The Key Benefits of Social Support to a Recovering Addict
Social support is one of the most crucial ingredients in the addiction recovery journey. All recovery experts advise that any recovering addict should find ways in which they can get quality social support. The support helps one to be more successful in living a sober life.
One can get the social support from family members, an anonymous recovery group or a halfway house. The social networks need to be aware of the challenges that one is going through so that they can offer objective and emphatic support. Therefore, the family members need to have gone through a counseling session so that they can understand how their behavior affects the behavior of the recovering addict.
Some of the main advantages of the social support include:
Self-Validation in Recovery
During recovery, one goes through a myriad of challenges. Some of these include the withdrawal symptoms, the craving for the drugs amongst others. When one hears others sharing about the same challenges during a support group, they are validated that they aren’t the only ones fighting through the challenges.
The validation gives them the courage they need to brave the challenges. They also get to hear of how the other clients are handling their problems. Therefore they get real practical steps on how they can stay sober despite the challenges.
An Increased Sense of Belonging in Sobriety
The family is essential in giving one the feeling of belonging. According to Maslow’s hierarchy of needs, the sense of belonging comes just after the basic needs. This goes to show just how much the human nature craves to feel loved, wanted and useful. The family unit is the best placed to provide this feeling. It becomes an incentive for the person to lead a sober life and refrain from any temptation towards relapse.
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Optimism About Life After Addiction Treatment
In a halfway house or an anonymous support group, one witnesses success stories. One can see a recovering addict live a sober life, get a decent job and led a fulfilling life. This creates motivation for the other recovering clients that despite the common challenges, they can also lead a sober and fruitful life.
Instrumental Group Support
In a group of other recovering addicts, one can get help on various life issues. For example, the group can refer one to a place where they can get an employment opportunity.
Family members that are supportive can be beneficial in offering practical recovering help like taking one to a recovery home. They can also encourage one to attend the 12-step program and even drive one to the venue of the meeting. This type of help is essential in making the recovering loved one have a sense of importance and usefulness.
In conclusion, social support, especially from the family, is important. However, the members should be careful not to enable the user. Enabling might seem like support; however, it makes the user less motivated to stop abusing drugs.
Reduced Triggers For Drug Use
Most addicts have been cast out by their family members: maybe not literally but psychologically. However, a family that is conscious of its role in helping the loved one to recover is keen to offer both the psychical shelter and the psychological shelter. Such a recovering addict has more reasons to live a sober life. The care and protection reduce their stress levels.
In a halfway house or during the support groups, the recovering addict meets other recovering addicts who have practically trodden through the same dark addiction path. They have an environment where they can get empathic support without judgment. An environment without judgment helps to reduce their stress levels and increase their success at recovery.