Camaraderie at the bar or in the club is a peculiar breed of social networking. Under the influence of drugs and alcohol, inhibitions are down, pleasure chemicals are flowing and everyone is a new best friend. Plans are made, promises are sworn, phone numbers are exchanged, and in the morning-everything might be forgotten. Bonding over drugs and alcohol is not the only way to make friends and meet new people. In the beginning it might seem as though recovery couldn’t possibly lead to friendships. However, you’ll be replacing the bar and the club with recovery meetings and support groups where plenty of great people, just like you, are working for their recovery every day. You might even end up in some familiar environments, this time clean and sober with a group of like minded people.
Who Do You Want To Be Friendships?
It isn’t uncommon for people living with substance use disorders and any co-occurring mental health disorders to fall into toxic friendships which exit in a vacuum of a toxic environment. Likely, you’ve had dreams and fantasies about the kinds of people you would want to be friends with, the things you would talk about, and the activities you would do together. Creating a list won’t get you the perfect friend. However, the more you define the kind of people you want to invite into your new life of recovery the great clarity your intentions will have. Meeting new friends in recovery doesn’t mean that you have to end old friendships. You’re just building new relationships which support your new lifestyle.
Be That Awkward Person
“Hi, want to be friends?” is not as awkward as you think in recovery. Everyone is learning how to live life differently and start over. When you go to recovery support meetings listen for stories that inspire you or people who you might immediately catch good energy from. Ask for their phone number and if they would like to get together some time. You might be surprised to find out they wanted to ask you the same thing. Early recovery, and many stages of recovery, can feel awkward at times. Embrace the strange and create an amazing new friendship. Your first bonding moment can be over how awkward it feels to try to make new friends.
Growing a community of like-minded peers is one of the many gifts of recovery. Healing mind, body, and spirit will bring you a new life. Avalon By The Sea offers primary residential treatment for substance use and co-occurring mental health disorders. For a confidential assessment and more information on our programs, call us today at 888-958-7511.