Home > Weekends of Recovery > 2013 Weekends of Recovery: Alta Advanced Weekend of Recovery

"Finding Emotional Balance: The Road to Empowerment"

Male Survivor 2013 Advanced Weekend of Recovery
Our 51st Weekend of Recovery

Alta Lodge - Alta, Utah (near Salt Lake City, Utah)

August 16-18, 2013


As men, and as survivors, it is common for us to get hijacked by our emotions, not understand them, and be afraid of them. This Advanced Weekend will enhance your understanding of your feelings and help you experience their full range in a safe way. You will have the opportunity to learn new skills and what is effective power so that you can develop new ways to be vulnerable and experience friendship, intimacy and healthy sexuality. You will be challenged and inspired to let go of your shame and loyalty to dysfunction by experimenting with tools that ground and deepen your resilience, playfulness and joy. As a community, you will be invited to develop a practice of self-compassion, self-worth and love.

In response to alumni requests, we have expanded this weekend to begin on Friday morning at 9:15 am and to end at 2 pm on Sunday. We encourage you to arrive on Thursday, and registration will be open on Thursday evening for all participants. Special package rates will be available to all who arrive on Thursday, and will include your meals prior to the actual beginning of the weekend on Friday morning. We anticipate our earlier ending on Sunday will allow for easier travel arrangements possible on Sunday for east coast participants.

This Advanced Weekend of Recovery is only open to any alumnus of a Level One MaleSurvivor Weekend of Recovery. This is our 10th visit to Alta Lodge, which tells you how much we love the facility, its extremely supportive and nurturing staff, and the gorgeous surroundings. Alta Lodge is located at 8,600 feet (2,700 meters) at the base of the Alta Ski Area in Utah's Wasatch Mountains. Alta Lodge, nestled in a quaint alpine setting at the top of Little Cottonwood Canyon, offers spectacular mountain views. During August, wildflowers are usually still in bloom, adding to the beauty of this setting. Alta Lodge is part of a rare tradition of country inns where the attentiveness and warmth of family hoteliers is combined with the pleasures of excellent dining and comfortable surroundings. The atmosphere of the Alta Lodge is relaxed, intimate and informal.

Facilitator Team:

Weekends of Recovery are facilitated by trained psychotherapists and educators, utilizing the same clinical boundaries and code of ethics as adopted by the American Psychological Association. The weekends are adjuncts to participants’ ongoing recovery work with individual and/or group psychotherapy, twelve step programs, and individual spiritual work, and are not meant to substitute for the participants’ local support systems that are consistent with their own recovery. Dr. Howard Fradkin, a Psychologist, and Jim Struve, a Licensed Clinical Social Worker, both with over 30 years of experience working with male survivors, co-chair the facilitator team. The team of facilitators includes other Psychologists, Social Workers, Marriage and Family Therapists, Mental Health Counselors and our own Mind-Body Awareness Specialist, Paul Linden. Biographies of all staff members for this weekend can be found on the MaleSurvivor website at www.malesurvivor.org. Additional staff for the Advanced Weekend are: Lee Beckstead, Bill Burmester, Andy Dishman, Sandi Forti, Rob Hawkings, ,Lynne MacDonell, and Mikele Rauch. MaleSurvivor reserves the right to make changes to the team dependent on the number of registrants.

Proposed Tentative Schedule (Subject to changes and modification)

Thursday, August 15, 2013
Check in to Alta Lodge available.

6:00 pm – 7:00 pmDinner for participants who arrive Thursday evening
6:00 pm – 8:00 pmFacilitator Dinner and Meeting
8:00 pm – 10:00 pmRegistration Opens

Friday, August 16, 2013

8:00 – 9:00Breakfast & Registration
9:00 – 9:15Break
9:15 – 10:00Intro to Alta and the weekend
10:00 – 10:45Co-Creating Safety with our Emotions
10:45 – 11:00Break
11:00 – 12:00Intro of participants
12:00 – 12:15Break
12:15 – 1:15Lunch
1:15 – 1:45Break
1:45 – 3:00Recognizing and Understanding Emotions
3:00 – 3:30Responding to your distress from a mindful and body-full place
3:30 – 4:00Embodying your feelings: emotional statues
4:00 – 4:30Break
4:30 – 6:00Small group-Sharing the vulnerability of your success
6:00 – 6:30Break
6:30 – 7:30Dinner
7:30 – 8:00Break
8:00 – 10:00Body Mapping
10:00 – 11:00Snack and a cozy fire
10:00 - 10:30Facilitator Meeting

Saturday, August 16, 2013

6:30 a.m.Gather for carpool drive to Devil's Castle
7:00 - 8:00Optional Sitting Meditation at Devil’s Castle
8:00 - 8:45Breakfast
8:45 - 9:00Break
9:00 - 9:30Check in
9:30 – 9:45Chi Gong Exercise
9:45 – 12:00Becoming disloyal to dysfunction & loyal to functionality
12:00 – 12:30Break/pick up lunch
12:30 - 1:30Lunch - Devil’s Castle
1:30 - 3:00Break-optional walk at Devil’s Castle or transport back to Alta Lodge
3:00 – 5:00Sculpting emotional blocks to healthy sexuality
5:00 - 5:15Break
5:15 – 6:30Small groups
6:30 – 6:45Break
6:45 – 7:45Dinner
8:00 – 10:00Shame Busting II
10:00- 10:15Break
10:15 – 11:00Facilitator Meeting
10:15 – 11:15Optional Outdoor pipe ceremony; Optional campfire- after the pipe ceremony ends

Sunday, August 17, 2013

7:00 - 8:00Optional morning mediation walk
8:15 -8:30Check in
8:30 – 9:45Embodying Love: Becoming Loving and Loveable
9:45 – 10:00Break
10:00 – 11:00Famous Alta Brunch – Deck Room
11:00 – 11:15Break
11:15 – 12:45Small Group
12:45 – 1:00Break
1:00- 2:00Closing

Is this Advanced Weekend for me? How Can I Prepare for the Weekend?

For those contemplating this advanced weekend, we encourage you to consider what you believe are next steps you want to take in your recovery relating to how you identify, express and manage your feelings, how you deal with your shame, and how comfortable you feel being powerful and connected to others. Oftentimes, survivors struggle to ask for the support they need, and because you’ve already been to a Weekend of Recovery, you may experience this Advanced weekend as a safer environment for you to take the emotional and/or physical risks and/or creative risks which will help you move forward. Past participants have told us that the experience of brotherhood and support they experienced at Level One grows even stronger as they get to reconnect with men from the weekend they attended and also connect with men from many other weekends.

This weekend is designed to help you develop skills which will help you be safer in your body, safer in your willingness to trust others as you share and become more vulnerable, and practice skills to learn how to effectively protect yourself while creating opportunities for deeper intimacy in your life. To achieve this, we'll help you identify how you've learned to be loyal to dysfunctional messages and dysfunctional people in your life, and help you develop the ability to be loyal to functional messages and to connect in more functional ways. While the weekend is designed to challenge you to take some steps out of your comfort zone, your boundaries will always be respected if you choose to opt out of any experiences we offer. Our hope is that the skills you practice here at the weekend will be transportable back to your own home and to the significant people in your life.

For those working with professionals, we recommend you discuss your planned participation in this weekend to get their feedback and suggestions for how you can benefit as much as possible from the experience while keeping yourself as safe as you need to be. As with Level One, if you are in therapy, we ask you to download the Advanced Weekend Therapist Letter of Support from the website and return it to us. If you have an already established support system of friends/family members/significant others, we also encourage you to talk with them about your participation so they can be available both before and after the retreat as needed to help you prepare and process your experiences.

If you are not in therapy, and/or do not yet have a support network, we encourage you to consider setting up an appointment with a therapist either before you come to the weekend, or after your return, and/or encourage you to explore what types of self-help groups and resources are available in your community or near by. This way you can follow up on some of the experiences and skills you learn that will help the weekend's learning stay fresh in your mind and help you apply what skills and awareness would most help your continuing recovery.

Required Screening Interview:

One of our staff members will be contacting you by phone within two weeks of when we receive your application to talk with you about your needs for the weekend and your readiness to participate. All participants must be able to safely and appropriately engage in structured group activities. If we have any concerns about you participating, we may suggest some steps you can take to enhance your readiness for this weekend or we may ask you to wait for a future weekend while you take some additional steps we believe would be important for you to benefit from the experience. Please do not schedule your travel arrangements until after your interview is completed and you have been told you have been accepted as a participant. The facilitator team will make every effort to complete that process as quickly as possible. The earlier you register, the more possible that will be (which of course could help you save money on transportation and by getting an early registration discount).

Survivors with a history of Sexual Offending:

MaleSurvivor understands that some survivors have sexually acted out in childhood, adolescence, or even adulthood. Therefore, during the pre-weekend interview, all applicants will be screened to identify any history that may fall within the range of sexual offending. Because some participants may experience safety concerns with people with such histories, 
we have an expectation that all potential participants will be honest in their screening interview and will disclose any such history or incidents in their past. The MaleSurvivor Facilitator team believes that ALL survivors have a right and an ability to heal, so we do not wish to automatically exclude them from a Weekend of Recovery.

When a survivor applicant with a history of sexual offending discloses this history, as required to be considered for a WoR, we conduct 2 further interviews, one between the applicant and a WoR co-chairperson and the other with the applicant’s current psychotherapist. The team then evaluates whether the applicant’s legal status, level of accountability and current safety qualifies him to participate in the weekend based on both his best interest and the best interest of all other participants. Our evaluation will assess the survivor’s history in the context of behaviors ranging from sexual reactivity to sexual offending. Screening will also consider past legal involvement as a youth or as an adult and placement on a Sexual Offender Registry.

We maintain a waiting list for men who are deemed inappropriate to attend one of our regularly scheduled Weekends because of the circumstances of their sexual offending behavior. This includes anyone who is currently placed on a Sexual Offender Registry. When we have gathered a sufficient number of names and the ability to facilitate such a weekend, it is our intention to offer a special weekend for these men to assist them to further their healing as survivors. Survivors may request to be placed on this waiting list by contacting Howard Fradkin, PhD, Weekends of Recovery Co-Chairperson at hfradkin@malesurvivor.org - include a brief description of why you are requesting to be placed on this waiting list.

Registration Options and Costs

Registration will be limited to the first 38 registrants.

Registration includes the costs of the facilitated Weekend of Recovery program, with our 11 skilled facilitators from the MaleSurvivor Weekend of Recovery Facilitator Team, plus lodging, 6 meals, and snacks.

Water, juices, tea and coffee, and a snack bag will be available throughout the weekend. We have a variety of accommodations in the lodge. If you are not a MaleSurvivor member, we encourage you to join the organization prior to registration both to secure a significant discount and to help support the work of MaleSurvivor.

Because the official weekend program will begin at 9:30 a.m. on Friday, it is advisable that you plan to arrive in Salt Lake City on Thursday. Alta Lodge has arranged to make rooms and food available for Thursday evening. In addition, rooms and meals will be available on Sunday for anyone who wishes to stay over until Monday morning. Therefore, we have expanded our registration to provide package options for anyone wishing to arrive at Alta Lodge on Thursday evening and/or stay over Sunday night. All package deals described on the grid below include the costs of the program itself.

Review the chart below to determine which option works best for you. There are also many hotels near the Salt Lake City International Airport and in the downtown area if you prefer budget lodging for either Thursday or Sunday. It is approximately 40 minutes from either the airport or downtown to Alta Lodge.

Advanced Weekend of Recovery Registration Package Options (“X” indicates what is included for each option).

NOTE: Option A is the basic package for attending the Advanced Weekend of Recovery. Options B, C, D, E, F & G allow for add-on packages of room and food at Alta Lodge for participants who arrive on Thursday and/or stay over until Monday.

Opt. A:

Wknd Only
Opt. B:
Advanced Wknd
+ Thurs. Lodging
& Dinner*
+ Fri Bkfst.
Opt. C:

Advanced Wknd
+ Thurs. Lodging
& Dinner*
+ Fri. Bkfst
+ Sun. Lodging &
+ Mon. Bkfst
Opt. D:
Advanced Wknd
+ Thurs. Lodging &
Fri. Bkfst
Opt. E:
Advanced Wknd
+ Thurs. Lodging
+ Fri. Bkfst
+ Sun Lodging &
+ Mon Bkfst
Opt. F:
Advanced Wknd
+ Sun. Lodging
& Dinner
+ Mon. Bkfst.
Opt. G:
Advanced Wknd
+ Fri. Bkfst
Fri. & Sat. Lodging X X X X X X X
Wknd Meals: Fri
Lunch thru Sun.
Thurs. Lodging X X X X
Sun. Lodging X X X
Thurs. Dinner X X
Fri. Bkfst X X X X X
Sun. Dinner X X X
Mon. Bkfst X X X

*Thursday Dinner Open from 6:30-8:00 pm; if you plan on arriving to Alta Lodge later than 8 pm, please choose an option that does not include Thursday dinner.

Advanced Weekend of Recovery Registration Costs

Below is a breakdown of the different room types and package options available (please refer to above chart that describes each of the 5 package options). There is a limited availability of each type of room selection – each type of accommodation will be distributed on a first come, first serve basis.

ROOM SELECTION DESCRIPTIONS: All rooms have private baths except for the dorm rooms (room selection #5), which has shared bath facilities. All rooms have a mountain view.

Room Selection #1:Corner Single Deluxe Bedroom, Private Balcony, Fireplace – East Wing
Room Selection #2:Single Bedroom, Standard King Bed - East or Middle Wing
Room Selection #3:Double Corner Deluxe Bedroom, with Sitting Area – Middle Wing
Room Selection #4:Double Standard Bedroom (1 Queen Bed and 1 Double Bed) Middle Wing
Room Selection #5:Triple/Quad Dorm Room, Shared Bath

The rates quoted below reflect early registration costs (with all payments due by June 15, 2013) and a MaleSurvivor member discount of $75. Registration after June 15nd will cost an additional $50.



Option A

(Basic Package)

Option B

(Add-on lodging/meals)

Option C

(Add-on lodging/meals)

Option D

(Add-on lodging/meals)

Option E

(Add-on lodging/meals)

Option F

(Add-on lodging / meals)

Option G

(Add – on Fri.

Brkfst Only)








Non- Member









Room Selection #1















Room Selection #2















Room Selection #3















Room Selection #4















Room Selection #5















PLEASE NOTE: All meals are pre-paid with your registration and there are no refunds for meals you do not eat; likewise all extra nights lodging are pre-paid and there are no refunds for late arrivals or early departures.

NOTE: Rates quoted above are early registration costs, with all payments due by June 15, 2013. Registration after June 15th, will increase by an additional $50.

To register for the weekend, we ask that you complete an online registration or mail in a registration form. To hold your spot for the weekend, you will be charged $150 deposit when you register online. You will have the choice on the registration form to either prepay your registration in full at the time of registration or opt for a payment plan. Prior to June 15th, if you opt for the payment plan, your total registration must be paid by June 15th in order to receive the $50 discount for early registration. In the case of you opting for the payment plan, you will provide your credit card to our confidential system, and your deposit will be charged the day you register. You will receive a registration confirmation letter that will provide a schedule of when the balance of your registration will be charged to your credit card. The system is set up to make equal monthly payments between now and June 15th, when your balance must be paid in full. If you desire to pay by check, please contact Trisha Massa, to arrange this, at ytamassa@aol.com.

REGISTRATION AFTER June 15th: You are subject to a $50 fee for later registration. Your credit card will be charged $150 the day you register, unless you opt to pay in full. If you choose a payment plan, then the remainder of your balance will be charged to your credit card on July 15th. Your registration will be contingent upon receipt of all registration fees by July 57th.

CANCELLATION FEES: A $50 processing fee will be charged for any cancellations up until July 15th. Any cancellation after July 15th will result in the forfeiting of any and all payments made to MaleSurvivor, unless we are able to replace you with another participant. Refunds after July 15th will only be made if and when we have received payment in full for another participant, minus the $50 processing fee.

Gifts to the Scholarship Fund:
When you register, or at any time, we invite you to contribute to the WOR Scholarship Fund, which you can access by clicking on the Weekend of Recovery tab, and then the sub-tag, Scholarship Donations. You can also contribute by adding funds to your registration package online or on the attached form. We continue to have many requests each Level One Weekend for scholarships, and all contributions of any size are welcome and will help another male survivor experience the gifts you have received by attending a Level I Weekend. The scholarship fund is primarily to help first time attendees at a Level I Weekend of Recovery, however we are offering some very limited scholarship help for this advanced weekend. If you want to apply, click on the tab Weekends of Recovery, and the subtab, Scholarship application form.


Chef Paul Raddon has been preparing meals of exceptional quality for Alta Lodge guests for over thirty years. The outstanding cuisine will certainly be one highlight of your Weekend of Recovery. A special treat is in store on Sunday, when we’ll get to visit the Alta Lodge Sunday Buffet, a grand buffet featuring gourmet breakfast and lunch and dessert items! All of your food and snacks are included in your registration fees. The Chef is prepared to provide vegetarian cuisine if you request it ahead of time. Other special dietary restrictions or needs must be indicated on your registration form. Bottled water, juices, coffee and tea, half and half and soy milk will be supplied all weekend long for you.

Other information about Alta Lodge:

No alcohol or un-prescribed drugs may be brought to the weekend. There is also a no smoking policy anywhere in the Lodge-including guest rooms, out of consideration for other guests. Cigar and pipe smoking are also prohibited. Guests may smoke outside the Lodge on the sundeck.

Please bring a jacket, hat, & some warm clothes if you are sensitive to the cold. Temperatures may be as low as the upper 40’s at night and should be in the 60’s & 70’s during the daytime. Average high temperature is 72, and average low is 50. Remember mountain air can feel chilly once the sun sets. Sunscreen is strongly advised - remember that sunrays are considerably more intense at mountain elevations. A hat with a brim is also very helpful to protect you from the sun.

Alta Lodge is handicap accessible, however if you have any special physical needs, please let us know at the time of registration so that we can make plans to accommodate your physical abilities.

There are some spectacular hiking trails around Alta. If you plan to participate in any hiking activities, please pack hiking boots (or shoes comfortable for easy & moderate hiking trails), a hiking stick (if you use one), & a day pack.

All bedding, towels, hair dryers, shampoo and shower gel are provided.


Alta Lodge is at 8500 feet altitude. It is not uncommon for people to experience minor physical symptoms above 8000 feet. (Symptoms can include headache, loss of appetite, & fatigue.) There are no specific factors such as age, sex, or physical condition that correlate with susceptibility to the effects of altitude.

Some people get it and some people don't, and some people are simply more susceptible than others. Here’s some tips for how to deal with any effects of altitude that you may experience during the retreat:

  • -Stay properly hydrated. Acclimatization is often accompanied by fluid loss, so you need to drink lots of fluids to remain properly hydrated.
  • -Take it easy; don't over-exert yourself when you first get up to altitude. Be prepared that tasks such as climbing stairs may require more physical exertion than you’re used to for the same task at a lower elevation. Light activity during the day is better than sleeping because respiration decreases during sleep, exacerbating the symptoms.
  • -Avoid tobacco and alcohol and other depressant drugs including, barbiturates, tranquilizers, and sleeping pills. These depressants further decrease the respiratory drive during sleep resulting in a worsening of the symptoms. The acclimatization process is inhibited by dehydration, over-exertion, and alcohol and other depressant drugs.
  • -If you have any concerns about your susceptibility to the effects of altitude, please consult with your physician. Diamox (Acetazolamide) is a prescription medication that can moderate the side effects of altitude for most people. However, since it takes a while for Diamox to have an effect, it is advisable to start taking it 24 hours before you go to altitude.


The weekend begins at 9:15 am on Friday, and ends Sunday at 2 pm. Alta Lodge is only 32 miles from the Salt Lake City International Airport, generally a 45 to 60 minute cab ride, and 40 minutes from downtown Salt Lake City. The final 8 miles of the drive is up a winding and scenic canyon road. You can arrange your transportation from Salt Lake International City Airport to the Alta Lodge through the Alta Shuttle at 800-255-1841 or www.canyontransport.com and reservations must be made at least 24 hours in advance. The estimated cost is $58 per person round trip (not including gratuity). Price is subject to change. Rental car information is available at www.slcairport.com. Once you register and are interviewed and accepted, you will be able to access the transportation bulletin board under the MaleSurvivor Alumni area. On that board, you can communicate with other participants regarding sharing rooms and sharing rides to and from Alta. Nine airlines offer service to Salt Lake City International Airport: Alaska Air, American, Delta, Frontier, JetBlue, Sky West, Southwest, United and US Airways.

Given travel time, we recommend all participants plan to arrive on Thursday; and plan to depart on Sunday no earlier than 4:30 pm from Salt Lake City. Please be sure to review our arrival policy below before making your travel plans. If you cannot accommodate your schedule to arrive and depart at these times, please be considerate and do not register. We require all participants plan to stay until the end of the weekend on Sunday to allow you and the community sufficient time for closure.

Please do not schedule your travel arrangements until after your interview is completed and you have been told you have been accepted as a participant. The facilitator team will make every effort to complete that process as quickly as possible. The earlier you register, the more possible that will be (which of course could help you save money on transportation and by getting an early registration discount).


Because this is an Advanced Weekend, and because we are starting early on Friday, we encourage you to book a room at Alta Lodge prior to the start of the weekend, and you may also plan on staying over after the weekend. Fees for extra nights of lodging and extra meals are indicated in the package options. Please note the facilitators will not be available to help on Thursday as we will be busy planning for the weekend. There are other dining options in the area, although be aware they are somewhat limited as ski season is weeks after our visit to the lodge.


Salt Lake City is serviced by train on Amtrak (www.amtrak.com) .

Buses are provided by Greyhound (www.greyhound.com)

By car, Salt Lake City is accessed via I-80 (east-west) and I-15 (north-south)

Arrival and Departure Policy

Safety for all participants is our utmost concern. Therefore, it is a requirement that in order to participate in the weekend, participants must arrive at the beginning of the weekend, at our meeting room Our Lady of the Snows, at 9:15 am on Friday. The absolute deadline is 10 am on Friday, when the safety exercise begins. In planning your trip, you are expected to take into consideration the unpredictable delays that may accompany your travel. While we understand you may encounter delays for many reasons, we are unable to allow anyone to begin the weekend if you arrive later than 10 am on Friday. In other words, you cannot be admitted to the weekend after 10 am for any reason. If you are experiencing a delay, we request you to call us to inform us of your arrival status. It is important to understand that in the event of your inability to attend due to late arrival, you will forfeit all monies paid for your registration. One strategy to avoid this situation is to arrive in Salt Lake City the night before, and stay at Alta or some other hotel in the Salt Lake City area. Your consideration of this policy will help strengthen the feeling of safety for all participants and help us to build a community.

Regarding departure, we also require if you are planning on attending the weekend, you plan to stay until the end at 2 pm. As you know from Level One, the end of the weekend is as important as the beginning, and for some participants, we know saying goodbye may be one of those growth areas you are more uncomfortable with. Please arrange your transportation accordingly so you and all of us can benefit from your participation the entire weekend.

Therapist Recommendation Letter:

When you register online and click on Weekends of Recovery, you will notice a tab that says “therapist letter of support”. Be sure you click on the Advanced Weekend letter of support, and not the Level I letter. We ask that all participants who are currently in therapy bring this letter to your therapist prior to the weekend, and ask them to complete it with you and send it back to us by August 8th. The information in this letter will help us to provide for any additional needs you may have for safety. It is our intention to use this letter to help ensure your safety, and in no way is it intended to disempower you or cast doubt on your own judgment about your readiness to participate in the weekend.


Questions can be directed to: