The Inside Out Recovery program has come to Los Alamos with services and support groups to help this community with those struggling with addiction.
Abe Gordon is a Peer Support Worker for Inside Out Recovery and knows this community well. He grew up in the Chimayo Valley and moved to Los Alamos when he was just 13.
“LA is the place where I experienced most of my drug use for the first time,” Gordon said. “I started at a young age, smoking pot and drinking, after moving to Los Alamos, I was introduced to psychedelics, then in my later teens, to meth, then to cocaine and heroin in my late teens / early 20s.”
Gordon is now 40 years old with more than nine years clean from all drugs, but it took a lot for him to get there. He admits to using heroin nearly every day for 12 years, until he reached the age of 31. It was then that he was facing felony charges that would have him spending the rest of his life in prison.
“I was blessed to have been accepted into the Delancey Street Foundation,” Gordon said. “Where I lived, worked and earned my life back for 4.5 years.”
The struggle was not over for Gordon as he realized the challenges of being faced with society. He was invited to a 12 step program meeting with a friend and was able to quickly started identifying with the struggles and became drawn to the solution. When he discovered Inside Out Recovery he was able to quickly surround himself with others fighting to stay clean. He then learned the principles of recovery and applies them to his daily life.
According to Gordon, since then he has worked in San Francisco, in the field of recovery, running a transitional living community for men where he took part in writing a manual of policies and procedures and was the house manager for a year commitment.
He has now returned to New Mexico, where he has worked as a Recovery Advocate for 2 rehabilitation centers and now works full time for Inside Out Recovery, living in beautiful Ojo Caliente. He travels up the hill on Mondays and Tuesdays to the new office of Inside Out Recovery, where he has worked since February.
The Los Alamos office is open 8 a.m. to 5 p.m., Monday and Tuesday, and Gordon is available to educate those in need to the many services here, in Espanola and Taos. The services include a wellness center that focuses on getting addicts the resources needed to get clean, get off the streets, get jobs, and learn to live a productive life.
Their services are too vast to name them all, but include; detox / rehab referrals and transportation if needed, substance abuse recovery support, medically assisted treatment support, relapse prevention, Tele health (Doctors, Counseling, Therapist, Harm Reduction), a juvenile support group and so much more.
Gordon is available for one on one peer support and offers a special support group at 5:30 p.m., Tuesday evenings for parents and caregivers of youth who may be affected by addiction. Additional information is available by calling 505.257.8561 or toll free for their other offices at 1.877.703.1270. The best part is that all services are free of charge.
“What I appreciate most about working with Inside Out is the opportunity to utilize my experience with the disease of addiction and my journey through recovery to help others just like me,” Gordon said.