Women's Treatment Program

A Place of Hope & Healing

Guest House’s program, located in Lake Orion, Michigan, at secure and private facilities, is licensed by the Michigan Department of Human Services and is fully accredited.

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Tour the Women’s Treatment Center

The Women’s Treatment Program Overview

For More Information:

Mary Ellen Merrick, IHM, D. Min., MAC 
Executive Director
Women’s Treatment Program
memerrick@guesthouse.org
800-626-6910

  • We offer treatment specially designed to help women religious recover from alcoholism and other addictions.
  • We believe that the unique nature of women in religious life requires special, personalized attention which honors not only their human dignity but their calling and commitment as well.
  • Guest House will admit any sister experiencing difficulties related to:
    -Substance use disorders: alcohol, other drugs or prescription medication
    -Process addictions: spending, gambling, cluttering, hoarding, internet, credit card use, gaming or others.
    -Compulsive overeating
  • Treatment is offered regardless of ability to pay.
  • Through our intervention assistance program, we can help you get someone started on the road to recovery whether it’s early or late in the disease process.
  • The program is designed to cut through denial and to help a sister who may think she needs it.

Our Program Details

Intervention Assistance Program

Guest House’s Intervention Assistance Program is designed to help a concerned person get someone started on the road to recovery. Our aim is to unmask the denial and help the sister admit there is a possible problem. This is the first step toward recovery. Ending denial requires considerable courage and is the only way to recovery.

The Guest House Intervention Assistance Program provides:

  • Consultation, including assisting in information gathering and preparation – on site, if necessary
  • Telephone contact and support throughout the process
  • Staff support during the actual intervention, if needed
Assessment & Evaluation

Effective treatment begins with a thorough understanding of the individual’s difficulties as well as the impact of those difficulties on her community.

Our professional assessment includes:

  • Psychological test battery and clinical interview
  • Complete physical examination
  • Thorough psychosocial history with particular attention to long-standing patterns of difficulty
  • Comprehensive addiction screening process
  • Spiritual summary which reviews the sister’s spiritual journey
  • Feedback conference with the client, her leadership and the evaluating team to review the results of the assessment and discuss recommendations from the staff

The assessment is required for all participants in the Guest House program. The process is completed within seven to ten business days. Assessments from other institutions will be reviewed.

Referrals & Admissions

Information on program services, referrals and admissions is available 24 hours a day by calling 800-626-6910.

Referrals:

Referrals may be made by authorized representatives of the sister’s community, primary treatment centers, physicians, other concerned individuals or the sister herself.

The admission must be approved by the sister’s leadership.

Admissions:

Guest House will admit any sister who is suffering from any substance use disorder, process addiction or compulsive overeating or who is experiencing difficulties related to substance use.

Treatment is provided regardless of ability to pay.

Admissions are scheduled by appointment.

Sisters arriving by plane or train will be met at the airport or station by a Guest House associate.

Handicapped-accessible rooms are available.

Treatment

Guest House for Women Religious is a state-licensed residential treatment center in Lake Orion, Michigan. It has certified and licensed professional staff and is CARF (Commission on Accreditation of Rehabilitation Facilities) accredited. It offers treatment for substance use disorders (alcohol, other drugs and prescription medication), process addictions (spending, gambling, cluttering, hoarding, internet, credit card use, gaming or others) and compulsive overeating. Psychiatric disorders and co-occurring addiction are evaluated on a case-by-case basis. The level of care needed determines whether Guest House will provide the needed treatment or make an appropriate referral. Women religious from across the United States as well as around the world benefit from the services offered by Guest House.

Services include:

  • Comprehensive evaluation services including psychological, spiritual and psychosocial components
  • An intensive, multi-modal, interpersonally-focused treatment program
  • Five-year continuing care and follow-up services
  • Consultation for community leadership and formation personnel

All our services are provided in collaboration with leadership. Treatment is provided regardless of the community’s ability to pay for services.

Continuing Care & Recovery

Continuing Care is an important element of effective treatment. Ongoing attention aids the sister in the community re-entry process by helping her to apply skills learned in treatment to daily life.

To further support ongoing recovery, Guest House provides:

  • Detailed description of ongoing support needed
  • Therapeutic leave near the end of the residential program which allows the sister to share her experience, needs and commitments to her recovery with significant persons in her community, family and ministerial life
  • Workshops every three or six months, depending on the addiction treated, during a five-year period following residential treatment

Participation in the appropriate support systems provides the sister the opportunity to develop a mature appreciation of her strengths and vulnerabilities.

Education

Continuing Care is an important element of effective treatment. Ongoing attention aids the sister in the community re-entry process by helping her to apply skills learned in treatment to daily life.

To further support ongoing recovery, Guest House provides:

  • Detailed description of ongoing support needed
  • Therapeutic leave near the end of the residential program which allows the sister to share her experience, needs and commitments to her recovery with significant persons in her community, family and ministerial life
  • Workshops every three or six months, depending on the addiction treated, during a five-year period following residential treatment

Participation in the appropriate support systems provides the sister the opportunity to develop a mature appreciation of her strengths and vulnerabilities.

“Guest House has certainly been a place of blessing for our community. The services provided are not just professionally excellent but pastorally administered. It makes such a difference for a Sister who is experiencing the challenges of addiction to be in an atmosphere in which her life of consecration and commitment is not only understood but respected and reverenced. Being with other ‘Sister companions’ on the healing journey is a blessing as well!”

Sister M. Anncarla Costello, SND Provincial Superior, Sisters of Notre Dame

Click to Download the Women’s Brochure

Graphic Illustration and Reflection

With gratitude to Donna Korba, IHM (Scranton, PA)

“Dynamism, color and complexity generate an upward movement from the darkness of addiction into the light of recovery. Women of diversity reach toward healing from broken hearts and torn lives in the context of supportive community, trust and interdependence. Interwoven circles of wholeness and communion illuminate the strong uplifted cross, ever present in the background, as a reminder of the agony of despair and the victory of life transformed by suffering and grace.”

Click play on the video to hear Sr. Jean reflect on her Catholic upbringing and how religion was the dominant factor in her life.

For More Information:

Mary Ellen Merrick, IHM, D. Min., MAC 
Executive Director
Women’s Treatment Program

memerrick@guesthouse.org

800-626-6910