One of the first requirements of being in recovery is being yourself. Being the opposite of who we really are is often one of the actions that leads us to substance abuse. Speaking proudly of the process and achievements you have made to get you to where you are is important. Always remember that getting sober was the best decision that you could have made for improving your life.
Don’t think your story should be kept to yourself for fear of others not wanting to accept you as you are. Some people aren’t ready to deal with some of their own truths; therefore, they might feel bothered by your story. The process of healing from addiction is through authenticity. There can be proven benefits of sharing with others about the fact that you are in recovery. The National Institute of Health states:
While in many cases, peer support groups do not replace the need for formal treatments or supervisory clinical guidance due to peers not having sufficient training to manage psychiatric conditions or high-risk situations, they still offer an augmentation to treatment that provides many benefits to individuals with substance use disorders. (NIH)
Letting others know you’re in recovery immediately sets healthy boundaries because they know not to ask you to drink with them or partake in any similar activities that could lead to a relapse.
Does Everyone Need to Know that You’re in Recovery?
You don’t have a responsibility to share with anyone the fact that you’re recovery. Only you have the right to decide who gets to know about your story. Shielding yourself with silence is an adequate response when someone is not able to process your story. If you’re perceiving bad intentions from a person, this could place your state of mind in the wrong place.
Be watchful of your peace. It is not your job to force anyone to comprehend you or anything you have gone through. This is your recovery, your story, your life and you are not required to share the specifics with anyone.
Are You Ready for the Questions?
While there are many people that know what to ask and what not to ask, the majority of the people you encounter will not know. There are going to be family members, close friends, and even strangers constantly asking “rude” questions about your story. They may ask if your recovery is forever, why you had to make this choice, or how bad things got for you. This can all be a little overwhelming at first.
Once you come to the realization that recovery is fun, you’ll know what an enjoyable life looks like for you. You’re going to learn exactly what message you want to deliver and how to deliver that message when questions come along, and they always will. You will find that your recovery will become infectious as others find out you have something they might not.
When Do You Let Others Know That You’re in Recovery?
Most of the time, you will have the perfect response, but there will be days throughout your journey where a response won’t be needed. Make sure you are in tune with your state of mind and make sure you are at peace before deciding if it’s a good day to be sharing something so personal to you. It won’t be about the person listening it will shift to being about you being in the right space within yourself to share.
The way you are feeling and the way you share what you’re feeling is going to constantly be shifting. The right time is always within you and your level of inner peace will help you decide. Sharing your story is not always about saving or rescuing anyone. Do not push your recovery or story on anyone especially if they aren’t ready to hear it.
Recreate Life Counseling Addiction Treatment
Here at Recreate Life Counseling, we offer group therapy, individual therapy, cognitive behavioral therapy, relapse prevention therapy, 12 step addiction treatment, trauma therapy, gender-specific groups, and holistic therapy. Having the professional input of our medical professionals will facilitate the process of learning how to step into sharing your story.
The group type therapies will allow you to get current input form peers who are currently learning to navigate how to share with their loved ones and strangers. Begin recreating your life today by calling us.