Starting recovery at a young age can be intimidating and difficult in itself. Add to that the excitement and insecurity of starting college for the first time, or returning to a familiar college party scene, threats to sobriety increase. For people in their late teens and early 20’s to admit and accept that they have a substance abuse problem is a courageous step, particularly given the fact that peer pressure to drink and use runs high. Young students need extra encouragement and support to maintain sobriety as they head back to school.
Make Sobriety Top Priority
All recovering alcoholics and addicts, no matter what age, need to put sobriety first. For young people, making sobriety a priority takes a concerted effort. It needs to come before social life, before relationships, before sports and even before homework because none of those things are accomplished well if one is abusing drugs or alcohol. Maintaining sobriety means making time for support group meetings and, in some cases, continued personal therapy. For the college-age person in recovery, sobriety also means paying attention to stress levels, maintaining healthful eating habits and sleeping hours, and keeping balance in mental, emotional, spiritual and physical well being. It’s a tall order, but it can be done.
Be Mindful About Staying Sober
College students can avoid relapse if they put some recovery tools in their backpacks.
Find Friends With Same Values
Although it may be impossible to believe, plenty of college-age people avoid participating in the party scene. Find out who they are, and make them your social group.
Find Housing Away From Campus
Even though all college housing might have temptation, college dorms on campus notoriously become party scenes. Find a homelike atmosphere will help maintain serenity and sobriety.
Support Other Sober People
Help other sober people by letting them know that they don’t have to be in the party scene to be acknowledged. Find places to go together to enjoy a sober social life.
Learn To Enjoy Alcohol-Free Parties
When other people drink, it is not necessary to join them. It may be tempting, so avoiding drinking parties would be best. Even if alcohol is available, you don’t need to drink it.
Packing the right tools as you head back to college is not only important for your success, but it is paramount to your recovery as well. What tips have helped you through the stress of college? Share them below or join the conversation on our Facebook page.