Treating addicts: The tension between drug treatment and abstinence

January 20, 2016 | Christine Vestal, The Washington Post Featured

Marvin Seppala wrote a book on conquering drug addiction with counseling and group therapy.

The spiritual, abstinence-based strategy pioneered by Alcoholics Anonymous and adopted by Narcotics Anonymous helped him overcome his own alcohol and cocaine addiction when he was 19. As medical director of Minnesota’s Hazelden clinic, he watched it work for patients.

He believed in it — and then he changed his mind.

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