My story begins at the local gas station. The attendant knew me to be homeless and harmless; she didn’t mind that I meandered around the store with my drink, thawing my bones. She merely smiled when I purchased a bottle of Listerine and a pack of cigarettes. “The poor man’s “Rumplemintz” is what I’d jokingly call it. She looked out at me, pensive and remote, then down at me – never down on me, though. I looked up at her and our tear-filled eyes met. I asked if she would call someone for me. An ambulance came shortly thereafter. 

Toward the end of my stay in the Emergency Room, the staff asked if I wanted to go home. What home? I said if I did leave, I’d just end up back there. I pointed out that was the same response I’d had the last time they asked me, just a few days ago. I was stuck.  

My counselor gave me a packet of recovery homes to contact. Way Back Inn answered my desperate call– they said, “recovery first, we’ll figure out the fees later.” It was immediately apparent that Way Back Inn was unique. They provided me with the structure and support I needed to grow and succeed. With the help of peer support, therapy, and the months I spent in this residential program, I was transformed into something I never dreamt I could be: a genuinely happy, stable, sober person.

Way Back Inn

Since 1974, Way Back Inn has successfully provided long-term residential and outpatient treatment for substance and gambling use disorders.  Our mission is to rebuild lives damaged by addiction in a personalized healing environment. This holiday season, we ask that you gift responsibly with the youth in your family. Children who have early exposure to gambling experiences, including lottery tickets, are more likely to develop a gambling problem later in life. For more information or to make a donation to our program, go to: or call us at 708-345-8422 ext. 22.

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