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Why We Did An Addiction Treatment Guarantee

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"Refund? Refund?" - Mr. Stoller, Breaking Away

If you're familiar with this classic movie, you may remember the reaction of our hero's father when he learned his son Dave had the audacity to stand behind their product and word with regard to the used cars they sell. Dave was an idealistic, unspoiled teenager working in his dad's used car business. It seemed absolutely natural and just the right thing to do to offer customers something that worked. And if it didn't work, bring it back. This nearly caused his dear ol' dad to have a heart attack. It simply was not the way the business works, he told his son.  



From Used Cars to Addiction Treatment

Unfortunately, many of the things we associate with shady used car dealerships of the past are all too real with the addiction treatment and rehab industry. Focusing on "heads in beds" instead of looking at the clients as people who desperately need help. Not standing behind the product. Broadly in the residential addiction treatment space, success rates have been dismal, scores of people are dying, and many times people will go through treatment once, twice, multiple times without regaining control of their lives [think Lindsay Lohan, Cory Monteith from Glee, and Philip Seymour Hoffman to name a few]. What other healing profession looks for repeat customers? "Would you like that root canal again, sir? Didn't quite get it the first time."

Truth be told, it's not surprising very few residential treatment centers guarantee their work. It's because in large part they are woefully unsuccessful. According to many studies (see below), under 5% of the people who complete the 12 Steps maintain control and sobriety. The other 95% struggle, falter and return to alcohol, drugs or other preferred substance in failure or simply for relief from these wounds.

Why We Offer An Addiction Treatment Guarantee

Instead of passing the buck, the partners at The Clearing made a decision to do something about it. So we shredded what the residential treatment industry was doing, started with a blank piece of paper and created an addiction treatment program that is a real, genuine healing program. Instead of following the archaic 12 Steps model from the 1930s, we pieced together the most up-to-date psychological approaches that were “evidence-based.” Our addiction treatment program isn’t based on guesswork and hope; it is based on scientific evidence and practical application. Oh, and by the way, this works not only for addiction treatment but also for treating depression, anxiety, eating disorders and other conditions. It works because we focus not on the behavior, but on the underlying core issues causing the unwanted behavior.

We feel so strongly you will experience profound healing and a profound change in your life after authentically committing and going through our program. We feel so strongly, in fact, that we back it up with a guarantee.

If after completing this program a graduate is still dealing with the same issues, we allow them to undergo an additional 28 days free of charge. Full details on our addiction treatment guarantee.

We want to reduce your anxiety as much as we can with what may be one of the biggest decisions of your life.

Why We're Confident Offering An Addiction Treatment Guarantee

Here are a few things that set us apart and give us confidence you will heal when you authentically commit:

  1. All Participants begin on the same day and end on the same day.
    This avoids the disruptions of people coming and going. In traditional 12 Steps rehab, when a new person enters, other Participants have to scramble back to square one to get the new guy up to speed.
  2. A true psychological program.
    Participants are taught a number of psychological approaches in order for them to counsel themselves after they discharge. By the 28th day Participants are well versed in our “self-counseling” format.
  3. Progressive approach.
    Each day builds on itself in order for the true depth of healing to be achieved.
  4. Holistic approach.
    The mind, body, emotions and spirit are taken into account. If only one dimension is worked on (like in most traditional 12 Steps programs), it can put the whole being out of balance.
  5. Focus on the underlying core issues.
    Addiction and other mental health conditions are often like an untreated sliver that is buried down deep and can be painful when disturbed. We focus on identifying that underlying cause, nurturing with love and healing it using evidence-based approaches.

An addiction treatment guarantee of this nature is rarely seen in the residential rehab space. It is about time more providers and treatment centers stand behind what they do. We pride ourselves in providing an excellent addiction treatment that works. In addition, our facility is novel, comfortable, homey and everybody gets their own private room and private bathroom. Finally, all of this happens at a great price - we are less that half the price of comparable residential rehab options.

About The Clearing

The Clearing is a residential treatment center located on beautiful San Juan Island, Washington. We created The Clearing in response to the pervasiveness of treatment centers that focus more on luxury than modern, evidence-based therapy.

Our approach is based on healing the underlying core issues that cause addiction. If you'd like to learn more, contact us, or download our free eBook:

Download eBook:

Healing Underlying Core Issues

  Download eBook:  Healing Underlying Core Issues


A recent review by the Cochrane Library, a health-care research group, of studies on alcohol treatment conducted between 1966 and 2005 states its results plainly: “No experimental studies unequivocally demonstrated the effectiveness of AA or TSF [12 Steps facilitation] approaches for reducing alcohol dependence or problems.” Dr. Bankole Johnson cites equally dismal numbers: “In a 1990 summary of five membership surveys from 1977 through 1989, AA reported that 81% of alcoholics who began attending meetings stopped within one month. At any one time, only 5% of those still attending had been doing so for a year.”

Joe Koelzer

This post was written by Joe Koelzer

Joe Koelzer is a co-founder of The Clearing. He has years of counseling experience and a master’s degree in Spiritual Psychology from the University of Santa Monica. After observing how depression and substance abuse impacted his wife’s life, Joe realized how broken our current system is for addiction and related mental health treatment. He witnessed firsthand how an evidence-based approach coupled with Spiritual Psychology saved Betsy and enabled her to gain control of her life. In co-founding The Clearing, Joe realizes his dream of creating and sharing this innovative approach with others in a structured clinical setting.

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