Stories of Recovery
The professional clinical team don’t just treat the symptoms of addiction and depression but work collaboratively with clients to heal some of our deepest wounds.
I am grateful for my sobriety every day. I am proud of how naturally focused I have become and the choices I am now able to make. My 18- and 20-year-old sons both love and respect me, and we have amazing, sensible, open, frank, honest and caring conversations about all manner of subjects. I even supervised and mentored my son's 70 learner driving hours. My 13- and 10-year-old sons are growing up in a house where drugs and alcohol are respected and spoken of freely and accurately.
I was dropped at your front door by a friend, and remember being in a very dark place, and being very scared. I walked in and was greeted by one of the warmest smiles you will ever see. You allowed me to put on paper things that I have never been able to talk about to anyone before. You changed my world and my life; it is something I can never repay you for. Everybody at South Pacific Private should be very proud of what they do, because they change and save lives, they perform miracles.
I entered South Pacific Private in a bad way. With a history of sexual, physical and emotional abuse from childhood, I had reached a point where I thought the only option was self-harm and suicide. While not always easy, I put a lot of work into my recovery. I unlocked deep trauma that I had blocked out. My therapist was amazing, pushing me, yet nurturing me. While I had a lot of fear when I entered, I left with tools that will aid my ongoing recovery. Leaving South Pacific Private, I walked away with dignity, a greater understanding of my mind and a new found respect for my life. Take the step, you’re worth recovery.
My three weeks at South Pacific Private challenged me in so many ways. As uncomfortable as I felt holding up the magnifying glass to my life and behaviours, the program and my time there was such a beautiful experience. You helped me to find my strength and to accept myself as I am. I’m not perfect. I make mistakes but being able to live my life with freedom, choice and love is an absolute gift. Thank you for all that you do, you are an incredible establishment and a wonderful team of people. I feel blessed to have walked away with so many tools and amazing advice from South Pacific Private that I apply to my life on a daily basis.
The program and experience is intentionally designed around creating a safe, healing community, which in itself is a big part of the healing that takes place. In most ways it hardly feels like a hospital. Being part of a compassionate, supportive community as part of treatment helped to break down cycles and patterns of behaviour and give me the strength to go into a brighter future, which I deserve. My life is enriched, my compassion and empathy have increased and my understanding of self, others and life has grown. Thank you.
I ended up at South Pacific out of complete despair. I was smoking about $500 of ice a day.
South Pacific Private has shown me that there is hope, there is recovery and a light at the end of the tunnel does exist. A little persistence and combined with the tools I now have, I see a future. I cannot express enough my gratitude for setting my life back – bigger than ever before.
I was a party girl throughout my twenties and took pride in being able to drink with the boys, often continuing when others had stopped. I had also worked my way through most of the harder drugs available and was tired and miserable. My boyfriend said in exasperation, “Can’t you see that alcohol has been a part of every bad thing that has happened in your life?” Years later, he left me. “Why don’t you go to Alcoholics Anonymous?” were his parting words. I realised I needed help. I couldn’t fix it myself. South Pacific Private’s program gave so much insight into what was happening in my life and taught me how to move forward. People who come to the rooms of AA & NA have the gift of compassion. We’ve experienced desperation and can relate to those who are suffering. Nobody needs to face this battle alone.
Staying connected to South Pacific Private via the Day Programs was a game-changer. I have done the work. I don’t believe I have been more committed to anything than I have been to my recovery. The joy and love I feel today was worth every step I took to get here. This program works.
I am a former police officer with PTSD and when I attended South Pacific I was at my worst, to the point where I had recurring dreams, nightmares and flashbacks.
Battles with my methamphetamine addiction brought me to the brink of suicide. I was miserable and desperate. I had a gaping hole of emptiness but no answers on how to fill it. I found the program through Google, submitted my interest via the online form and was admitted on the next Monday. The skills I learned in South Pacific Private groups have strengthened my recovery as well as my relationships, as they’ve enabled me to have difficult conversations and express boundaries in a healthier way. I now feel less like a failure and more like a valuable and lovable human being in a desperate situation. These are the gifts of recovery since first making the decision to go to South Pacific Private.
I had a choice in my life, to die or do something. I had depression, I was self-harming, I had an eating disorder. I didn’t realise it, but I was carrying pain from being sexually, physically and emotionally abused my whole childhood. I thought I was worthless. I thought I was the problem. I had no idea what I needed to do, but then South Pacific Private came along. I learnt that the shame I felt wasn’t mine, it was given to me, and I didn’t have to feel like that all the time. I learnt that I am worth being in this world. Ten years down the track, I still carry stuff with me, but I know how to help myself, and more importantly, I want to help myself. I didn’t think there was any hope for me, but truly, there’s hope for everybody.
It’s frightening that I had accepted and normalised the complete and utter mental anguish I faced every day. I was so brittle and desolate. I genuinely believed that things couldn’t get any better and that my existence then was so final. But I’m here to tell you that this is a place far removed from my existence today. I’m still overwhelmed at how significant a change my life has had.
The programs at South Pacific Private gave me much insight into what was going on for me behaviourally. I also had the opportunity to heal some pretty dark trauma through the Changes Program. This program allows us to have a sliver of hope for something better in our lives. It gives us something to trust in when we’ve never been able to trust before after everything else has failed. Sometimes I still ask my partner if I can ‘share my reality’ with him and it immediately diffuses the intensity of what I’m about to say. Because, let’s face it, it’s a weird question to ask, but it highlights that I’ve got something going on for me that I have no other way of communicating and he respects that.
I will always be grateful to the team at South Pacific Private for the amazing care and compassion shown to me when I was at my sickest, saddest and most desperate point. Please would you personally accept my most sincere and truly eternal gratitude.
I learnt at South Pacific Private that early recovery is five years and have since discovered that this journey takes time and is rarely possible without a huge support network. The only courageous thing I did was ask for help and admit to myself I had no idea how to stop using and maybe someone else did.
At South Pacific Private I found so much more than a rehab: it was a community of human beings and professionals dedicated to healing. From learning how to help myself to tissues to developing an internal monologue which nurtures my inner-child, South Pacific Private didn't just take me out of crisis mode but gave me the skills to really develop a fulfilling, happy and healthy life. It's an experience that I will never forget and one I owe great gratitude to in making me the person I am today.
I was deployed to Afghanistan in March 2006; I returned a different man. I was withdrawn. I would wake at night reaching for my rifle. When we had our first daughter, I was devoid emotionally. Our second daughter was born two years later; I was empty again. The first step is realising that you are not alone and that you deserve it help — it took me many years to work that out. PTSD, addiction, depression and anxiety can tear apart families and bring veterans to the brink. South Pacific Private’s program can support families facing this and help veterans to rebuild their lives. Now I know recovery is possible and that you can rediscover meaning in your life.
You take from this program what you want; you are merely pointed and guided in the right direction, you’ve just got to be willing to try. That for me was the most important thing. I was willing to give something else a try rather than what I had currently been attempting. Further to this, if you had asked me what I wanted to get out of South Pacific Private at the start of my stay compared to what I got at the end, I would have short-changed myself as the awakening I had was beyond what I could have imagined.
* Please note other than the video footage, names and photos have been changed to protect our clients' privacy.