Jerri Jorgensen explains how Desert Solace’s inpatient treatment program was designed to help pornography addicts change habits and mindsets to hasten recovery.
Recently, Jerri Jorgensen, co-founder of addiction treatment facility Desert Solace, explained how the treatment facility built their inpatient program to meet the unique needs of their clients.
On the In My Head podcast, Jorgensen discussed her husband’s journey towards recovery from his own pornography addiction, and how the lessons the couple learned have informed the way they operate Desert Solace in their quest to help others recover from their own addictions.
Jorgensen said that when one works with addicts, one must remember that “this is their experience.”
“You get to have the conversation with them: ‘Is this going to work in your life?’” If the answer is “no,” said Jorgensen, the next prompt should be, “‘let’s go for something that works.’”
For Jorgensen and her husband, “something that works” involved therapy and inpatient treatment. After working on themselves as a couple and as individuals, the Jorgensens found peace in recovery. They then made it their mission to pass on what they had learned to help others by opening Desert Solace.
At Desert Solace, clients entering the inpatient treatment program can spend 90 days away from the stressors of their daily lives to focus on personal growth and recovery.
Jorgensen explained how the inpatient treatment program builds upon proven methods to help clients work through their addictions.
“They say it takes 45 days just to start changing brain paths,” said Jorgensen, referring to the changes addiction makes to the brain. “The other 45 days (are) to really instill all those beliefs about themselves — of who they really are,” she continued. “Not who they’ve been told they are.”
Throughout their stay at Desert Solace, residents will share living space, meals, and accountability as they work towards recovery hand-in-hand.
“They stay at our house,” said Jorgensen. “It’s a lovely house. We’re licensed for 16 beds, but we like to keep it no bigger than 12. We just feel like we can treat them better,” she explained.
“We’re on 5 acres. We have horses. They’re assigned a horse when they get in to care for. We do equine therapy, which is a whole other thing; it’s amazing.”
Additionally, residents build good health and a mind-body connection by eating healthily and exercising.
“[Our residents] eat healthy. We have a chef. They go to yoga, they work out, they do some kind of physical activity six days a week.”
In addition to benefiting their physical health, this exercise helps residents rebuild their self-esteem, which is often damaged due to shame from addiction.
“Guys that come in, and they’ve just let their bodies go,” Jorgensen said, “they’re just — ‘Why should I take care of my body? I’m a piece of crap.’” In order to overcome these ideas, Jorgensen explained that Desert Solace’s programming seeks to “treat them physically (and) spiritually.”
Aside from on-site activities, residents go into town for errands, to go to church services, and to visit the gym. If temptation to engage in addictive behaviors arises during these trips, residents are able to turn to one another for help staying accountable.
“They have three or four group meetings a day, plus individual therapy,” said Jorgensen. She added that during the group sessions, “there’s just like a band of brothers. … You’re in it together. And they get it.”
With pornography addiction specifically, this sense of human connection can be a great bridge to overcoming shame.
“The advice to the suffering is that they reach out,” said Jorgensen. “The days of isolating are over. There [are] people out there that … think, ‘I’m the only one,’” she continued. “Oh my gosh. This is a pandemic.”
After the inpatient session is over and residents return to their daily lives, Desert Solace connects them to sponsors and therapists in their areas and provides weekly conference calls to help them stay focused on their goals.
“The guys that stay connected to us — and they may not make the call every week — but they stay connected. Maybe they start with a therapist and go once a week, then it goes down to twice a month, once a month,” explained Jorgensen. “[For] the guys that do that: we’re at a hundred percent recovery.”
While people in recovery may still have “bumps in the road,” Jorgensen explained that as long as they’re able to stay accountable and keep up with therapy and sponsors as needed, they’re making progress in their lives.
“We are not about perfection,” said Jorgensen. “I mean, we’re working towards connection.”
Desert Solace is an inpatient addiction treatment center in St. George, Utah. Desert Solace specializes in the treatment of pornography and sex addictions. Additionally, they offer treatment programs for gaming, gambling and substance abuse. Their inpatient facility for porn, sex, gaming, gambling and substance addictions features professional, licensed counselors, a top-rated chef, equine therapy and more. Desert Solace believes in involving the client’s family in the recovery process.
1239 West 4200 North
St. George, UT 84770, USA
Note: Article contributed by KHTS AM 1220 & 98.1 FM