One of the toughest things to endure in recovery is to have to deal with the relapse of a friend. While it is not ideal to have to see anyone go out, having a friend relapse can shake you to the core. You may be questioning what this means for you and for your friendship because this may be a new experience for you entirely.
First, you must know that the relapse is not your fault and there is probably nothing more you could have done to help prevent it. Even if they may have called you and you were not available for their call, they did what they did for reasons beyond your control. Most people do not just “slip”. The disease of addiction is always lurking to get someone in a weak moment to drink or use again.
Rule number one is that you do not want to be around your friend while they are drinking or using. In the same sense that two people go out for a 12-Step call to protect each other from any temptations, being alone with your friend when they are intoxicated with booze or drugs around may give you cravings and triggers that could overtake you. Protecting your sobriety is important and making good decisions for yourself will be instrumental in keeping you sober.
Even though you should not be around them when they are under the influence, you can certainly offer to take them to a meeting, so they can jump right back into solution. They may tell you that they are embarrassed to identify as a newcomer. You should convince them that relapse is not a sign of weakness but rather a sign of strength to come back into the rooms to regain momentum in their recovery.
What you should definitely do is take care of your recovery to the best of your ability so that you can remain sober and be a good example for your friend and for others that may look to you for solution on what you do to stay sober. Relapse may be a part of recovery for your friend’s recovery, but it does not have to be for you too. Continue to take your recovery one day at a time, stay into action, and be of service to others so that you have a better chance to stay around.
Serenity Oaks Wellness Center is a 5-week extensive treatment program that can help you to stay sober while assisting you in relapse prevention. Our 12-Step aspects and holistic therapy combined can show you how to adorn your soul in recovery.
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