Sobriety for All
Recovery for LGBTQ+ Individuals

Members of the LGBTQ+ community face a unique set of challenges that lead to an increased susceptibility to substance abuse and dependence. Not only do members of this community experience discrimination, social stigma and a lack of acceptance, but they also experience a greater amount of physical, mental and emotional abuse and harassment. These stressors contribute to a greater risk factor when it comes to addiction — and because being a minority and struggling with substance abuse are both isolating experiences, it can be even more difficult for members of this community to reach out for help. If you are a member of the LGBTQ+ community and you have been struggling with alcoholism or drug addiction, you are certainly not alone. The good news is that numerous addiction treatment programs — including those provided by Guardian Recovery Network — take the unique circumstances that people in this community face into account. We remain dedicated to providing the most individualized and focused care available.

Addiction in the LGBTQ+ Community

Substance abuse rates are higher among sexual minorities. The National Institute on Drug Abuse reports, “More than a third (37.6 percent) of sexual minority adults 18 and older reported past year marijuana use, compared to 16.2% reported by the overall adult population. Past year opioid use (including misuse of prescription opioids or heroin use) was also higher with 9% of sexual minority adults aged 18 or older reporting use compared to 3.8% among the overall adult population. Additionally, 9% of sexual minority adults aged 26 or older reported past year misuse of prescription opioids—an increase from the 6.4% who reported misuse in 2017. However, there was a significant decline in past year prescription opioid misuse among sexual minority adults aged 18-25 with 8.3% reporting use in 2018.” Despite this decline young adults who are in the LGBTQ+ community face higher rates of addiction, often because they are significantly impacted by family rejection and the rejection of their peers.

If you have been struggling with addiction and you are lesbian, gay, bisexual, transgender, queer or questioning, you are not alone. There are thousands of people just like you who have sought professional treatment, successfully overcome adversity and gone on to lead healthy, happy and substance-free lives.

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Addiction Treatment for the LGBTQ+ Community

Members of the LGBTQ+ community experience unique challenges that must be thoroughly addressed in addiction treatment, including bullying related to sexual orientation, discrimination by certain organizations and in the workplace, homophobia and transphobia, social isolation and family issues. Members of this community are also more likely to suffer from dual diagnosis disorders than members of the general population.

At Guardian we keep the following in mind when treating any one of our individual clients:

  • Individualized Care – People have a variety of experiences with active addiction, which is why a one-size-fits-all approach to recovery is never beneficial. Someone who identifies as gay might have a completely different experience than someone who identifies as heterosexual. We always make sure that our clients have access to the unique resources and services they need to heal on a physical, mental and emotional basis while having the opportunity to learn from and rely on like-minded people.
  • Demographic Specific Options – It is beneficial for people to be broken up into demographic-specific therapeutic groups while in treatment. This allows for people to open up about personal experiences they might not otherwise feel comfortable opening up about. It also allows our clients to begin building healthy, functional and mutually beneficial friendships with members of their own community.
  • Caring, Diverse Professionals – It is important that the staff members at each one of our individual facilities come from a diverse set of personal backgrounds. This rings true for every level of clinical care we provide, including medically monitored detox, residential inpatient treatment, partial hospitalization and intensive outpatient treatment. We want our clients to feel comfortable at all times, and many of our LGBTQ+ clients find that they are more comfortable opening up to a staff member who is a member of their same community or who has a close family member that is. At Guardian Recovery Network we believe in the power of diversity.

Our Drug & Alcohol Treatment Services Include


Available Resources for Sexual Minorities

There are many recovery resources available for members of the LGBTQ+ community.

LGBTQ+ Recovery Resources:

For a more comprehensive list of resources in your immediate area, contact Guardian Recovery Network today.

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Trauma-Informed Care

At Guardian Recovery Network we understand that members of certain demographics are more likely to have been exposed to traumatic experiences over the course of their lives. Members of the LGBTQ+ community experience trauma more frequently than their heterosexual peers, according to a study published by the National Child Traumatic Stress Network. Much of the trauma that members of this community face happens during their youth (by way of verbal, physical and emotional abuse at home, severe bullying, harassment and discrimination in education and sexual abuse). An article published by the American Psychiatric Association reads, “About three quarters of LGBTQ students report having been harassed at school; even worse, 35% have experienced physical assault, and 12% have been the victim of sexual violence at school. Harassment and assault, especially when it occurs in what should be a safe and supportive setting, can have serious impacts on mental health such as fear, anxiety, depression and post-traumatic stress disorder (PTSD). A National School Climate Survey (2017) from all 50 states, the District of Columbia and the U.S. territories reported an increase in acts of intimidation, bias, and violence against LGBTQ students at school. In the wake of the 2016 election and aftermath of the Administration’s decisions against LGBTQ students, many schools have become even more hostile towards transgender and gender nonconforming youth.”

At Guardian Recovery Network we understand how trauma can impact the overall quality of life, and the majority of our therapeutic professionals have extensive experience providing trauma-informed care.

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    At Guardian Recovery Network we know that recovery is always possible no matter who you are or what you have experienced. Our comprehensive and highly individualized programs offer demographic-specific treatment options that allow for the most focused clinical care available. Because members of the LGBTQ+ community often have a unique set of experiences and face very specific challenges, a specially designed treatment program is beneficial. Of course, the impacts of active addiction are relatively similar across the board — everyone who struggles with active addiction experiences physical, mental, emotional and spiritual repercussions. This is why each level of clinical care we provide focuses on integrated healing through intensive behavioral therapy and holistic treatment options. To learn more about addiction treatment for members of the LGBTQ+ community, contact us today.

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