I started outpatient with the Crossroads Program when I was only 15 because I got in trouble for drinking. I had only abused alcohol for a year, I was not an alcoholic but they convinced me I was. During the seven months I was there I learned about almost every drug there is by listening to other clients' "life stories". I was convinced that ALL of my "old friends" were bad, even though most of them were completely sober and making straight A's in high school. I was told that they would not understand me because they did not have an alcohol problem. I felt so alone. I did not feel like I fit in with the people attending Crossroads at the time because they were all older than me, had done alot more drugs, and had done worse things than me like stealing, sleeping around, etc. I also felt alone because Crossroads made me feel like I did not fit in with "normal people" in high school. A guy I was in outpatient with liked me and I liked him and people commented in front of both of us that we were "gaming". They made me feel less than them and that hanging out with guys were bad unless they had a long time sober. All of the guys that had a long time sober were WAY older than me and my mom felt uncomfortable with me hanging out with them. The events that really pushed me over the edge is that the two counslers running the program suddenly left with very little notice. One quit and started getting drunk, the other one was forced to move to the other Crossroads location in Columbia. I decided to leave the group and try new drugs and get drunk more often so maybe I would feel like I fit in. I did this for a couple months- getting drunk all the time, trying pills, having one night stands, smoking weed, drinking Nyquil every night and not acting like myself at all. I went back to Crossroads after about two months.
My second time in Crossroads, people helped convince me that being in highschool was my problem because I was around all of my old friends( the friends making great grades and having fun without using). I was made to feel like I needed to hang out very late every night in order to be sober and have fun. We would trespass and do stupid things just to have fun. I had more run ins with the cops in this group than I did when I was not in it. (I had never even had a run in with a cop before Crossroads). I only stayed in the group for four months this time. I was no longer in school so that I would have more time for the group. I now see how messed up that is. I was robbed of my highschool years. It was looked down upon to attend school events such as prom or be apart of a sports team. There were only two other girls in the program at the time and the guys were all being jerks so I decided to leave again. Since I was not in school anymore, I just got drunk every day, all day. It was too late in the semester to go back. I ended up wrecking my car while drunk and decided it was time to get sober again.
At this point, I was so brainwashed that Crossroads was the only way to get sober and stay sober and so I went back through outpatient again. Another 8000 dollars down the drain. I stayed sober for 2 and a half years this time. I got sponsees, I got put on steering committee and all that "cool stuff". I had an amazing boyfriend for almost two years and we both started struggling with working the steps. I felt happy when I was with him. but struggled most of the other times. We decided to break up to work on ourselves. So one moment I had an amazing guy and then the next moment, it was looked down upon if we even talked because that would make us just get good feelings off of each other. A couple weeks later it was announced that both of our counslers were getting transferred to St Louis(one of them was my sponsor). We were only given a few days notice!
I relapsed and came back after a week and then my ex boyfriend relapsed on heroin only one time (and I thank God for that) because I would not be okay if something would to happen to him! He was moved to St Louis to go through outpatient again in that group and I was moved to Columbia for outpatient. We were told not to talk or text anymore. It was one of the hardest things that Ive had to go through. I still think about him every day and it has almost been a year. Anyways, I moved back to KC after outpatient and continued going to meetings and functions in the group. Since the senior counselor and outpatient counselor both left, we had two new ones to take their place. The new outpatient counselor had just got out of training and was only 21 years old. I had been in the group with her(for longer than her too) before she was a counselor. She was horrible, and most of the girls and parents would agree with that. What drove me over the edge is that we had a girls meeting. She told us what kind of underwear to wear(everyone had seen her thong hanging out on multiple occasions and that was one of the types we could not wear because it came from the porn industry). She also told us what we could and could not shave on our bodies. We were looked down upon if we were two piece swimsuits, most of us just got used to wearing tshirts and shorts to swim! We werent allowed to talk about our sex lives and periods with the girls, are we supposed to just keep that to ourselves??? Seriously, shouldnt a counselor know better than to try and control us?? We could not hold hands with girls(we would do that playfully, none of us were even lesbians but apparently it is inappropriate). At one point we did have a l*****n in our group and we were not allowed to hang out in two pieces around her! It is all so ridiculous, and I cant believe we all just went along with it! At some points I even agreed with it because I believed that they knew what they were doing! I was definitely brainwashed. I got scorned at for feeding my best friend(a girl) a teddy graham because it was inappropriate and sexual. Are we not allowed to have some innocent fun?? I could not stay any longer!
So I left the group at age 20, about 3 months ago. The day I left, nobody would talk to me anymore, even though I was staying sober!! I had been isolated from the outside world for so long so I had no friends anymore. People that I had been SO close with in the program ignored me. My bestfriends would not respond to my texts. I went from having so many amazing friends to none just because I left. I stayed sober on my own for almost two months before I tried to kill myself. I was just so angry and lonely and hurt that I just wanted it all to go away. I took some pills, drank, and did airduster until I started having seizures and was taken to the hospital. Guess what, NOW they wanted to be there for me while I spent a week in a psych ward! After a week of being out of the hospital, NOBODY will talk to me again. I have so much hurt and resentments towards the group that I sometimes do not think I will be able to move on. I so badly wish I never met any of those people or counselors because in the long run, all they gave to me was a broken heart. Right now I do not how to make it in life, I dont know how to function as a normal person in society because I was involved in this cult during the major years of when people discover who they are and what their passions are.
I could have gone through high school just like my "old friends", gone away to college, and been normal. The group made me worse, it made me have a drug problem. Sure this place is probably good for people with real addictions but it will only make things worse for people like me who barely had a problem when I started.