Going home after treatment can be a strange experience. Not only have you been away for at least a month, you are sober, perhaps for the first time in years. You’ve spent a lot of time with a therapist and with other people in recovery. Life probably looks a lot different from when you started. It can feel disorienting, but it’s also a chance to leave your old ways behind. Here are some things to do right away so you don’t lose the momentum you gained in treatment.
Make sure your house is clean.
Ideally, there will be no alcohol, drugs, or drug paraphernalia in your house when you arrive. Typically, a friend of family member will take care of this for you while you’re in treatment. However, it might be good to double check. Look in coat pockets and in old hiding places to make sure everything is gone. Have someone with you to make sure you get rid of anything you find. It may also help to clean your house more generally. Living in a clean, comfortable space will make you feel better and give you a fresh start.
Get involved with a group.
Get involved with a mutual support group right away. Most people will choose some variety of 12-step program. You may already be involved with one. If so, great; keep going regularly. Otherwise, get started on finding a group that suits you. 12-step programs aren’t the only option either. Groups such as SMART Recovery, Refuge Recovery, and LifeRing have many meetings throughout the country as well as a large online presence. Getting involved in a group right away will help consolidate what you learned in treatment and help you make new sober friends.
Go to follow-up appointments.
Good treatment programs include follow-up care with a therapist or counselor. They also check in with their alumni to find out how things are going. Make full use of these services. You don’t want to feel like the door slammed shut behind you when you left treatment.
Make time for sober friends.
You probably made some sober friends during treatment and you will probably make more friends in mutual aid meetings. Follow up by asking some people to get lunch or coffee out in the real world. You want as many sober connections as possible. Also, stay away from old drinking buddies and people you used to use with. After your long absence, it should be just a matter of not renewing contact.
Stick to your recovery plan.
You should have worked out a recovery plan with your therapist or counselor. Don’t wait to to get settled or anything else before working the plan. Get started right away.
If you or someone you love is struggling with addiction or mental illness, we can help. Recovery Ways is a premier drug and alcohol addiction treatment facility located in Salt Lake City, Utah. We have the resources to effectively treat a dual diagnosis. Our mission is to provide the most cost-effective, accessible substance abuse treatment to as many people as possible. Request information online or call us today at 1-888-986-7848.