proper coping skills. Instead, they have spent their entire lives in survival mode, trying to avoid the landmines of anger, abuse and rape.

In this eye-opening interview, DrKyle Miller, LPC-S, LMFT-S, Counselor to Sex Trafficking Survivors explains the process a survivor of sex trafficking goes through during the initial stages of rehabilitation. Before we label these children as “troubled youth” and cast them off as hopeless causes, perhaps we should seek to gain a deeper understanding of the environmental factors which led to their current situations.

Children of trafficking and sexual abuse walk a long and lonely road of restoration. Hope Rising’s Model of Wrap-Around Services including Equine Therapy with EAGLA Certified Equine Specialist Gayle Brittain has been proven effective with exceptional long term-results.

The current model of care depends heavily on loving and highly trained foster families to walk this long journey alongside the youth in our care. However, as Dr. Kyle Miller explains on this video, the first 30-90 days are very volatile, and unpredictable. The pressure to flee is so great, that foster families are facing extreme challenges during this initial stage of detox and assessment.

The Emergency Assessment & Stabilization Center  of Greater Houston and the Washington County Emergency Assessement & Stabilization Center are vital to the first 30-90 days following the rescue of a child sex survivor. For more information on how you can support these long-term rehabilitation programs please follow us our social media platforms.  Or email hope@hoperisingministries.org

* Hope Rising is a 501c3 nonprofit anti-sex trafficking and licensed foster care agency specializing in the long-term restoration of children and youth rescued from sex trafficking and abuse.

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