I will forever be grateful to Renaissance for saving my daughter’s life and for rescuing our family. We thought our daughter would be there for 90 days, but it turned into 9 months. It was all worth it! She is back to her best self, working and going to school. Thanks in particular to Michael and Racquel! I would recommend Caron to anyone struggling with addiction and emotional problems.


Almost two and a half years ago my son called me and told me he needed help. I knew he was depressed, doing poorly in school and smoking too much pot, but I had no idea what I would face when I arrived at his College that Spring evening. In the middle of a snowstorm I found him delusional and stranded on a highway far from school. I couldn’t believe I was doing this, I was scared and alone. The next day I made some phone calls, a friend’s son had been to a treatment program in Pennsylvania and then Florida. I soon realized that I could not spend another night alone with my son whose behavior was psychotic. I got him in the car and started driving as my husband at home made calls to several treatment centers. Caron had a bed. They were wonderful on the phone.

We were completely unprepared for the journey on which we had embarked and with their support and guidance and that of Caron Renaissance during the next phase of treatment, we have been challenged to learn, grow, and make meaningful changes in all of our lives. Our son was at Renaissance for seven months and when he moved on to the next phase in our lives his counselors continued to support us. On April 11th he celebrated 2 Years of sobriety. I have such gratitude in my heart for his sobriety, his life, and for the new life I have in recovery from this family disease. My son will face the fight against addiction every day for the rest of his life, and I will continue to work on myself to avoid slipping back into old behaviors. Thank God we do not do this alone, Renaissance gave us the tools we needed and they will be there for us if we call. This journey was not an easy one. I did not always like what they had to say, but I trusted them and did all that they asked. I am so glad that I did.

Looking Back, Three Years Later

We benefited tremendously from the Caron Renaissance experience. But it wasn’t easy and it wasn't fun. As our adult child struggled with recovery, we as parents struggled with our own recovery and how to restructure both our expectations and relationships. It became clear that we could not shield, lessen, or rescue our child from the struggle; it was absolutely necessary for any hope of a lasting recovery. Even though our child left CR after 4 months, and under terms that were not at the time considered favorable, the lessons learned were instrumental while our child went through the struggles of residing in a sober living facility, starting work, and taking on adult responsibilities. As recovery continued, our child decided to return to CR for regular outpatient meetings. The CR professionals never took their eye off of our child or of us; they challenged us, but with specific purpose grounded in clinical treatment. Now 3 years past our time at CR, we as parents continue to appreciate (and try to practice) the lessons learned.

Crediting the Counsellors at Caron Renaissance, by Catherine

My daughter was helped tremendously by Caron Renaissance. She's sober, participating in a 12 step program, working and going to school. I credit the counsellors at Caron with helping her look within herself and do the work necessary to begin healing. She finished the program a year ago and has been doing weekly therapy with a Caron counselor. I recommend continuing therapy with an addiction counselor after finishing treatment.

Next steps...College & The Collegiate Recovery Program by E.B.S.

Our son’s goal was to return to college but how? When he was ready, how would he begin to get back on track? How would we pull together all that was needed to restart that process? The Collegiate Recovery Services at Caron Renaissance, that’s how.

With Jonathan Salzburg’s expertise, knowledge, resources, and guidance along with his big heart we could not have been in better hands. With much input from our son, Jonathan assisted him (and us) with the innumerable how to’s -how to transfer records from the previous college, which credits would apply, what to do next, which college would be the best fit, which services are offered, a tentative plan, on and on and on. Living in the Sober Dorm gave our son independence while providing structure and support. It allowed for a transition that helped propel our son forward to reaching his goals. For me, all of the above were tasks that I was heavily involved in when our son initially entered college. Because of Renaissance and Jonathan, I learned to let our son build up his ego strength by seeking out resources and the information that he needed. I learned to let go and allow him to thrive. I learned to let him learn by making mistakes.
Throughout, Jonathan held our son accountable and believed in him. We believed in Jonathan and our son. We developed confidence in our son. And most importantly, we watched as our son went from being externally motivated to internally motivated because he wanted it for himself.

Grateful for Caron Renaissance by Margaret B.

We came to Caron Renaissance (CR) because our daughter was both an addict and an alcoholic, had multiple mental health diagnoses, and had been in several rehabs over the prior seven years. My husband and I had decided this was the last treatment we would fund. Our daughter did not believe she could ever get well or feel better. She was so sick only two programs would accept her. Thanks to CR’s dedicated and skillful counselors, their focus on individual needs, and the grace of a higher power, she has been sober and clean for 18 months. Our daughter is a grateful member of AA and we have our own recovery program. It would not have happened without Caron Renaissance and I believe that our daughter would not be alive today but for Caron Renaissance.

Happy, Clean and Sober Son by Angela Ponatoski

I am grateful every single day for the 4 and 1/2 years and counting of sobriety that my son now enjoys. While at Caron Renaissance he was allowed to build a large network of sober support, including Caron alumni and AA contacts. During the last months of his stay, he needed to make a commitment to a job, contribute to the monthly Renaissance fees, as well as make and adhere to a budget. Consequently, when he left Caron Renaissance, he was essentially self supporting and had a group of friends in a sober network. He integrated successfully into society. Since then, he remains financially independent, goes to school at night, and has a loving girlfriend and dog. His father and I treat him as an adult. My son respects us as loving adults. Best of all---he is happy. What more can a family ask? I thank Caron Renaissance for working with him and his parents to allow his sobriety and healthy relationships to emerge. I am grateful.

Family Education Week and Family Restructuring by Jane F.

Probably the most important experience was my visit to Renaissance for family education week and then family restructuring. These were difficult, as was addiction treatment for my son, but they changed my life, stripped me of my rationalizations, made me understand that my behavior was crucial in my son's recovery. The confrontational approach of Caron Renaissance is out of favor in mainstream addiction treatment.  It is seen as unhelpful. I don't agree.  Caron Renaissance was the first time that my son faced consequences for his behavior.  And I was confronted over my own behavior.  I returned home after restructuring understanding how I needed to change.

That has taken a long time and has been helped additionally by good psychotherapy.  I feel, after so long, that I really am beginning to detach and let him run his life on his own.  And I can see already that this is having a positive impact on how he handles his life.  I am becoming confident that he can do it. My current psychiatrist tells me that "acceptance" is crucial.  That is the most difficult part.  But I know he is right.  And I continue to go to Alanon and other support meetings.