Returning Home Safely after Substance Abuse Treatment



Not everyone is able to reside in a sober living facility after treatment, whether due to family obligations or financial limitations. Those who will be returning home following completion of inpatient treatment should take certain steps to ensure a healthy transition back into this environment, as there are likely still strong associations with substance abuse which will need to be eliminated. How can you best return to your home while remaining safe and secure in your recovery?


The greatest concern when it comes to an addict successfully returning home sober is any paraphernalia or substances which may remain on the property. It is important you be honest with yourself and your sober supports about any secret stash which may still be at your home so it may be disposed of prior to your arrival. If it is not feasible for a family member or sober support to clear out any remaining substances in your home prior to your return, you should absolutely not enter your home without a person with at least a year of continuous sobriety by your side. This is to ensure you do not succumb to temptation and relapse on your remaining stash, but successfully preventing this outcome requires rigorous honesty on your part.


Once you’ve taken steps to eliminate any remaining intoxicants in your home, you should strive to create a completely new and revamped routine for your daily life. Your old schedule and routine will have strong associations with your substance abuse, so returning to this pattern of behavior could foster a relapse mentality in your mind, inhibiting your growth in recovery and ultimately leading to the loss of your sobriety. A common refrain in the rooms of recovery is that when we get sober, the only thing we must change is everything. While it was not feasible for you to change your living situation and reside in a sober home during your early recovery, it is well within your means to dramatically alter your schedule and routine in order to form new thought and behavior patterns which will be associated with sobriety.


Returning home upon successful completion of an inpatient addiction treatment program can be nerve-wracking, as this is an environment in which our daily substance abuse occurred for months, if not years. However, there are proactive measures you can take in order to mitigate the triggering nature of your home so that you can form new associations and gain a restored sense of peace and serenity in what was once a beloved environment. So long as you maintain rigorous honesty with those around you, especially when it comes to any secret stash lingering at your home, you can confidently return to your residence upon completing substance abuse treatment and begin building your new life in recovery!


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