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Ask the Expert: How does the "Baby Steps" program help moms in recovery?

Ask the Expert: How does the "Baby Steps" program help moms in recovery? (WKRC)

FORT THOMAS, Ky. (WKRC) - A breakthrough program in Northern Kentucky is making a big difference for new moms recovering from addiction.

What makes it unique, according to the Saint Elizabeth Physician Team, is that it's one of just a handful of recovery programs in the area where while mom is in recovery, her baby is at her side.

“I had been doing really well, and then I sorta messed up a little bit, and then I found out I was pregnant,” said Shae Clem, the mother of Myrissa, who is 6-months-old.

Clem says she has no doubt that she would not be sober or have a healthy little girl were it not for the program “Baby Steps”.

“Baby Steps helps moms that are either pregnant or parenting that are dealing with substance use disorder,” said Danielle Mathieu of the Baby Steps program.

“If more people knew, I feel like there would be a lot more sober people,” said Clem.

Myrissa is now six months old, and she is not just healthy but also happy, which is exactly the point, according to Danielle Mathieu.

The program is open to any woman struggling with addiction.

“Basically, any woman in the community that is struggling with substance use,” said Mathieu.

The goal of Baby Steps is to keep moms and babies together. 80 percent of them go through recovery with their children and they do it through what's called “Core 12”.

“We know that medication alone does not keep you sober, so it’s the medication in conjunction with treatment,” said Mathieu.

They hold everything from 12-step meetings to individual education sessions. It's run through the Saint Elizabeth Journey Recovery Center that also provides medical care and items every new mother and baby need.

If you ask Clem, she'll tell you what really made Baby Steps work for her:

“It is just a team that is really unstoppable,” said Clem.

That unstoppable team could use some gently used and new baby items, so if you can help or if you know a mom who needs this support, there is no out-of-pocket cost to mom, you can call 859-301-2501.

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