Dear Dr. Romance:

I work at an Indian health clinic in northern California. I am a substance abuse counselor, or Certified Addiction Treatment Counselor . After scanning a book I found on a colleague's bookshelf called The Real Thirteenth Step
13th Step ebook
  I felt compelled to seek it out, and I found it on Kindle.

I have worked the 12-steps and once had enormous faith in that process. I still believe there is some healing there, but also that a much more compassionate process can be created. I am working on that and your book is assisting with that project. In examining the program with new found objectivity I agree with your assessment of the steps, but feel reluctant to recommend the steps as well. My studies have taken me in the direction of positive psychology, and I'm striving to correlate it with  the steps.

My motivation for writing comes from the belief that there is possibly a greater need for your book than ever. As you are probably aware 12-step is the mandate of choice among social and justice agencies across the country. I want to recommend your book to colleagues and clients.  I believe this book should be a part of the curriculum at A.D.S. programs everywhere. 

Dear Reader:

Thank you for your interest and comments about my book. Please do recommend it to people.  I'm delighted you're finding the book helpful, and I want to clarify that I am not reluctant to recommend the steps to my clients. I regularly refer people, and I simply urge them to use the steps wisely, and to seek out a group that's showing a lot of recovery. You and others in second or third stage recover may have outgrown the twelve steps, but for someone in the throes of addiction, it's a good place to start.

I'd be happy to have The Real 13th Step used in any treatment program. 

For low-cost phone counseling, email me at

Author's Bio: 

Tina B. Tessina, Ph.D. is a licensed psychotherapist in S. California since 1978 with over 30 years experience in counseling individuals and couples and author of 13 books in 17 languages, including It Ends With You: Grow Up and Out of Dysfunction; The Unofficial Guide to Dating Again; Money, Sex and Kids: Stop Fighting About the Three Things That Can Ruin Your Marriage, The Commuter Marriage, and her newest, Love Styles: How to Celebrate Your Differences. She writes the “Dr. Romance” blog, and the “Happiness Tips from Tina” email newsletter.