How to Build a Support System After Treatment

The most dangerous thing recovering patients can do after drug addiction treatment is thinking they can do it alone. You have to build your own support system when you step out that door and back into your life. The chance of not reverting back to your old way just multiplies if you have your own family and friends surrounding you.

What is a Support System?

If you were hooked to mind-altering substances, whether its drugs or alcohol, your mental condition is going to be very fragile. The problem goes much deeper than just changing mindset as your body is still trying to flush out some of the toxins and bad habits that you acquired over the years as a result of substance abuse.

A support system is people you trust with your life, people you know won’t lead you astray, and people who really want to help you pull through. They don’t necessarily have to be family, but friends, your teacher, neighbors, or even a priest. What’s important is they are willing to accompany you in your journey to recovery.

How to Build Your Support System

· Make a List of People You Trust. Make a list of people in your life who you think are willing to commit to your recovery. Then consider ranking them by order of their commitment to you. You may have a very close friend, but his schedule may not permit him to be with you when the time comes. Support is not enough, what’s more, important is to be there when you most need the help.

· Ask for assistance. Sometimes, it’s as easy as just opening yourself up to somebody else. It can sometimes be awkward, especially if you have done some things before that you are not proud of. But don’t underestimate people’s willingness to help. But the first step must come from you.

· Join support groups. Once you have your own core group and confident about their dedication to support you as you seek treatment for drug addiction, you may need to join a group of recovering patients. While your friends can give you sympathy and lending hand, sometimes you may need empathy. And you can only get that from people who also went through the same struggles as you did.

· Be open at work. Don’t hide from your co-workers the fact that you went into rehab. They can serve as an additional support group. You should realize, however, that not everybody is going to be supportive at work, and some of them might badmouth you or spread some gossip. While your support group can insulate you from the hate, the important thing is to be even-keeled. You shouldn’t let a few people get you down.

Fractured relationships

One of the consequences of addiction is the fractured relationships. Oftentimes, their drug-addled mental state did not really consider the feelings of people they love. So you should realize that while you are recovering, bear in mind that you broke their trust before. You are actually going on a journey together to find yourselves as individual persons, and also rediscover each other within the dynamics of your relationship.

Postpone romantic connections

While you are still recovering, avoid entering into a relationship with anybody, at least for the time being. You are in a very vulnerable state right after your drug addiction treatment and prone to slipping back at the slightest trigger. It’s important to stay alone for the meantime, along with the help of your support group, not just to heal your body and mind, but also to give time to love yourself again.

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