Everyone craves friendship and human connection. We want people to lean on, people to lift us up, and people to laugh with. This craving for social connection can have a very strong effect on people for better or for the worse. Choosing your social circle after addiction recovery can be the most crucial decision in your full recovery from addiction. The people you surround yourself with can determine your outlook, your values, and even your mood. If you want to stay sober and give clean living a serious chance, you need to surround yourself with the right people. If you spend time with the wrong crowd after addiction recovery, you are much more susceptible to relapsing into drug use.
Stay Away from Your Old Group of Substance Abusers
There are all kinds of reasons why people fall into substance abuse. These range from social anxiety to traumatic experiences to boredom. But people do not fall into drug and alcohol abuse alone. You smoke, shoot up, and drink with other people. Even if you primarily do these things by yourself, you still have people who sell to you or encourage and indulge you in your behavior. This group may not want you to better yourself through addiction recovery. Oftentimes, these groups feel very tight-knit. Everyone sees things on the same wavelength and builds values based on using drugs. If you step back into this group after attending an addiction recovery program, you will find it difficult to resist the norms and logic of the group because all their values revolve around accepting and masking the harm of their substance abuse.
Form a New, Positive and Sober Social Group
You will need emotional support during your addiction recovery, and you will get it from either your old group of drug users or a new group of sober friends. Sometimes you may think it is easier to get along with old friends with abuse problems because you feel like they understand the life you had before. New, sober friends, however, can help you explore your emotions in a healthy way without abusing drugs. A sober social group may challenge you in new ways, but they will also help you stay away from drug use. It’s important to not let loneliness or stress eat away at you in the earliest days of drug and alcohol recovery. This stress can cause you to fall back into drug use for comfort.