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Preventing Social Isolation and Addiction Relapse – Part 1

Why Isolation and Addiction Go Hand-in-Hand

Loneliness is one of the most common relapse triggers for those recovering from addiction. When drugs, alcohol and other vices were constantly supplying you with instant gratification, important relationships were likely damaged or destroyed. And, now that you’re in recovery from your addiction, you’ve hopefully cut ties with the unhealthy friendships that used to provide you with some form of social interaction, however harmful it might have been. For these reasons, it’s normal to find yourself feeling more and more socially isolated.
But, rebuilding healthy relationships and establishing new ones is possible! In this article, we’ll offer our suggestions for preventing isolation and relapse.

Isolation and Addiction

5 Tips for Avoiding Isolation and Relapse

1. Grieve the Loss of Your Addiction

Your addiction was an important part of your life. It may have felt like your best friend at times. Now that you are taking steps to leave it behind, you will need to grieve that loss. Recognize those feelings and process them so you can truly move forward. Otherwise, your ability to be open and honest with people in newer, healthier relationships may be compromised.

2. Avoid Isolation by Joining a Support Group

Guilt, shame, embarrassment or simply feelings of being different from others may cause you to withdraw from social interaction at first. Joining a support group gives you access to people who understand those feelings and can provide insight on how they have overcome similar obstacles. Sometimes, hearing someone else verbalize a problem you haven’t been able to put into words yourself can help you gain a better perspective on your own issues. As you share each others’ struggles and triumphs, you can develop bonds
that strengthen your resolve and theirs.

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