New coping skills help client move toward recovery

Authored by: Community Support Services

The path that led Jay Robinson to CSS was littered with childhood trauma, abuse, heartbreak, drug use, prison and homelessness. And anger – lots of anger.

Jay consistently responded to situations with anger. It’s an emotion that has landed him in many bad situations. “My anger gets the best of me,” he admits. Over the years, Jay turned to drugs to cope with his anger, calm him down and stop the voices in his head. The combination of substance abuse and his angry outbursts resulted in him being kicked out of numerous housing situations. At one point, he was living on the streets.

Over the years, Jay has been involved with several CSS programs to help steer him onto the right path. He recently found success through a 12-week anger management course at CSS and experienced months of sobriety after years of substance use. He’s become more spiritual and has begun journaling, meditating and practicing martial arts. He wants to learn to swim – a goal he set to overcome a fear of water that resulted from a traumatic childhood experience.

"I'm just trying to be a better person," he said.

While Jay admits he still gets angry, the changes in his demeanor have resulted in the most stable living situation he’s experienced in a long time. He is an active participant in day treatment, and his participation in CSS groups has changed from being disruptive to being constructive and insightful.

“I would hold things in until I explode,” he said. In group, “I talk about my feelings. I’m learning forgiveness. I learned that if you put your mind to it, you can overcome anything that comes your way.”

Jay’s current goals include staying sober, being compliant with his medications, and continued participation in his CSS groups. He believes the support will help keep him going.

“CSS saved my life. CSS is my family,” he said. “I care about CSS. That’s why I’m still around. They see something good in me.”