Betty Ford Clinic to Open Temporary Dallas Center. For 7-Year-Olds.

If former first lady Betty Ford didn't make it cool to go to rehab, she certainly helped erase some of the stigma associated with admitting to drug and alcohol abuse. She struggled publicly with alcoholism and painkiller addiction and, as a result, established the Betty Ford Center in California.

The clinic offers comprehensive treatment for substance abuse and has long been the go-to place for celebrities who want to clean up their act, or at least give the appearance of doing so. For three days next month, it will be expanding its operations to Dallas, teaming up with local outpatient treatment center Innovation 360 to provide support for children ages 7 to 12 and their caregivers.

The sessions aren't for pre-pubescent winos but for kids with family members struggling with addiction. They take place from 10 a.m. to 3 p.m. August 16-18 at Innovation 360's counseling center at 6600 LBJ Freeway where "trained counselors will offer activities such as art, games and videos that help kids gain an understanding of addiction and learn how to identify and express their feelings in a healthy way, according to a press release.

"Children are very often the innocent casualties in family-related alcohol and drug abuse situations," Kevin Gilliland, executive director at Innovation 360, says in the release. "Most of them don't understand what addiction is, so when a parent struggles with drug or alcohol abuse, the kids often blame themselves."

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Eric Nicholson
Contact: Eric Nicholson