The OCP Blog

Closing one chapter, beginning a new: an announcement from Ron

After much soul searching, I have decided to resign my position as OCP executive director for two major reasons. First, I have been going through an intensely transformational time in my personal life, and I have decided that I need to make my personal recovery journey the top priority in my life. And today, unfortunately, my work at OCP does not completely align with that priority. And secondly, I am interested in setting out to pursue knowledge in the field of developmental trauma, possibly in higher education.

About four years ago, I had a stark realization that the elephant in the living room at OCP was not homelessness, addiction, or lack of faith in God, but instead trauma – it was childhood abuse and neglect that had exiled these beautiful souls to the margins of society. My revelation did not come from a book or any other external source. It came from the fact that almost EVERYONE I had gotten to know over the years who was struggling with homelessness was a victim of the most profound kinds of abuse and neglect that you can imagine.

I have the feeling that pursuing formal education in this field and working to connect what I learn with the community at OCP, might, at the end of the story, be the best thing I could possibly do for this community. Like recovery itself, short term pain (leaving OCP’s daily life), for long term gain. If my work could somehow begin to find ways to get at the core of the big darkness in the hearts of these abuse victims, and perhaps cultivate avenues for psychic freedom, then it will be time well-spent indeed.

In May of this year, in order to do some in depth recovery work on my own stuff, I checked myself into a residential recovery center in Bowling Green, KY called The Bridge to Recovery. Amazingly, this place was working with exactly the very issue that I had recognized four years earlier at OCP – the connection between childhood trauma and compulsive and addictive behavior. A couple of things became clear to me through this experience. 1) Many of my own struggles with compulsive behavior have acted themselves out during my life’s work at OCP, and 2) Folks who have been through what our friends at OCP have been through need deep, professional, skillful, loving, experiential group therapy that they simply cannot afford.

So I’m setting out from dear sweet OCP, my second home, my community, to work on both of these issues. It is my hope and prayer that my journey will bring me back someday soon with more information, more serenity, more wisdom, more humility, and I will again find a productive and helpful place in this community that I love.

Thank you all for everything you have given me. I love you.

Ron Copeland

Founder, Director Emeritus