Recovering from a drug or alcohol addiction can be physically taxing, but the psychological effects of leaving drugs and alcohol behind can be even more difficult for a recovering addict. Establishing healthy relationships with friends and family members can help you battle these psychological effects, but rebuilding damaged relationships takes time.
Here are two things you can do to help bridge the gap between you and your loved ones during recovery.
1. Strive to establish open and frequent communication.
Overcoming years of secrecy and manipulation can be difficult for your loved ones, and you may find that trust must be earned as you attempt to rebuild the relationships damaged by drug or alcohol addiction. Striving to establish open and frequent communication will help you regain trust once again.
Loved ones often worry about your progress, and with statistics showing that between 50% and 90% of addicts will experience a relapse during recovery, it can be easy for your loved ones to assume the worst when they don't hear from you.
Be open about everything you are feeling. Share your triumphs and your challenges, and don't let communication with your loved ones slip through the cracks as you begin balancing the responsibilities of sober living. Being open and frequent with your communication will help repair damaged relationships with your loved ones.
2. Make sure that you have realistic expectations.
Completing addiction counseling takes a tremendous amount of courage and dedication, and you may expect your loved ones to greet you like a hero as you begin the recovery process. Having unrealistic expectations once you enter recovery can be a contributing factor when it comes to relapse, so be sure that you don't set your expectations too high.
As you begin to interact with loved ones, it's important to recognize that they have been hurt by your addiction too. Increased levels of stress and extreme emotional pain are not uncommon for the loved ones of an addict. Recognizing that your loved ones need to work through their own recovery process at their own pace will help you begin to establish meaningful relationships once again.
Keep your expectations in check, and don't put any pressure on your loved ones to move faster than they are ready to when it comes reconnecting after your enter recovery.
Healthy relationships play an important role in helping recovering addicts battle the urge to use drugs or alcohol. By maintaining open and frequent communication and not holding your loved ones to your high expectations, you will be able to begin rebuilding the trust you need to repair damaged relationships as you continue the recovery process.
For further assistance, contact a local rehab center, such as Olalla Recovery Centers.