At Serenity Rehab Thailand we get it. Women and men are different when it comes to substance dependence, addiction, treatment, and recovery.1
Differences in Substance Dependence for Women
There are physical and psychological differences for women when it comes to substance dependence. These differences are measured across groups of women, compared with groups of men, so they don't necessarily apply to each and every woman. However, these differences can make a difference and it is important to be aware of them.
- Many of us know women who have a high tolerance for alcohol or drugs (for example Karen Allen in Raiders of the Lost Ark). However, in general, women have a lower tolerance for alcohol as well as some drugs, and become dependent on these substances more quickly and slightly later than their male counterparts.
- Women are more likely to be influenced by a partner's substance use and abuse.
- As well, women are more susceptible to liver disease and some cancers caused by alcoholism and drug addiction.2
Gender-Specific Addiction Treatment
We understand these differences and implement Gender-Specific Addiction Treatment.
- In practice this means that our staff consists of 50% female counselors.
- In group therapy, both women and men may interact differently in single gender groups as opposed to mixed-gender groups. We provide female-only group therapy (when appropriate), along with co-ed group therapy.
- In addition, some studies indicate that alcohol and drug-dependent women are more likely to be suffering from PTSD as a result of abuse.
- Traumatic events build up the idea of powerlessness, and it is important to avoid confrontational approaches, and to review the model that emphasizes one's powerlessness over substances.
- For females, relapse has been associated with living apart from one's children, being depressed, having a stressful marriage, and using within the context of romantic relationships.3
- Women who have more exposure to rehab (attend multiple rehabs), have an increased rate of relapse.
Women-Friendly Evidence-Based Addiction Treatment
Obviously not all women are the same, and there are many aspects of substance addiction and treatment that are similar for men and women. Serenity Rehab is a co-ed facility, whose leadership and clinical staff are fully aware and dedicated to providing individualized treatment that is effective for both women and men.
Our approach is research-based and evidence-based addiction treatment. Serenity Rehab adheres to the Principles of Effective Drug Addiction Treatment Guide by the US National Institute of Health. Substance dependence is serious and lives depend on providing the highest level of care.
Female Counselors and Support Staff at Serenity Rehab
Sue, originally from the UK, is an experienced addictions counsellor and group facilitator. In recovery herself, Sue has been working in the addiction field in the UK, Australia and Thailand for the past 11 years.
Sue's formal qualifications include CPCAB Counselling Skills Level 2, NVQ Level 3 Substance Misuse, and most recently, following residential training in the USA, she is also an IRI certified Recovery Specialist. Sue has continued professional training throughout her career, with multiple short training courses in CBT, Working with Resistance, Integrated Practice, Motivational Interviewing, Vulnerable Adults, Child Protection, Mindfulness, ITEP (International Treatment Effectiveness Project), and Psychosocial interventions for adult substance misusers.
Karuna Sue Clancy
Karuna is a qualified psychotherapist from the UK. She has worked in various addiction treatment centres as a manager, a group worker, and as a therapist for over 8 years. She has over 30 years experience of recovery from addiction, and during that time has followed a varied path of supporting and helping others from many different client groups. Karuna first worked as a child protection social worker, then as a rehab manager, then as a group worker, and retreat leader. She is now a psychotherapist employed in private practice, working with many clients on their recovery from addictions, historical sexual abuse, low self esteem, suicide attempts, depression, personality disorders, eating disorders, and other related issues.
Karuna's formal qualifications include a Diploma in Social Work (Dip SW), and a BA (hons) in Social Work & Community Studies. Karuna is a Certified Transactional Analyst (CTA), and Provisional Teaching & Supervising Transactional Analyst (PTSTA). During her working career she has always kept up to date with recent trends in human development and psychology, and has taken many short courses to keep abreast of current thinking in the field.
Lai Voon Mei (Mei)
Mei was raised in Kuala Lumpur, Malaysia. She is an also an addict in recovery, as are all clinical staff members. She is grateful for the support she had in the programme that helped her onto the road of recovery and wants to give back this support to other addicts and alcoholics.
Being in Serenity Rehab myself as a client in the past, and going through the same process as the current clients do, I understand exactly how they feel and what their needs are. I have worked hard on my recovery, and because of that, Serenity offered me a job as a support worker. Serenity helped me to realise how important support and guidance is for an addict to start their recovery process. I will be spending weekends doing Art Therapy and interactive games, along with the Sunday outings. I hope to bring out the inner child in us that we have lost for a very long time, and bring back the smiles, that for many we have long forgotten. Hope to see you soon in our beautiful setting in Chiang Rai, Thailand!
Orrapin Cromie (Aon)
Yoga and Meditation Instructor
Aon was born in Chiang Rai and has been practicing yoga for 5 years and teaching it for 3 years. In 2015 she travelled to India to study at the Swasti Yoga Centre in Rishikesh, and graduated from the 200 hour Yoga Teacher Training Program where she learnt yoga, anatomy, pranayama techniques, and meditation.
Aon enjoys teaching yoga and meditation at Serenity Rehab, and her focus is on supporting our clients to become healthier, stronger, and more self-aware.
Suvanna Pensuvann (Pi Su)
Suvanna is a member of our Night Support Staff, and assists clients between 9pm and 8am. She has held a number of senior administrative and marketing positions. Suvanna is bilingual in English and Thai and has undergone extensive training in the travel industry. She is a graduate of the three-year Accounting Program at Bangkok Business College as well as completing the Travel and tourism Advanced ACCESS program in Vancouver, Canada.
Suvanna's past employers include The Tourism Authorities of Thailand, Government of Thailand, Bangkok Area Schools, YES Secondary School in Bangkok, and several Hotel and Tourism Management and Consulting positions in Bangkok, the US, and Canada.
> Having spent about half of my life in Thailand and the other half in Canada, I am qualified to understand the important aspects of both cultures.
Anna provides supervision and support to our clinical team. She is a psychotherapist, Equine Assisted Therapist and qualified mindfulness teacher. Anna is in recovery herself, and has years of professional experience working with clients struggling with substance addiction and eating disorders. She lives in Somerset with her herd of Spanish horses.