As an addict or a loved one of an addict, you need to know the truth about the struggles of early recovery. You or your loved one will face these struggles, and knowing the truth can help you develop a plan that can help the addict make it through these struggles a little easier.
What are the struggles
A newly recovered addict will face many struggles in the early days. Some of the hardest struggles are:
- Change in lifestyle
- Anger and irritability
- Cravings for the drug or alcohol even after withdrawals
- No longer associating with old “friends” who still use
- Having to make new sober friends
- Trouble with sleeping
- Job stresses
- Changes in family and coworkers relationships
- Shame and guilt of becoming addicted
These struggles can become more manageable with a plan and support to help the addict through the roughest times. Part of your recovery is to make a plan, find a support group or person, and learn the tools and skills needed to deal with the struggles ahead of you.
Planning can help
During recovery treatment, the addict will learn life skills to reduce the anxiety of the struggles they are about to face. If you go to family therapy with your loved one, make sure to attend therapy with an open mind. Ask questions about what you can do to support your loved one when they have successfully completed treatment and how you can help them during any struggles they may encounter.
One way to support them is to recognize that it is not going to be easy for them but you are willing to rally round them in their recovery.
If the addict continues to build on what they have learned in treatment such as a daily schedule, healthy eating, exercise, and forgiving themselves for the shame and guilt, they have a good chance of reducing the stress and anxiety of meeting new friends.
Dating can be a struggle as the addict now lives sober, and the person they go out on a date with may not. How the addict handles this will determine if they continue sobriety or relapse. If the addict is asked out by someone, they should tell that person before they set a date that they cannot drink alcohol or take drugs, so if it could be a coffee date or a walk in the park, that would be great.
Boredom can be reduced by learning a new hobby or taking up a hobby you gave up during your addiction. Take a class to learn a new skill to help you find better employment.
At 449 Recovery, we have a detox program that is monitored continuously, uses several types of therapy, and teaches life skills to help the addict reach and maintain recovery. Call us today (855) 435-7449 to learn more about the programs we offer. Our goal is to help each patient navigate the struggles of a new sober life.