Regaining the confidence and affection of your loved ones after falling prey to addiction can be a very burdensome process especially when there are no recovery coaches or family therapy sessions involved. In many instances, the addiction treatment program often covered by insurance itself has been a very grueling and tiring experience for many people where the chance of relapse still remains coupled with that the burden of mending relationships with friends and family members can put individuals under immense pressure.
The lifestyle changes that addiction and addiction treatment has led to shaking self-confidence, energy levels, self-esteem, mental health, and a variety of things that someone only on the journey of sobriety may be able to understand. And all these factors need to be considered to bring life after addiction back to normal. The insurance companies are now very actively working to protect those affected, by introducing insurance programs aimed at substance abuse problems.
The good news is that friends and family members are not only willing to become a part of the treatment program, but addiction treatment centers are also now actively making programs where family members are closely involved. This would help in rebuilding things once the recovery process is over because rather than distancing from each other the patient and his loved one would be closely associated throughout the process.
However, we at Lantana believe that people tend to forget that you can only love someone if you love yourself. The plight of a substance abuse disorder is that patients tend to lose a major part of their personality if they don’t work on their own issues before giving their time and energy to something else.
So, the first step towards mending relationships and rebuilding life after addiction is working on yourself!
Rebuild Yourself Before Anything Else!
Beginning life after addiction, whether it’s drugs or alcohol that you are recovering from is a process full of stress. Stress can only be mitigated if proper guidance from support groups, treatment facilities, and recovery coaches is available.
1. Accept the Consequences
The first step towards getting yourself out of this helpless situation is accepting that a problem existed and you have now gotten past it, but the situations that you find yourself in each day are a consequence of it. All you need is to take baby steps in your recovery journey, be kind to yourself, let your emotions flow, take support wherever necessary and change the trajectory of your life slowly. Learn to live with your mistakes and look at drug rehab as a positive part of your life, as people with substance dependency often report feelings of guilt and shame. The fact that you have forgiven yourself and accepted the past will take you out of the constant guilt and neither would any family member or friends will be able to guilt-trip you.
2. Boost Your Self Esteem
A very common consequence of drug addiction and preceding treatment programs is a lack of self-esteem. People who have a lack of self-esteem usually fall prey to an addiction of any kind; however, even in life after rehab, patients are not able to regain it as “different perceptions of the self have unique roles in recovery from alcohol use disorders” (The Relationship of Self-Esteem and Self-Efficacy to Treatment Outcomes of Alcohol-Dependent Men and Women, Greenfield, 2009.) What you can do to boost it is start off with positive affirmations. Something like ‘I am proud of myself’ or ‘I have come a long way’ or ‘I don’t fear anything’ can help eradicate the negative thoughts. Such activities are a step towards change that makes you more optimistic and help boost it up. Once you believe in self-worth and have boosted self-esteem mending relationships is easier.
3. Regain Self Confidence
Regaining confidence plays a major role in the treatment journey of drug abuse and alcohol. People with addiction tend to overlook this important factor, but substance addiction is one of the most common causes of relapse and even addiction. Becoming confident again is also an internal battle the path to confidence is for solo travelers only. So listen to your mind and body, be kind to yourself, and build a relationship with yourself. Once you start valuing yourself getting out of vulnerable situations becomes easier, it makes you realize that you deserve a life of health, love, support, and sobriety becomes a top priority. Eventually, seeing yourself independent of drugs and away from rehab you will start becoming confident again by understanding the relationship between addiction, self, and identity. This confidence will consequentially allow you to become better versed and communicative in your relationships too!
4. Bring Your Energy Levels Back Up
Addiction changes your lifestyle completely, not just because you are addicted and dependent on drugs or alcohol but because it destroys your body internally. Your health keeps deteriorating and you fail to realize what’s going on. The impact of alcohol addiction is such that the Americans with Disabilities Act recognizes addiction as a disability “because it is an impairment that affects brain and neurological functions.” This proves that challenges faced by people fresh out of recovery and rehab are very natural and expected.
Another such challenge is low energy, it takes away all your motivation and increases the chance of relapse. Some tips that can help you have a healthy lifestyle are:
- Drink more water and eat a nutritious and well-balanced diet.
- Switch to supplements with the recommendation of your doctor if you feel overly low.
- Have a proper sleep schedule that allows your body to regenerate in sleep.
- A proper workout routine to keep your body active and fit.
- Find activities that you enjoy like reading, writing, dancing, or singing.
- Get connected with people who have successfully recovered.
These tips will for sure help make you feel better!
5. Prioritize Your Mental Health
Life after addiction is hard as it is, especially if you are one of those people who are under the constant guilt that their addiction and treatment have affected the people around them. Even though this is true to some extent but addiction is a disease for which proper addiction recovery programs are available. Support from family and friends is important in this recovery program; however if this support is unavailable then patients tend to get disheartened, slow down recovery, increase chances of relapse, and become prone to anxiety and depression. As a patient in recovery, you need to put yourself first and prioritize your mental health over other people. The things that disturb you and your mental peace shall be eliminated from your life.
Now that you have focused on yourself and moved past the challenges that you were facing on a deeply personal level it is time for the next stage, which encompasses people who surround you in sickness and in health.
Family is always there for you, so there has to be a way to fix the damage that drug addiction did.
Here’s How To Rebuild Your Relationships After Recovering From Drug Addiction
The biggest consequence of drugs is a lack of communication. Whenever there is a problem people turn towards drugs and ignore their families. Rather than communicating, they allow feelings of anger and unhappiness to persist and harm relationships. Relationships are based upon communication, so opening those avenues again is the most important part of life after addiction.
Learn healthy communication methods which allow you to be more vocal and be able to lend a listening ear too. Firstly, you can accept your mistakes and hold yourself accountable in front of your loved ones and let them know that you are working or have worked on making yourself better and now you want to work on their relationship. Let them know that you are learning to deal with your issues and that treatment has made you realize your mistakes. One of the things that substance abuse programs focus on is helping the patient start communication with his family and loved ones once again. Rehab is one of the best places to learn healthy things like these that eventually lead to a better and more fulfilled life.
2. Be Patient
The most common issue faced by patients is that their families and friends don’t believe them anymore. Even though the patients believe that rehab has helped them become a better person once again but for those who see their partner/friend/family go on a full-fledged bender it is hard to believe that there is anything like getting better.
The constant affirmations and pledges that you have to provide in order to build these relationships back up require the involvement of support groups and endless effort. The effort should come from both sides but as someone right out of recovery, things may be a little challenging for the patient despite sobriety. What they can do is be patient and understand that their family members suffered a great deal too and the tantrums that they are throwing right now are very natural, just make sure that family therapy sessions are never missed!
3. Learn to Differentiate
While extra effort and patience are needed from you, there are certain people who don’t deserve it. This could be the old circle that got you into this mess in the first place. Your old drug and alcohol buddies don’t need to reenter your life especially if they still haven’t given up on the bad habits. Similarly, there are going to be other people who may have not been the reason for your addiction but as soon as you begin your life after addiction the support from them was never there.
They don’t believe in you, mock you, show no signs of mending relationships, and do not appreciate you. These people can affect some patients in the most devastating ways by pushing them to relapse if they are close. Remember that these unhealthy relationships can be the ones closest to you which in no way means that they need to stay, anyone who hinders your progress shall go.
Life after addiction is all about rebuilding yourself with newfound confidence. Give yourself the time and love that you need to rebuild what’s most dear to you!
Set out on this new path of your life without drugs or alcohol and away from rehab with us today! Find our contact information on our website and get connected with us at today to begin the life that you have been looking forward to!