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  • Michael ONeal

A New Name, A New Day In Recovery

Updated: May 26



Since the dawn of (at least recorded history) alcoholism has been a problem that has plagued humanity. Over the last hundreds of years, various means of alcohol rehab have been tried:


  • Stockades and humiliation

  • The early and quickly faded mutual support group called the Washingtonians

  • AA and the 'medical model' alcoholism treatment centers that are gateways to life in AA

  • Medication that makes you ill if you drink alcohol

  • Alternative support groups for AA like SMART, Life Ring, and SOS

  • The highly effective but profoundly harsh Sinclair Method

  • And many more besides

All of them (even the stockades, when understood within historical context) have been meant to help. But with the exception of the Sinclair Method, none can truly claim a strong track record. And with the incredible side effects and emotional numbness a good deal of experience from Sinclair, too few stay with it to call it a real success either.


But besides a low success rate, all of these approaches share one or both of the following features: And they clearly explain why their rates of success are low:

  • None of this is based on research and development

  • And/or they don't treat the entirety of alcoholism

Serious research into alcoholism, both medical and psychological, is relatively new. The results that research has produced too often remain within the confines of academia. The recovery field continues, by and large, to emphasize the quasi-religious approach of AA, adapting only bits and pieces of what research has offered up as adjunctive therapies.


Never satisfied with the outcomes I was seeing, I kept searching for more ways to help, adding each thing I found from research to the basic approach to recovery. Fortunately, serving as the director of the alcoholism treatment programs I worked at, I was able to have my way. Despite the initial resistance I often encountered from staff and colleagues, I persisted, and with each adaptation recovery rates improved.


The ReNova Method is the culmination of that effort, built through a 3 decade career of helping people recover. It is based on research and gradual careful development, and it addresses all the aspects of alcoholism at the same time. That is why it works.


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