Hooked on “Recovery Road”

Recovery Road, a teenage drama about recovering from the disease of addiction, premiered last night on the channel, Freeform, formerly ABC Family. I was interested to watch the show since it’s the first to be centered around a teenager dealing with addiction. I think it delivered, and I plan to keep watching. It was a very full first episode that provided a fairly accurate portrayal of substance abuse and the disease cycle for adult characters in the show as well as teens with teasers here and there for the unraveling story to come as the season progresses. Maddie, a high school student, will be living in an adult sober living house as a consequence of a water bottle full of vodka being found in her locker at school. Her concerned guidance counselor, who we later find out has been in recovery herself for twelve years, arranges for treatment to give Maddie an alternative to expulsion from school.

One of the more moving moments of the show for me was an exchange between Vern, a resident in the sober living house, and Maddie when she returns from sneaking out after curfew.  After Vern expresses his concern for her, Maddie asks him, “You don’t even know me. Why do you care?” Vern replies, “One day, you’re gonna have a moment like this with someone else…sharing your experience. That’s how it works, and it does work.” It struck me that this is not only a good description of what works in recovery, but also what works in life. Sharing our stories with one another and caring enough about each other to help is what works.

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