The Need To Be Sober In Real Life

Sober In Real Life
February 27, 2019 7:25 pm By In: ,


I founded Catalyst Recovery because addiction treatment, especially residential treatment, isn’t built for real life. Let’s get down to basics. Recovery is much like cell service… It needs to work where and when we need it most: home, office, emergency situations, out & about, elevators (kidding) etc.

Before we get to the point of this piece, it should be understood that there isn’t a blueprint for getting sober. If there was, we would direct every single individual with any substance abuse issues to do a quick online search and follow the clear-cut directions that spell out guaranteed success. But alas, we’re all unique individual snowflakes. No two alike. And therein lies the challenge and frustration with helping those who are or may be afflicted. Different approaches work for different people.

So, first, we need to determine if recovery is even necessary. I mean, how do we qualify a “problem” within a person that drinks or partakes in some occasional drug use? I think it starts with identifying what a good life looks like, regardless of alcohol and drugs. The whole point of life, to me, is good health, love, experience, presence and one could hope for some happiness as well. So, then the task of figuring out if an individual has a problem becomes very simple. Can an individual remain happy and healthy while drinking or using various prescription medications or illicit drugs? If the answer is: Yes.  I don’t think there’s any problem and that person should go read something else. But if the answer is: No. The question for anyone acknowledging they have a problem is: What can I do?

Now comes the part where we talk about options for those who have identified alcohol/drugs as a problem. Most individuals attempt to solve the problem on their own. i.e. moderation, having a loved one monitor drinking/using, quitting cold turkey, etc. These methods often come up short, but do not deter the individual from trying them again and again. These days there are more levels of care than ever before. Detox, Residential Treatment (rehab), Sober Living (halfway house or transitional living), IOP, OP, PHP, etc. Each of these levels of care can work!

Each level of care works while the person is actively involved in that care. Some restrictions may apply once said level of care is completed. Also, there are no guarantees that said level of care will work even while you’re there (contradictory, I know). You may also maintain recovery long past said level of care, but chances are slim.

The whole point of treatment is to give an individual a foundation of sustained abstinence that can hopefully be applied to the “real world” upon departure. This is obviously where rubber meets the road and most people falter. Implementing the tools learned in treatment in a real-world setting is sometimes rather challenging. Especially after only a short stint (30/60/90 days) away from alcohol and drugs.

No offense to traditional residential treatment, but it’s really easy to stay sober in that type of environment. There’s no booze or drugs, there’s a great staff, individual/group therapy, no family/spouse, no career, no major pressure or stressors, etc. A rehab setting is nothing like home or the office and subsequently easy to stay the course while there.

So, now just to connect the dots, someone needs to learn how to be sober where it matters most: IN REAL LIFE. They need to know that whether they’ve gone to a facility or not, they can ensure their success. I urge you to check out our website and investigate what we offer. Finally, you don’t need to disappear to receive exceptional care. Your life can continue as is and we can help you integrate recovery wherever you happen to be!

Contact Catalyst Recovery today to Learn More