We’ve seen the trope too many times in Hollywood about the less than nature-enthusiast woman who lives a cushioned, materialistic life who gets thrown into a rough outdoor adventure. Typically there’s comedy surrounding the exploitation of her prim, proper, and prissy femininity until she breaks through the confines of her inability and finds her capability as a rugged woman of the wilderness. In these narratives, somewhere through her journey, the heroine stops believing that she can’t because she’s “a girl” and starts taking the actions necessary to prove to herself that she can, realizing that her capability is entirely due to the strength she derives from being a woman. By the end of the movie, she’s accomplished physical, mental, and emotional feats she never thought possible. She’s become empowered, more than she has realized any kind of potential, because she adapted to a comfort zone way outside of her comprehension.
Women have their power taken away through all kinds of moments, lessons, programming, and self-doubts created both by themselves and the world they live in, as well as the people in their lives. Trauma, mental health issues, and other circumstances can add to the many ways women can start to develop a learned helplessness, enhanced by the frail and fragile female social constructs tell them to be. Consequently, the lure of drugs and alcohol can become strong as a way to cope with feeling powerless. Once women gain a sense of euphoria, the delusion of empowerment substances or other harmful behaviors provide quickly becomes addicting. Addiction works to fill a void and succeeds in doing so at a surface level, for only so long. Eventually, women’s attachments to their vices- both external and internal- runs out, as does the potency of the result provided by drugs, alcohol, or whatever women turn to in order to try and find their power. Just as all the women in those Hollywood narratives find, they can’t shortcut the transformation of their journey and end up at their destination. Radical transformation takes time, effort, and showing up. Along the way, women discover confidence, esteem, and ability.
At RedCliff Recovery, women take an entirely non-traditional approach to the recovery process. Leaving traditional treatment center comforts for the minimalist, survivalist adventure of a wilderness therapy program, women dive head first into a self-discovery process. Wilderness therapy is inherently empowering because everything that women find themselves having to do for themselves- from creating a fire to cooking over a fire, from hiking to mountain biking, from literally navigating their own course to collaborating with other women- is a demonstration that women can follow through on their responsibility to themselves.
RedCliff Recovery is a by women for women wilderness therapy program designed to help women between the ages of 18-30 find freedom, live in joy, and be empowered in who they are. For information on our one of a kind treatment program in Southern Utah, call us today.