Behavioral Signs of a Relapse

Behavioral Signs of a Relapse

Behavioral Signs of a Relapse

Anyone who has any sobriety before they relapsed can tell you that the relapse starts long before you ever pick up a drug or a drink. It is a slow process that begins long before you drink or use. The steps to a relapse are changes in attitudes, feelings, and behaviors that gradually lead to the final step: picking up a drink or drug. Here are some behavioral signs of a relapse:

Behavioral Signs of a Relapse: You stop going to meetings and helping others

When you are headed towards a relapse, one of the first things to go is 12-step meetings. You start to make excuses as to why you cannot go. You may say you do not like the fact that everyone talks about their past substance abuse too much or that you’re just “too busy” to get to meetings. Since you aren’t going to meetings, you also stop reaching your hand out to the newcomer and offering help. This is dangerous, because we only keep what we have by giving it away. Ask yourself every night how many people you have helped today. If the answer is zero, than that’s what your recovery is worth.

Behavioral Signs of a Relapse: You stop praying and meditating

Besides meetings, prayer and meditation is one of the easiest things to start slacking on. For some people, the prayer and meditation goes first. Expanding spiritual consciousness is done on the honor system, in the privacy of your own home, so it’s easy to stop without anyone noticing. Once you stop doing that though, you may notice that…

Behavioral Signs of a Relapse: You begin to act the way you did when you were using

This is also known as a “dry drunk.” You may begin to be irritated by little things. You start to take things personally. You become resentful easily, and you don’t do anything to change the way you are feeling. You feel restless, irritable, and discontent. During this time, you may start lying, cheating, or stealing. This kind of behavior starts small-like making an excuse as to why you were late for work, and then the lies start becoming bigger. You may start acting out in other ways or using sex, shopping, gambling, or food as a way to make yourself feel better.  You stop living by spiritual principals, and if anyone points it out to you…

Behavioral Signs of a Relapse: You get defensive

The feelings will be familiar. It’s the same feeling you had when you were encouraged to get sober and wanted everyone to mind their own business. It’s denial and self-righteousness. Instead of listening to what people have to say, you get defensive and start picking out what is wrong with them and everyone else. You make yourself feel better by focusing on other people’s flaws.

Not everyone’s relapse happens in the exact same way, but if you notice any of these behavioral signs of a relapse in yourself, it’s time to take action and make a change. There is always a way back from this path to a relapse. The important thing is to recognize it’s happening and be honest about your attitudes and behaviors.

If you need help with your addiction please call us at 800-507-7389.

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