When it gets to the stage of building strong positive relationships while you are in recovery, the whole process is very important – particularly when you are getting out of rehab and transitioning into society. When you are recovering and even afterwards, it is very important that you have a strong support system; people who can encourage you when the going gets tough, and can uplift you when you are going through a tough withdrawal phase.
Their support is the only factor that will stand between you and relapsing, but the problem is mainly the lack of intuition when you attempt to build these relationships. This is not your fault though – when you have sent a long time within the haze of addiction, it is challenging to find yourself and your footing again, even though it is possible.
In fact, the lack of knowledge on the issue can cause you to exhibit some behaviors that alienate the people who are trying to assist you to recover. Here are some of them.
Attempting to fix others
While it is a normal aspect of recovery to open up about issues that you are facing in your journey to sobriety, it is a bad thing if you do not offer a listening ear before anything else. Sometimes giving solutions is good, but only if the person has asked for advice on what to do – otherwise, they are mostly interested in just talking about what they are going through.
When you constantly tell someone how they should live their lives in recovery, they can feel worse and end up shutting you out when they fail to follow through your suggestions.
Judging others because of their choices
It is good to be discerning in your relationships, even those in recovery. However, judging others because of how they dress, how they look, or how they view issues of life – including comments they may have made in a meeting – fails to be effective when you are trying to build relationships with them.
Failing to forgive others
Perhaps you may have run into friction with one of your fellow recovering addicts, or they may have done something that angered you. While it is a healthy option to give yourself some space until you calm down, it is also wrong to hold onto anger and fail to forgive them.
Getting angry is normal, but holding onto that anger is not, and it will only interfere with the recovery process. It will also stop you from building possibly worthwhile relationships with others in rehab, even if they may have made honest mistakes, while your ability to stay focused on the positive aspects of your journey will be impaired – therefore interfering with your journey to becoming sober.
Being overly dramatic
Going through up and downs is a normal part of everyday life, and everyone goes through these phases. While it is a good thing to talk about the things and emotions that are affecting you in various ways, it is also a bad thing to be melodramatic about the things you are going through.
Your support system is a place where you can open up and talk about your feelings and other aspects of your life, but they can also turn away from you if it is only drama that is associated with you.
Lying about yourself
Honesty is a big part of the recovery process, and honesty goes a long way towards connecting with others. In order for you to begin the recovery process, it is important that you are honest with yourself and admit you have a problem, and it is also important to open up to your therapist at the recovery village.com about the changes that the recovery process is doing in you. It is also important that you are honest with your friends, especially your support group.
When you overstate your experience and exaggerate your accomplishments in front of others, you only make yourself look like an egotistical person – and that is guaranteed to drive people away. That also means you say things you did not, you want to make yourself look like you have overcome more than others have, or just being dishonest on a general level; all these things will make people distrust what you say.
The recovery community is not any different from other institutions like schools, because people are still themselves no matter where they are. The community also has stories circulating about various people; including stories of who is sleeping with who, who has relapsed, who is lying about any issue, who is at risk of relapse, and so on.
It might seem harmless to engage in such stories, but when you entangle yourself in such stories, you are always bound to hurt someone regardless of whether the story is true or not. The best approach would be to mind your own business, and stay out of it as much as possible, instead of involving yourself in other people’s business.
Using others to accomplish an agenda
There are few feelings that are as hurtful as finding out someone used you to accomplish their own agenda or goals. Taking the things you could get from anyone to fuel your addiction regardless of whether they were willing or not might have been your life as an addict, but recovery forces you to adopt an attitude of give-and-take.
It is good to ask for help when you are struggling with something, but do not take advantage of them either – make sure to offer your help when they ask for it, or when they need your support on something.
Guessing the goals of other people
Regardless of whether you think another person’s goals are interesting or not, you should be supportive of the choices they make. Judging someone for their mistakes or decisions will not help you gain friends – it will only turn them away from you.
The road to recovery is made better by having a support system along the way. However, there are things you might do that risk you not forming support networks in recovery, so it is important to stay mindful of others and respect their choices.