Isolation significantly impacts and influences addiction – loneliness can cause a person to search for a coping mechanism. As addiction progresses, someone may begin to isolate more and more from their friends and family. The cure for this is precisely the opposite – finding people you can be around and lean on in times of hardship. Finding your sober family and creating deep bonds can help you heal more than you may think. Many individuals who have gone through recovery will state that their sober friends are one of the many reasons they were able to maintain their sobriety. The importance of your sober family cannot be understated.
How Social Bonds Help Recovery
Going to treatment can be intimidating when you are anxious about therapy, healing, and confronting the things that drove you to addiction in the first place. However, it can also be difficult going to a new site, not knowing anyone. Finding people in treatment you can open up to and lean on in recovery can make all the difference in your healing. Early recovery can make you feel extremely vulnerable, and reassurance from individuals already at the treatment facility can help calm those fears.
Talking to individuals who have gone through the early stages of treatment and are doing well can profoundly affect the person who has just entered the facility. Advice can be shared as well as support to guide the new person through the process. Boredom and loneliness are common relapse triggers, meaning that new friends can help avoid these by filling your free time with companionship and sober activities.
Benefits of Sober Friendships
The benefits of sober friendships and bonds don’t stop at preventing boredom and loneliness or guiding you through treatment. Numerous benefits can help you not only in your recovery but also in everyday life. Sober friendships can bring you needed emotional support as you navigate life in and after treatment. These friends can encourage your progress and keep you going on your journey to recovery. Physical support can also help, such as preparing to go home or needing a ride to a support group. Sober friends can help you maintain recovery in times of hardship when you need a ride, help with moving, or help with going through your recovery plan.
Sober friends are also the people who will best understand the importance of dates such as your sober birthday. Celebrating these milestones can motivate you to monitor your actions, helping you maintain recovery. Your friends can also point out if they see anything problematic in your life that may hinder your recovery.
How Do I Make Friends in Recovery?
Those struggling with addiction may also suffer from low self-esteem and low self-confidence, meaning that making friends may be intimidating. However, you should remember that other individuals in recovery most likely felt the same way as you do at one point or another. There are several steps to take to help ease you into the process of making friends and help you conquer your fears behind it.
Join a Support Group
If you are in a treatment facility, you most likely are already going to support groups. Support groups contain like-minded people who may suffer from similar disorders, making these meetings a great place to meet other sober individuals. People at support groups can give advice regarding your sobriety and invite you to join in fun, sober activities. When you have fun in sobriety, it is easier to resist the temptation of relapse. Go to a support group and say hi; there are plenty of friendly people who will make you feel welcomed.
Work on Yourself
The first step in making new friendships is to ensure you are working on yourself, becoming a better version of you that people may want to be friends with. Doing the work on yourself will help you to find good, healthy, sober friends. Consider the kind of friend you are looking for and try to be that person for others. Work on being more supportive and willing to open up to others, so they want to be your friend.
There are multiple online forums and chat rooms for sober individuals to discuss sobriety, goals, advice, and just have fun together. If you are looking to make new sober connections, and find your sober family, consider joining an online forum dedicated to helping sober people meet each other.
Addiction can be a lonely experience that causes you to withdraw from family, friends, and activities you used to be interested in. Once you enter treatment and begin your path to healing, you must learn how to open up and connect with other sober individuals. Sober friendships are necessary for a successful journey in recovery. These people can support you in times of hardship, give you advice, and praise your triumphs in sobriety. Friends will understand the importance of sobriety and recovery, which is excellent for your own healing. When you surround yourself with people who do not have your sobriety in their interest, you may be at risk for relapse. Work on making more sober friendships both in and out of treatment. You can do this by going to support groups, joining online forums, and ensuring you are a good friend yourself. At Everlast Recovery Centers, we understand the importance of sober friendships and want to encourage them between our residents. For more information, call us today at 866-DETOX-25