One of the most significant challenges individuals who are trying to achieve sobriety face is making friends in recovery. However, as difficult as this may be, it’s an integral part of maintaining long-term sobriety. During the early stages of recovery, loneliness is a dangerous emotion.
It could result in spending time with old acquaintances who are still abusing substances. That’s where the importance of making friends plays a critical role in curing loneliness and maintaining sobriety. For more information about how relationships play into your recovery, contact Sunflower Wellness Retreat today at 855.730.8825.
Understanding the Importance of Having Friends in Recovery
Making friends in recovery is essential for recovery success. Without having support from friendships, recovery becomes lonely, and that could trigger a relapse. Because it’s difficult to sever ties with old friends who continue to use, you must take this step.
Then, move on to forging new friends who are going through an addiction treatment program or completed one. Developing friendships early in recovery is important for the following reasons:
- It isn’t uncommon for people who are new to a recovery program to feel vulnerable. Those who are in the early stages of recovery feel out of place and unsure about their future. Friendships help alleviate some of these feelings as they give advice and support.
- Early in the sobriety process, people can benefit from forging friendships with those who achieved sobriety a long time ago. These individuals make excellent guides.
- It’s essential to create a strong support system around those who are new to recovery to prevent loneliness and spend time with those who are still using drugs or alcohol.
- Some who are new to recovery also experience boredom because they might feel like their life away from substance use is dull and meaningless. Unless they have friends to help, they could relapse when experiencing these feelings.
- Those who complete recovery programs together can become part of an alumni program where participants continue supporting each other.
How to Make Friends in Recovery
Knowing the importance of making friends in recovery is one thing, but how does one achieve this goal? You might feel like this task is daunting, particularly if substance abuse left you with low self-esteem. That lack of confidence might make you feel like you can’t make new friends.
Here are some simple strategies for how to make friends while you’re in recovery:
- Group therapy: Participating in group therapy sessions is an excellent way to make friends because others are going through similar experiences as you.
- Join clubs or other activities: Early into your recovery program, consider picking up a new hobby or taking classes to learn something new.
- Don’t be self-absorbed: It’s no mystery that substance abusers have an addictive personality, which causes them to be self-absorbed. It isn’t easy to form relationships if you’re too focused on yourself.
- Volunteer: Participating in a volunteer project is an excellent way to strengthen your recovery while simultaneously forming lasting friendships.
Developing a Circle of Support
Making friends in recovery also involves developing a circle of support. For example, if you participate in an aftercare program, find out if there’s an alumni program where it’s possible to remain in touch with those whom you formed a bond.
Identifying who is in your circle of support involves asking yourself the following questions:
- Who has been there to support me from the beginning?
- Are any friends willing to participate in my recovery journey?
- Does my support network include group therapy sessions, continued outpatient treatment, and other community services?
- Is there a gym local to me that I can become a member of where I can make new friends and enhance my sobriety journey?
Make New Friends at the Sunflower Wellness Retreat
We understand the challenges of making friends in recovery. We have the best tools and resources necessary to help you achieve that goal. No one should ever have to experience loneliness or any other dangerous emotion while going through recovery. We offer a range of recovery programs, including:
- Alcohol addiction treatment
- Heroin addiction treatment
- Opioid addiction treatment
- Benzo addiction treatment
- Cocaine addiction treatment
Contact Sunflower Wellness Retreat at 855.730.8825 to learn more about our resources and how we can help.