Getting ready to leave treatment and feeling unsure about your next steps? Are you wondering if a sober living home is right for you?
Leaving the safety of treatment can be scary! Most people will be faced with returning to their jobs, families, and friends – if they are lucky enough to have them, that is. While some might find familiar people and routines comforting, others will be daunted by old environments, and perhaps, triggers.
If you’re not quite ready to face life on the outside head-on, a sober living home offers a comfortable step towards normal life, but with guardrails. Accountability, safety, and structure are just a few of the benefits. Read on for more!
Benefits of Sober Living Homes
- An alcohol- and drug-free living environment for those who are trying to maintain their sobriety.
- Standard treatment is not required, and group sessions, individual therapy or meetings like AA or NA are encouraged.
- Compliance with house rules is required. Rules may be: maintain your sobriety; pay a fee for living there; attend in-house meetings; complete household assignments, etc.
- Residents are welcome to stay for as long as they need all the while abiding by the rules.
- The goal of sober living houses is to provide the support and care you may not have in your home environment.
Treatment for addiction doesn’t stop once you leave residential rehab. For some, transitioning to a sober living house can offer the comfort and support needed to successfully maintain sobriety. Not everyone has a stable, supportive or safe environment to return to after they finish treatment. Continuing your recovery journey with the knowledge you have the support of your peers, the house staff, and your counselor or therapist. While in sober living, people successfully return to work, engage in activities that promote a healthy lifestyle, and build a support system.
Sober living homes help people remain accountable and keep recovery front-and-center. In the early days, it is invaluable to surround yourself with people who encourage you and fully support your commitment to sobriety.
Co-residents and on-site support staff share a strong feeling of accountability in sober living facilities. Plus, there is always someone who is available to you, whether you need a laugh, a shoulder to cry on, or just someone to talk to.
Many people find the need to reevaluate friendships once they have stopped drinking or taking drugs. Relationships rooted in getting wasted together can be tough to maintain while staying sober. (Read our article on choosing the right relationships in sobriety here.)
In a sober living home, you will live among others who are on a similar journey. They will understand cravings and powerlessness and will be working on their healing alongside you. Surrounding yourself with other who are dedicated to making changes and maintaining their sobriety is inspiring and can keep the fire lit for you.
Even better – relationships forged in early recovery can last for years, offering understanding and support, while helping prevent loneliness and isolation as you transition back into daily life.
Giving you a secure and encouraging foundation from which to recover is the main objective of sober living facilities. You’ll lessen your chance of relapsing by being isolated from any pressures that might exist in your neighborhood and from any environmental triggers that might be present.
Your chance of staying sober will be enforced by an environment where no alcohol, drugs, addictive prescription medications, or over-the-counter drugs are permitted.
The Proof is in the Research
Researchers found that residents of sober living houses can play a role in:
- Improvements in employment, well-being, and mental health
- Longer periods of abstinence
- Better attendance at therapy or in 12-step groups
- Improved social networks that bolstered long-term recovery