Five stars

A few years ago my friend Beatrijs* really had to take a break. Alone, without her children, she went to a Five Star Resort (her own words) for 6 weeks, where she had full board and above-average personal care. That sounds idyllic, all kinds of enticing images immediately flash through your head. For six weeks, all attention only to yourself, no shopping and no cooking. Of course you don't have to clean there either, five stars is five stars.

Now you naturally want to know where that resort is. Well, the Resort that Beatrijs went to is known to most people as the Jellinek Kliniek. When you hear that, all your dreams about the five star care will change like thunder. Freedom turns out to be limitation and hopelessness looms in your head. Because if you're in a clinic like that, you must be of the worst kind and hopelessly lost.

Beatrijs was in the clinic because of an alcohol addiction, but there are also people there because of their drug, game or sex addiction. Together they go through a strict program with fixed times that are not deviated from, with group and private therapies, lectures, training sessions and also (oh, how happy that made my girlfriend) sports. You learn from each other, but above all a lot about yourself. Beatrijs learned there, for example, that addiction is predisposed to some people and that it can be triggered by something just like that. She has also realized that it is all or nothing for her, which means that a bottle that opens must also be empty.

When checking in at the resort, Beatrijs made a switch: she wanted to get on with her life, but in a different way. For herself and her children. She threatened to go crazy and lose everything, but – thank God – saw that in time and dealt with it with the support of her inner circle. After her stay there she came home reborn and now, a few years later, she still has not drunk a drop. I think the great thing about Beatrijs is that she has always been open about her retreat, without sentiment but honest and clear. I could never catch her peddling, she didn't become a morality knight. It's her story and nothing else. I really appreciate that in her.

But hey, it sure makes you think when your girlfriend goes through this hell. After fright, concern and compassion for her, my primary reaction was to stick my own head in the first sand heap: this was not about me. And no, I didn't sit and sit as deep as Beatrijs. But still I was made to think: what about my alcohol consumption? Very slowly I became more and more aware of that and now I'm going to turn the switch.

Inspired by my tough girlfriend who actually deserves five stars for her bravery.

*Beatrijs is not the girlfriend's real name.


Wijzig instellingen voor chat