When it comes to addiction recovery and sober living, men and women have different needs.
For the best result, you should seek out the help and support specific to your needs. In this article, we’re taking a closer
In this article, we’re taking a closer look at several important sober living tips for men.
Sober Living Tips for Men
The National Institute on Drug Abuse report significant differences in the substance abuse between men and women.
With marijuana use, men develop more of an addiction, combine marijuana use with other substances, struggle more with anti-social issues. With prescription pain medicines, there were one million more reported male users than female.
Other reports show that men use drugs more frequently and in greater quantity than women. Men start binge-drinking at an earlier age and are five times more likely to develop a substance use disorder. Unfortunately, men are less likely to be forthcoming with history of trauma and abuse.
Research on the male brain when consuming alcohol found that dopamine is released in greater quantities than in the brain of women. This means alcohol can have a stronger effect on men, even though women require less alcohol to feel the effects.
Many therapists and treatment center professionals support the idea of gender-specific programming because men and women differ so much throughout their addiction history, current use, and how they recover.
Men typically need an incentive to seek treatment. This can come in the form of going to treatment versus going to jail, a stipulation of probation or parole, or intervention from family.
So, if men should seek treatment programs that provide services specific to men, shouldn’t they also seek sober living options specific to men also?
Yes, they should. Sober living homes should not be co-ed.
That’s because what a man needs to help them stay sober is much different than that of women. Even the tips for sober living are specific to males.
Here are several sober living tips for men.
Engage in Aftercare Treatment
When you leave inpatient treatment, you are leaving a secure, structured environment where your days are planned for you, your meals are provided, and all you must do is follow the plan.
In sober living, you take back control of your time and how you fill that time. To maintain your sobriety, engage in aftercare treatment. The more, the better.
This sober living tip can also mean you attend support groups, hold meetings in the sober home, continue going to individual counseling. Recovery is too new right now to skip the services available to you.
Take Care of Yourself
Your male physical and mental health are essential to your recovery. If either one is in poor condition, relapse will become harder to avoid.
You spent a long time damaging your body and brain with your addiction. You need medical help in bringing your health back into balance.
Establish a relationship with a physician who can give you a complete physical. If any ailments are discovered, follow through on any testing or procedures recommended by the doctor. This sober living tip helps you become more mindful of your body’s needs.
Building support is a sober living tip that has helped many stay sober.
As you know, it’s hard to be an addict without someone enabling you. Someone gives you support, even if it’s in a negative way.
You need support in recovery too. Positive support can help you stay sober. It involves other sober friends and family members, peer to peer mentoring, sponsors, support group members and meetings, and counselors.
The more support you can put between you and your addiction, the greater the odds you will be successful in recovery.
Whether you are in a relationship already or wishing you had one, now is not the time to engage in romantic activities. This is one sober living tip you must follow to prevent relapse.
Activities associated with romance can spike dopamine levels just like your drug of choice did. If not careful, you could move into a new addiction, sex.
Romantic relationships require a lot more energy and time than what you can give right now. Your priority is staying sober. Romantic relationships can become confusing and stressful at times and this could lead to giving in to temptations.
Until you are stronger, stay romance free. Your relationships will be better because of this.
If you start thinking about your life a year or two or more in the future, you may get overwhelmed. Even six months from now can seem like a long time.
Instead, think about daily or weekly goals. Write them down and check them off every day. This can give you a feeling of accomplishment and reward, letting you know you are on the right track.
If you set goals, make them short-term for now. Make them realistic and then work towards meeting them.
Pick the Right Visitors
Depending on your sober home, you may or may not be allowed to have visitors. Choosing the right visitors is a self-protective sober living tip. You don’t want to pick your sibling who is still using and will likely try to slip you something while visiting.
Don’t invite anyone who will put you down or criticize you, making you want to give up on recovery.
Instead, invite someone who will show their pride in you for getting help, and will leave you feeling encouraged to continue your recovery journey.
Keep in mind, it’s okay to stay in sober living without having visitors. Sometimes that is the best choice for everyone.
Giving back feels good. When you see your work has made someone else happy, you feel rewarded. This feeling of reward is one that comes naturally.
Volunteer in the community and provide service to those less fortunate. You may be surprised how being selfless can help you stay in recovery.
Don’t Give Up
Never ever ever give up. If you slip, get right back into treatment. Don’t beat yourself up, don’t make yourself feel guilty. Life will not always be perfect now that you are sober. When tested, make the right choice.
Choose to reach out for support from your peers or therapists. Choose to follow these sober living tips. Choose to stay on track. You can do this.
Now that you’ve discovered several sober living tips for men, you can explore whether or not they’re best for you.
Everyone is different in what we need to succeed, so be sure to take the time to approach it as a practice. It’s about discovering what works for you, not everyone else.