Building a Support System in Recovery

Building a Support System in RecoverySelect a Residential Rehabilitation Facility in a New Location with Different Influences

Without caring and supportive individuals in your daily life, you are more likely to relapse back into old patterns of behavior, leading to drinking or using again. One of the reasons that residential rehabilitation is encouraged over outpatient programs is to get a substance abuser away from old neighborhoods and friends. If you are concerned that staying in a residential facility near your home is going to lead to a relapse due to proximity to bad influences, select a program in another area. This is a good way to start building your support system.

Choose a Rehabilitation Facility with Supportive Counselors
Entering a rehabilitation facility for addiction is a wise choice. First, it is important for you to choose the right detoxification and rehabilitation facility for your particular form of addiction. Some facilities have counselors who are knowledgeable about helping individuals with a cocaine addiction while another may specialize in treatment for methamphetamine addiction. If you are addicted to more than one substance or have a co-occurring condition such as depression or an anxiety disorder, finding a rehabilitation facility with counselors that have experience helping those with additional health concerns will benefit your recovery greatly.

Reconnect with Relatives and Friends to Build a Support Team
The relatives and friends who are encouraging you to enter a rehabilitation program are often the first individuals on your support team. Unfortunately, many substance abusers do not have a supportive family or friends because they grew up in a difficult environment or have only associated with others suffering from addiction. While you are participating in rehabilitation, you are encouraged to mend the broken relationships with friends and family in order to build a support team during recovery as well as for after leaving residential care.
Find a Support Team at 12-Step Meetings or Spiritual Groups
A recovering substance abuser in a rehabilitation program is often required to attend daily 12-step meetings that were created by Alcoholics Anonymous. This organization has meetings in hundreds of locations throughout the world and has expanded to also having Drug Anonymous meetings. These meetings are a vital resource for those affected with substance abuse needing a support system, including a sponsor. A sponsor is someone who has overcome an addiction, understands the 12-step process, and is willing to assist someone on their road to a strong and healthy recovery. In a rehabilitation facility, during aftercare in a sober house or outpatient program, you might meet other individuals who you have a connection to. These friends are also a valuable part of a support team. You may also be encouraged to become involved in spiritual or religious activities with other individuals who do not drink alcohol or use drugs to have more people on your support team.

Keep Adding People to Your Support Team
Your support system while in recovery at a rehabilitation facility as well as after leaving care is important to help you as needed. It is possible for the people on your support team to change because you may move to a new location or make a lifestyle change. In many cases, the individuals you meet at your first Alcoholics Anonymous meetings become lifelong friends and support team members.