When you’re open to receiving help with addiction, you’ve taken a huge, empowering first step. You’ve stepped into a role of humility, of laying down your pride and admitting that you need help with something bigger than yourself.
As you walk through the addiction recovery program, it’s easy to find people to encourage you along the way. Staff members, medical doctors, professional counselors, fellow recovering addicts — they’re all cheering you on, wanting you to succeed. You recognize their love, support, and desire to see you integrate successfully.
Meanwhile, once you’ve finished your recovery program and it’s time to get back into your normal routine, it’s natural to be wary of who’s really on your team. It’s not always easy to trust people when you’re just learning to trust yourself and your ability to get back on the right track.
However, there are three types of friends you might not expect during recovery who can serve as a key element in your healing process:
#1. The pre-addiction pal
Most of us remember our little group of childhood friends, the ones we stuck with through middle school and high school. Often, different personalities within the group earned certain titles. There was always the “Mom” or “Dad” of the group who was typically the more level-headed one, as well as the fun-loving, rambunctious one, the shy one, and the nerdy one. Different characteristics, but one perfect blend that balanced the crew out.
These friendships were typically inseparable until graduation came along. Some move off to college, while others stay at home. Some branch out and meet new friends, while others hang on to what’s left. Things start to feel a little more awkward as time gently forces you to move on. Who’s to say that time should sever friendships, though?
As you reintegrate after addiction recovery, it might not hurt to remember those friends who were with you since day one — the ones who remember you at your youngest, most fun, and most innocent. If those people loved you enough to stick with you through hormones, acne, and car wrecks, they might be people who could serve as solid support to remind you of who you always have been and who you still are today.
#2. The protector
“The protector” sounds super tough and cool, but in all honesty, your protector is typically your mom or dad. They’re the ones who fought for you as a baby when you couldn’t really take care of yourself. The ones who were there to put gas in your car before you could afford it. The ones who were there to say, “Look, I did ____________, and it didn’t work out. Let me offer you some advice here.”
Once you’ve been through the hardships of addiction, it’s hard to look loved ones in the face, recognizing the potential hurt you’ve caused. That’s normal, but shame should not dictate your relationships forever. It doesn’t deserve that grip on your life and your family’s lives.
Sure, not all of us have moms or dads we can look up to, or even reach out to, but most of us can recall a role model, influence, or other adults we always trusted to look out for us. While we don’t want to hurt anyone anymore, our absence in their lives could be the biggest wound — and it’s a wound that we could actively fix.
#3. The pastor
This can be a really awkward one — the pastor. This is the person who spent all of their time telling us what not to do, which roads not to go down, and where most of us would end up if we rebelled. Facing a pastor post-addiction is that painful blow to the pride that says, “Yeah… you were right.”
To admit that the pastor was right is to admit that you were wrong, and that’s never fun. Most people don’t prefer to tap into humility on such a level, but if you want overall healing of mind, body, and spirit, there’s some pride you have to put to rest. Not only do you have to lay down your pride, but you have to reach out and thank those who were there giving their best efforts to keep you safe and healthy.
These people, the ones who constantly looked out for you, are the ones who will be there on the flipside to continue cheering you on and guiding you in the ride direction as you continue the addiction recovery process. So as awkward as it may seem, your pastor might just be the best go-to you’ve got.
It’s crucial to find community once your recovery classes are over and it’s time to reintegrate, and while it might be hard facing the people you love the most, perhaps they are your best champions along the way. Of course, you always have to recognize who has your best interest in mind, and unfortunately, that’s not everyone. Remember who you could always count on, and don’t be afraid to give their trust a second try.
Without the right people to talk to, especially as you complete your addiction recovery courses and reintegrate into the community, it’s easy for anxiety, panic, and relapse temptations to set in. However, here at Renaissance Ranch, we can help find the right people you can trust to be your cheerleaders, champions, and biggest supporters. It’s not always easy to know who you can trust, but you can count on your Renaissance Ranch family and know that we have your best interest in mind, even after you complete our program. Our staff is here to offer advice and guidance as you search for the best people and resources to stay safe through the addiction recovery process. If you are struggling with finding a healthy person to talk to, we’ve got you covered. The Renaissance Ranch team is here to assist you through all aspects of the drug addiction recovery process, so please call us now at (801) 308-8898.