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  • Writer's pictureDebbie Laaser

The Laaser Legacy Foundation

"Since The Laaser Legacy Foundation was founded in mid-2021 we have used over $26,000 of donations to help people get a ‘hand up’ in something that might be life changing.  We are proud to tell donors that 100% of their donations are used to support our mission."

- Debbie Laaser

MA, LMFT

 
woman working from home on a laptop
 

I have mentioned in other podcasts and books that when Mark’s and my life 'crashed’ as the discovery of his sexual addiction was revealed, we were directed to exceptional help very quickly. When I look back now, I am sure that God was orchestrating those resources for us. There was in-patient treatment for Mark just three days after the discovery—he went to the first treatment center for sexual addiction located in the Minneapolis area.


Together we were at ‘Family Week’ at the treatment center which propelled me quickly into information and community of other betrayed spouses. And as soon as Mark left treatment, his counselors arranged for both of us to begin counseling individually and as a couple in our hometown. It was as if we were enrolled in the graduate program for healing unwanted sexual behaviors. Our schedules were packed with appointments, meetings, new friends, and growth. It was hard and we were "all in".

There was another opportunity that I haven’t talked about with many people.  It came about 18 months into our journey.  I had forgotten about it until recently when the board members of my newly formed non-profit, The Laaser Legacy Foundation, and I were meeting.  I was telling them about the invitation that Mark and I received from The Golden Valley Treatment Center.  Dr. Patrick Carnes and a colleague of his had developed a couples’ intensive called, We Came to Believe.  Couples were to come to the Island House, located on the facility’s property, for two 3-day programs separated by 8 weeks to learn how to process the 12 Steps as a couple.  We had just relocated to Minneapolis to begin a new chapter in our healing.  Boxes were not unpacked, we didn’t know many people who could help with our three young children, and the greatest barrier was that we had little extra money to pay for the program.  That was embarrassing, and it was true.  We had come from a year of no employment for Mark and quite a few months of job hunting before we landed in Minneapolis, the home of 10,000 lakes and 10,000 treatment opportunities (we were told)!


I know Mark had a relationship at that point that allowed him to be honest with Pat Carnes.  Once again, God’s hand was directing our path.  We were told that they would scholarship us into the program.  They really wanted us to experience this new recovery material.  I was unsure.  I was exhausted with all the change, all the unknowns, all the commitment to find wellness in this ‘crash’.  And it won’t surprise you to know that Mark was all in! 


We accepted the scholarship and found this venture to be another life-changing experience in our journey.  Those of you who know Pat through his books or speaking, know what a brilliant mind he has for the recovery journey.  He has always been on the cutting edge of concepts, research, and practical applications.  While there were 12 Step groups for many addictions, no one had attempted to bring together a couple to explore a journey together through these steps.  We had many assignments to talk through on the beautiful grounds of that property.  We became very close to the other couples who were there.  It was another of those opportunities that catapulted us into another layer of transforming pain into growth. 


Mark and I eventually were asked to lead those intensives.  And it was from our connections there that several of us local couples met regularly and eventually formed Recovering Couples Anonymous along with Pat Carnes.  Today you can still find this organization in the US and around the world.  These experiences also led us to create our own 3-day intensives for individuals and couples.  The Men’s Journey Workshop, The Women’s Journey Workshop, and The Couples’ Journey Workshop are part of our regular services at Faithful & True to those looking to transform the despair of addiction. 


So why do I spend all this time sharing this story with you?  It occurred to our board members that this is exactly what The Laaser Legacy Foundation was created to do—to offer partial scholarships to help people come to our workshops or other healing therapies when finances would prevent them from doing so.  We had people who were willing to pay it forward for us.  And we would like to be able to do the same.  We have many expenses to keep our counseling center a welcoming and personalized place for many to come to.  Our Foundation is offering tax-deductible donations to expand our teachings and counseling to more people in search of hope.


Since The Laaser Legacy Foundation was founded in mid-2021, we have provided over 50 clients with partial scholarships to our workshops, 1 for in-patient treatment, and supplied resources to a couple in South Africa who we are supporting to start a sexual addiction recovery program in their country. We have used over $26,000 of donations to help people get a ‘hand up’ in something that might be life changing.  We are proud to tell donors that 100% of their donations are used to support our mission. If you have a passion to support addiction and betrayal recovery, we hope you will consider a tax-deductible donation to the Laaser Legacy Foundation.  More information is available on our website here: www.laaserlegacy.com.  Additionally, we have recently aired a podcast on the Laaser Legacy Foundation. Please give that episode a listen!

 

Dr. Greg Miller

Debbie Laaser MA, LMFT, became the Director of Faithful & True, in 2019 after her husband, Mark's passing. She has facilitated therapy groups, individual counseling, and 3-Day Intensives for betrayed wives for over 20 years. Debbie is the author of several books, and her recent research project, "Posttraumatic Growth in Relationally Betrayed Women" was published in the Journal of Marital and Family Therapy.

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