If you’ve been living at a sober home for a while, you may have questions regarding how to transition back home to your loved ones.
In this article, we’re taking a look at how to rejoin your loved ones after experiencing your time at a sober living house.
How to Rejoin Your Loved Ones
If you’ve been to rehab, you know that it’s a protected environment.
You’ve likely had limited contact with your loved ones, and you have been able to work through ways that you can handle tough situations that won’t lead to a relapse.
Now that you’re home again, it’s time to put all of the lessons you’ve learned into action. This can, of course, be more difficult than you might have originally thought.
Here are some tips on rejoining your loved ones and getting back into the swing of life after being in rehab.
Consider Whether the Environment Is Right for You
In an ideal world, all people leaving a rehabilitation center would return to loving homes in safe places where they were not exposed to the triggers that caused them to seek comfort in drugs or alcohol.
In reality, however, this is not always the case. If you are concerned that returning home will make it difficult for you to avoid a relapse, then it might be worth looking for a different place to live once you get out of rehab.
While you are still in rehab, you can begin asking healthy family members or close friends who live in a different location if you can stay with them while you look for a new place to go.
You could also consider whether going into transitional housing would be more beneficial for you than returning home to a less-than-supportive situation or a neighborhood where you will likely be tempted to turn to substances. This is something to discuss with your addiction counselor.
Include Your Loved Ones in Your Routines
You have learned in rehab that having good routines can help you avoid temptation and stay on the straight and narrow path during your recovery process.
When you return home, it can be very helpful to include some friends and family members in your daily routines. It will help you keep from becoming isolated, which, in turn, can help you avoid a relapse.
Exercising is often an important part of healthy life after recovery. The benefits associated with working out help to:
- Reduce stress
- Keep you occupied
- Improve your physical health
Having a family member or friend join you on workouts or in training for running a 5K race can give you the support you need to meet your goals.
You could also ask if you can join family members in their weekly faith observances, if this is now a part of your life. Or come up with other activities that will engage you and your loved ones, such as renovating your home, volunteering, or something else that you can do on a daily or weekly basis.
Allow Your Family and Friends to Support You
Don’t be afraid to ask for help during your recovery process and beyond. If you:
- Need rides to support group or counseling sessions, just ask.
- Are having a hard time balancing the things you need to do, maybe some friends or family members would not mind helping you on the weekends,
- Are feeling lonely, don’t be afraid to call up a relative or close friend and suggest getting coffee or just chatting on the phone.
Your friends and family members want you to remain sober, and most will be happy to help. They might not know what to do, so it will be up to you to advocate for yourself.
Don’t Be Afraid to Set Limits
It’s likely that your family and close friends will want to help you. However, there may come a time when you’d rather try to do things on your own. You also might want to spend time with friends that you made in rehab.
And of course, you will want to spend some time alone, reflecting, journaling, and just enjoying life.
You may find it hard to tell your loved ones that you need some space, and it might be difficult for them to give you that space. Try to be understanding of their concern, but also let them know what you need. You might want to reassure them that when you want to be alone, you’re not resorting to unhealthy behaviors.
If you are having trouble getting through to them, you might need to place firm limits. Try to do so in a way that won’t alienate your loved ones; they want what is best for you, and this transition is difficult for them, too.
Educate Your Loved Ones on the Signs of Relapse
One way that your loved ones can support you is by knowing about the symptoms of a relapse and what they can do to help you if you do end up relapsing.
Remember that about half of all people who go through rehab do relapse at least once.
There is no shame if this happens to you; it’s common and it’s something that you will be able to overcome. But having family members or close friends who are aware of the signs and able to take action can help you get past your relapse sooner rather than later.
Some things that can lead up to a relapse include having too many responsibilities to the point that you’re extremely overwhelmed, symptoms of depression, and having thoughts that a relapse can’t happen to you.
If you notice any of these cropping up, it is good to confide in someone.
Talk to your loved ones about what they can do to help you if they suspect a relapse. This is a good conversation to have once you are out of rehab, before a relapse has time to occur.
The rehabilitation part of recovery is a hurdle, but learning to live your regular life can be even more difficult.
Include your family and friends so they can provide good support to you as you walk this road.
While recovery can be a lifelong process, the hardest days in the beginning can be made easier by having supportive loved ones who you integrate back into your life.