Completing drug treatment is an important milestone that many addicts can hang their hats on and feel a tremendous amount of pride. As the days count down before they leave treatment and resume their daily lives, many addicts may feel a great deal of stress and worry. While the addict has changed while in drug treatment, the people and places that were familiar during their addiction haven’t changed. The thought of dealing with the temptations and urges of daily life while maintaining their new found recovery can feel overwhelming.
The fact is that recovery doesn’t end when you walk out of the treatment…in fact, the real work is just beginning. If you are newly out of treatment, you need both support and structure to help make your transition back into your normal life much less stressful. Fortunately, many treatment facilities offer excellent aftercare options to aid in that transition, and sober living homes are an excellent tool in your ongoing recovery plan.
What are Sober Living Homes?
If you aren’t familiar of how sober living homes help in the recovery process, sober living homes provide transitional housing for those who have completed intensive inpatient treatment and will be resuming their normal lives. Also known as halfway homes, the concept first originated on the West Coast and these homes provide newly recovering addicts the freedom to go work, keep family commitments, or go to school while being surrounded with the support and encouragement of fellow residents who are also in recovery.
In general, people that choose to live in sober houses are able to can stay as long as needed and will usually pay resident fees as a form of rent. While most sober living houses are privately owned and will bill directly for services, there are some facilities that do accept insurance payments or even Medicaid.
How Do Sober Living Homes Aid In Recovery?
Sober living homes are more than just places where newly recovering addicts can lay there heads down at night. These sober living environments provide addict the structure they need to move towards independence. There is less supervision by treatment staff in a sober house when compared to intensive inpatient treatment,but those who staff these living facilities are have significant recovery time and may be employed by the health care facility or private organization that runs them.
In addition to recovering staff, those who reside in these homes are in various stages of recovery and as a result there is regular peer interaction and support which can help everyone’s recovery. Additionally, residents also hold each other accountable for their actions and through regular house meetings any and all who reside in these types of facilities are held accountable.
Many sober living homes have strict no tolerance policies regarding drug use by residents inside or outside the halfway houses. If a resident is caught using and violates this policy, in most cases they are evicted and are not allowed to return. Additionally, if you live in a halfway house you are strongly encouraged to avoid friends and family that are still active drug users.
Residents who live in halfway houses are usually required or strongly encouraged to attend AA, NA or other 12-step meetings and be active in working a recovery program that was created for them while in treatment. In some instances there are 12-step meetings that are available to residents at the halfway house itself.
What Can I Expect When I Live In A Sober Living Home?
If you enter a sober living facility and expect to sit in your room and wait out your time, you are in for a surprise. When you commit to sober living, you will be expected to be actively working your recovery plan and working towards independent living. It may take some time and some adjustments before you have a clear plan, you will not be able to sit on your laurels.
With encouragement and support from both your peers and staff, you are expected to do the following:
Follow House Rules
Every sober living environment has a set of common house rules that need to be followed. For example, you are expected to help keep common areas clean and complete assigned chores such as removing trash,making dinner, and attending weekly house meetings. While you do have more independence living in a halfway house, you are expected to sign in and sign out when leaving or returning to the house.
As stated earlier, most sober living houses have strict no-tolerance rules in place when it comes to drug use in or off house grounds. Those who are caught using are often evicted from the home and not allowed to return for safety and security reasons.
Organize Employment Searches
Looking for employment will be easier for a person in recovery knowing that a support system is in place. You will have time scheduled during the day for individuals to search for employment, including interviews and pre-employment drug screenings.
Have Time to Adjust to Sobriety
Sober living programs will have specific house rules and guidelines to follow, but these rules always have an emphasis on the eventual transition back to independence. This greater independence allows you time to start living a relatively normal life and will help make your transition back home easier.
In addition to the time spent going to work or looking for gainful employment, you will also have time allocated during the day to look for suitable housing if you need. Time spent in a halfway house can be put to an apartment search with lots of feedback from other residents and the staff regarding what to look out for.
Arguably the most important step in the recovery process is to make amends to those family and friends who were affected or harmed by your actions. The support one finds in the community of fellow addicts in a sober living house will help guide the resident through the process of rebuilding relationships.
Looking for a Sober Living House? Let Sober Nation Help You in Your Search
Finding the best halfway house or other sober living home that fits your unique needs can be a challenge without the proper guidance, information and support. As a leading provider of addiction treatment and recovery resources on the web, Sober Nation can provide you and your family the comprehensive resources, innovative search tools and expert guidance and support to make your search for a halfway house easy and worry-free. Contact Sober Nation today at 1-866-207-7436.