CopShock: Second Edition
Surviving Posttraumatic Stress Disorder (PTSD)

by Allen R. Kates, MFAW, BCECR

 Alcohol Use

Alcohol is frequently used to self-medicate, to soften the pain from trauma. Heavy drinking does not always mean alcoholism but it may. Sources listed here provide support for both alcohol and, in some cases, drug-dependent people.

Adult Children of Alcoholics,
World Service Organization (ACA WSO)
ACA is a twelve-step, twelve-tradition program of men and women who grew up in alcoholic or otherwise dysfunctional homes. In the safe environment of their support meetings, ACAs discover how their childhoods affected them in the past and influence them in the present. They take positive action to find freedom from the past and improve their lives today.
   Go to: Write: ACA WSO, P.O. Box 3216, Torrance, CA 90510. Phone: 310-534-1815.

This worldwide organization offers a self-help recovery program for families and friends of alcoholics whether or not the alcoholic seeks help or even recognizes the drinking problem. Based on the twelve steps of Alcoholics Anonymous, the program has no dues or fees for membership. In twelve languages, the website focuses on adults whose lives have been affected by someone else’s drinking and on teenagers growing up in alcoholic families.
   Go to: Write: Al-Anon World Service Office, 1600 Corporate Landing Parkway, Virginia Beach, VA 23454-5617. For meetings in the USA and Canada, call toll-free: 888-425-2666. In the US, phone (757) 563-1600.; in Canada, phone (613) 723-8484. For meetings in over thirty-eight other countries, see the Al-Anon website.

Alcoholics Anonymous (AA)
AA is the foremost organization for sufferers of alcoholism and heavy drinking with many groups worldwide. Presented in English, Spanish and French, AA’s website provides a self-test for alcoholism and a description of what AA offers such as anonymity and a twelve-step program. Check the telephone book for the nearest group.
   Go to: For the U.S. and Canada, write: General Service Office of AA, P.O. Box 459, Grand Central Station, New York, NY 10163. Phone: 212-870-3400. For over forty other countries, see the site’s International Section.

Center for Alcohol and Addiction Studies (CAAS)
CAAS conducts research and provides publications, education and training. Its website offers information and resources for people who may be addicted to alcohol or drugs.
   Go to: Write: CAAS, Box G-S121-5, Brown University, Providence, RI 02912. Phone: 401-863-6600.

Focused Treatment Systems (FTS)
FTS provides information about alcohol and drug abuse treatment. It offers for sale the Alcohol Withdrawal Treatment Manual, a clinically proven method for alcohol withdrawal syndrome (AWS) treatment. This is a practical book for clinicians.
   Go to: Write: P.O. Box 530, Glen Echo, MD 20812-0530. Call toll-free: 800-728-6799. Phone: 301-320-0529.

Internet Alcohol Recovery Center
This website offers extensive information and support for people who feel they drink too much. For those uncertain about the extent of the problem, a self-test is provided. Featured also are alcohol and recovery news stories, a library and a description of clinics, organizations and support groups.
   Go to: Write: Joseph R. Volpicelli, MD, Ph.D., Treatment Research Center, 3900 Chestnut Street, Philadelphia, PA 19104-6178. Phone: 215-248-6025.