If you are in alcohol or drug addiction recovery, you’ve likely heard the saying “relapse is a part of recovery.” It echoes off the walls in most recovery rooms and group meetings and even though it holds some truth to it, it’s not our most favorite saying. While we don’t want to oversimplify relapse, it’s important to know what to do just in case it happens to you.
Getting Drug Addiction Help After You’ve Relapsed
For the recovering addict, nothing is worse than the feeling of knowing that your sobriety has been compromised. What steps should you take if this happens? First of all, take a deep breath and remember that these things happen and drug addiction help for relapse is available. While we’ve stressed that it doesn’t need to be a part of your recovery, it is still a possibility. You can also adhere to the following.
Acceptance After Relapse and Drug Addiction Help
Accept That You’ve Relapsed
A common train of thought after someone experiences relapse from drug addiction is, why bother trying again or maybe this is just the path that life has planned for me or even I’ve messed up, I’m doomed. This way of thinking is your disease trying to take you down. Accepting that you’ve relapsed is going to be that hardest part but also the most important. Once you accept it, you can begin to take the necessary steps toward resuming your path to recovery.
Accept That You’ve Made a Mistake
You’ve relapsed: you’ve made a mistake. And this is okay. The sooner you come to terms with it, the faster you can begin taking steps to resume working toward a fulfilling life of sobriety.
Another common reaction to relapse, is to blame those around us who didn’t try to warn or stop us from making this mistake. However, once you blame your loved ones, your responsibilities, or even your support group you are giving them the power and control over your recovery. The fact is, you are the one who calls the shots in regards to your recovery. It’s a choice you make regardless of pressures or causes. The more responsibility you accept, the more empowered you will be to being taking action and resume your path to drug addiction recovery.
Take Action Immediately
Next, reach out to your sponsor and tell them what happened. It likely won’t be a total surprise, since there are many signs of relapse that your sponsor specifically would have picked up on leading up to this moment. If you were provided with a relapse prevention plan, now would be a good time to revisit it and go over the steps you can take to prevent a future relapse from occurring.
Explore Treatment Options
Your sponsor will be able to help you make an immediate plan of action and depending on the severity of your relapse, it may be advisable to return to a residential drug rehab program or an outpatient addiction treatment program.
Reach Out to Family for Addiction Support
Families that are supportive, that have an understanding of addiction, and that are prepared to be a positive force in their loved one’s life, can be the most beneficial influence for someone who is struggling with addiction. Family involvement can help you maintain a substance-free home, help get you involved in healthy activities, and can provide encouragement when you are tempted to use.
Start Strong and Stay Strong
Once you have accepted your relapse, taken responsibility, and followed the necessary steps, you might start to feel like you’ve started all over again or that all the work you’ve done thus far has been undone. This couldn’t be further from the truth. Try to change your outlook on relapse and see it more as an experience that can be learned from instead of a failure to dwell upon.
It’s also important to note that even though you might feel like you’re starting over there is a part of you that will feel like you’ve done this before. It will feel like starting over or like you’ve done this all before but it’s important not to skip any steps along the way for example if you need to go back to treatment.
If you have relapsed and you don’t have a sponsor, The Discovery House addiction specialists are here to offer drug addiction help. If you or someone you love could benefit from addiction treatment because of a relapse, or for any reason, contact The Discovery House today at (818) 452-1676 to speak with an addiction counselor. We can provide information about the alcohol and drug treatment programs at our addiction rehab center and answer any questions you might have about addiction and recovery.