Do halfway houses increase your chances of staying sober?

Do halfway houses increase your chances of staying sober?

Halfway houses are another avenue to increase the success rate of staying sober. Halfway houses are just another step towards freedom while allowing some stability and safety while addicts and alcoholics get back on their feet. The halfway house success rate is much higher than the rates of place that only are inpatient or outpatient treatment. If you talk to anyone with long term sobriety chances are they went to a halfway house after they went to treatment and this makes the halfway house success rate very high.

A halfway house is a bit like a practice run at real life sobriety. The lessons of drug rehab can be practiced from within a safe and sober environment before the recovering addict returns completely to the environment of temptation, and free access to drugs or alcohol. This is one of the biggest factors that contribute to the success rate of a halfway house. The fact that many addicts and alcoholics get to experience life issues while in a safe environment.

Living with fellow recovering addicts allows for fellowship, and through a shared experience, halfway house friendships are common this is another important factor in the success rate of halfway houses. Because most newly sober men and women struggle initially with recreation time and need to relearn how to enjoy life without intoxication, it can be very beneficial to maintain the support of others with a similar situation for strength against a return to substance abuse.

Clinical studies also show that the long term sobriety rates of those people that continue drug treatment in a halfway house are far better, and that aftercare participation rates remain significantly higher for those people residing in a halfway house. This also adds to the success rate of halfway houses. Some halfway houses will go so far as to mandate continuing and full participation in drug treatment aftercare as a requirement of residency, and failure to attend meetings can result in eviction from the house and program.

Although most halfway houses impose mandatory employment as a condition of residency, some also offer work training and work release programs, allowing the recovering addict to develop their employable skills in a safe and sober environment. Other educations programs are also offered. This helps an addict get a good head start on life while which can also increase the success rate of halfway houses.

Essentially, a halfway house keeps addicts motivated to sobriety; and growing together, recovering addicts learn how to fill their time without substance abuse. Recovering addicts better social interaction skills with others in a like situation, they gain valuable employment and life skills, and they are much more likely to remain active in aftercare drug treatment programming. The lessons of rehab are many, and it can be difficult to consolidate all that needs to be learned and put into practice when released into extreme temptation and little support. Through gradually increasing exposure to temptations and challenge, the continuing drug treatment at a halfway house increases the probability of success.

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

How to Start a Halfway House

How to Start a Halfway House

 

What is a Halfway House?

Halfway Houses are transitional living places for those in recovery from drugs or alcohol. They are also called sober houses. Some people go to halfway houses from a treatment center, prison, or a homeless situation, while others go there to be in a sober and clean environment to begin the recovery process. Some residents are in halfway houses due to court orders.

Aspects of a Halfway House

Many halfway houses are run by people who themselves were at one time a halfway house resident. The houses accommodate either men or women. Most halfway houses require residents to pass breathalyzer and drug screening tests. Some houses have curfews.

Make sure the house is located so that your residents can easily get to AA and NA meetings. In recovery, we are self-supporting. Be certain that you are clear on what is expected from you and what you expect from your residents. Assign cleaning chores, including making their beds and keeping their rooms tidy.

Choose a house near public transportation for those of your residents who do not have their own transportation.

Why You Should Start a Halfway House

You should only open a halfway house if you are passionate about the cause. And, if you are passionate, it can be done with little or no money. There are various grants and loans available to get a house started. Learn from experience and check with someone who already has a house to see how to open one.

How to Start a Halfway House

Step 1: Acquire the licenses and permits needed to operate a halfway house in the community you select.

Step 2: Purchase or lease a property. Your financial circumstances may dictate this choice, but county, city, township and other lawmaking agencies frequently require property ownership before they are willing to sanction a halfway house in a residential neighborhood. Once you find one or more likely properties, have your top choices inspected by a certified building inspector to avoid “buyer’s remorse.”

Step 3: Renovate the property. Unless the home you buy was operated as a halfway house in the past, you’ll likely have to modify it to accommodate zoning laws that sanction the number of people you can house there, or any personal limits you’ve placed on resident capacity. Purchase insurance to cover the house and its contents, and add liability coverage to protect your personal assets from lawsuits. A regular homeowner’s policy isn’t adequate for a group home.

Step 4: Hire staff and create policies, rules and regulations. Having staff in place before the first resident arrives is a huge advantage, because experienced halfway house employees can help you write an operations manual and set rules, regulations and policies that will guide both clients and staff. Make sure you run background checks on everyone, from counselors to housekeeping employees.

Step 5: Set up the accounting aspects of your halfway house so it operates smoothly well into the future. Accurate records are important if you want your sponsors to continue making financial contributions, and it goes without saying that finding additional sponsors will be an ongoing activity.

Step 6: Implement programming. Residents released from rehab programs require an inordinate amount of structure in their lives so they can learn to become responsible members of both the halfway house and the outside world. Establish tight schedules that include mandated housekeeping chores, group counseling sessions, one-on-one therapy time, recreational activities, job searching and life skill building time. Plan social events, meetings and include alone time.

Remember: It is unlawful to discriminate in housing. The Supreme Court has ruled that recovering alcoholics and drug addicts are a protected class under the handicapped provisions of the Federal Fair Housing Act Amendments of 1988. If you seek a house in a good neighborhood, you’ll find it.

 

 

Sources:

http://www.sba.gov

http://halfwayhouse.com

http://smallbusiness.chron.com

http://soberhouse.net

 

 

 

 

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

Half way house

Half way house

Half way houses essentially are transitional living spaces for anyone who is in recovery from drugs and alcohol. You may also know half way houses as sober living or sober living houses, this is because in some states it is legally required that those terms be used. The people who go to half way houses usually go after they have been in drug treatment, prison, or have been homeless. Other people go to half way houses merely because they want to be in a sober environment to begin their recovery. There also some people who are court ordered to half way houses.

Half way houses can be private homes, apartments, or facilities specially built to provide support services to residents. Half way houses are not usually run down or scary. Depending on the location and type of half way house, they are fairly nice. Half way houses are usually decorated, come with all the furniture, amenities, kitchens, bathrooms, bedrooms that can hold one or two residents, pools, backyards and more. The half way house is not only a place for people to get sober but also a place for having fun sober and socializing.

For instance, in a half way house there are rules dealing with curfew, how many meetings a resident has to attend, whether or not a resident has to have a sponsor and during what times they can be in the house. Most half way houses are trying to help you get sober and also get your life back on track. So some half way houses have rules that say you must be out looking for a job, volunteering or working-if you aren’t doing those things than you can’t stay there. When it comes to curfew at a half way house it usually starts out fairly early and after a resident has been there for a while and successfully followed the rules, gets later. There are also chores that must be done daily and punishments for not doing them. The whole point of a half way house is to teach accountability, responsibility and sobriety. The strictness of the rules at a half way house varies from house to house.

More often than not half way houses require their future residents to pass a breathalyzer and a drug test. This is because if you were to have substances in your body, you may need the help of a medical facility for detox. The withdrawal symptoms from drugs can be very painful and sometimes fatal so it is best if future residents can’t pass a drug test or breathalyzer to go to a medical detox.     

Half way houses are quite frequently run by people who are also in recovery and were in a half way house at one point in their life. Half way houses usually are separated by gender. This means that most half way houses are either for only women or only men. The person who runs the half way house determines this. The person who runs the halfway house also determines some of the half way house rules.

A half way house merely is a residential place for those who need a safe place to transition back into the world again and to do it sober.

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

What is a Three-Quarter House?

 Three Quarterway House

A Three-Quarter House is a sober-living house or community. In order to understand what a Three-Quarter House is, you must first understand what a Halfway House is.

What is a Halfway House?

A halfway house is a communal living space for recovering alcoholics and addicts who want to transition back to independent living after having completed inpatient treatment or for those who have committed to a sober lifestyle without having undergone treatment.  A three-quarter house is much like this; it is another level of transition before going back out into the world.

After living for some time, usually 3 to 6 months, at a halfway house, many recovering alcoholics and addicts opt to move into a three-quarter house before getting their own apartment or before returning to their living situations prior to getting clean and sober, including returning to their families and  normal home life. For those with families, even those that include children, living in three-quarters houses is beneficial as an added level of support to the recovery process.

So Then, What is a Three-Quarter House?

The main distinction between a halfway house and a three-quarter house is that there are many more freedoms granted to residents of three-quarter living. Often times, there is still a curfew imposed by the three-quarter house rules but it is later than that of a halfway house. Also, residents get to stay out even later on weekends. Another freedom afforded to residents is the overnight and weekend pass which allows them to go on trips and mini-vacations or to visit their families.

What to expect

Just like halfway houses, three-quarter houses are designed to support and encourage recovering alcoholics and addicts as they navigate the process of getting back on their feet, so to speak. While living at a three-quarter house, residents are encouraged to begin working again, as they are responsible for paying rent just like in any other housing situation. Three-quarter houses also provide much needed structure to their residents. There are rules and curfews. Residents are subject to random drug screening. This is to promote accountability as well as to ensure the safety and well-being of the other residents who are serious about their recovery. A typical requirement for living in a three-quarter house is to attend a specified number of 12 Step fellowship meetings (i.e. AA, NA, or CA). Again, this is done to ensure accountability on the residents’ behalf that they are continuing to work a program while doing all the typical day-to-day activities such as going to work, grocery shopping, etc.

Additional benefits and support

Besides providing a safe, drug-free environment, three-quarter houses may provide their own, or access to intensive outpatient programs. These programs offer continuing group therapy to residents of three-quarter houses and usually do so in the form of evening sessions so that residents can attend work while receiving therapy. Being a sober living community in and of itself can be beneficial to its residents because they have the added benefit of living with sober peers. Often times, residents of the three-quarter house will have impromptu and informal meetings amongst themselves. Or they may even decide to have weekly meetings and literature (i.e. the Big Book) study groups.

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

Managing Your Sex Addiction in a Sober House

managing sex addiction in a sober house

Many people who come to a sober house are what are called “dual diagnosis” meaning they are suffering from addiction plus some other mental condition like depression, anxiety or bipolar disorder. Many sober house residents are also cross-addicted, meaning that they are addicted to drugs/alcohol as well as sex, gambling, shopping, food, etc. Some addicts and alcoholics aren’t even aware that they are cross-addicted until they get clean and sober. They will notice that they are suddenly acting out in other ways, trying to get a “fix” or a “high” when they no longer have access to their drug of choice.

Sex addiction is one of the most common cross-addictions for addicts and alcoholics. Sober houses know this. That is why sober houses are usually set up to help you manage your sex addiction.

Managing Your Sex Addiction in a Sober House: Tell on Yourself

If you begin to notice that you are having thoughts about acting out on your sex addiction in a sober house, the best thing you can do is to get honest about it. The staff is there to help you to recover from all addictions, and a sober house environment is most effective when the staff knows what is going on with you. Remember: our secrets keep us sick. In early recovery, we must learn to tell on ourselves consistently. This is a big part of managing your sex addiction in a sober house.

Managing Your Sex Addiction in a Sober House: Take suggestions

Remember that part of living in a sober house is learning to take suggestions! The staff at a sober house have a lot of experience dealing with addiction. They know what works and what doesn’t. Managing your sex addiction in a sober house is a lot easier when you take suggestions, even when you don’t like them! Sober house staff may encourage you to seek out same-sex friendships and to avoid opposite sex friendships, especially in the early days of recovery. If they see you acting out on your sex addiction, they may enforce consequences. This is all done to help you with managing your sex addiction in a sober house so that later, when you are living on your own, you will have a better chance at staying sober.

Managing Your Sex Addiction in a Sober House: Follow the rules!

Sober house rules are specifically aimed at helping you in managing your sex addiction in a sober house. The structure is there for a reason, so use it! When you follow the rules and go with the flow, your experience with sober living will be much more pleasant. They make it easy on you because you do not have to decide whether or not to stay out late with a date or to have a man/women spend the night-you have a curfew and usually no sleepovers are allowed. This way, when you are faced with the decision to either do the right thing or give into your sex addiction, you will have more incentive to make the healthy choice.

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

Relationships in Recovery

Relationships in Recovery

Relationships in Recovery

Relationships in Recovery

Someone once said to me “If you want to test your sobriety, get into a relationship.” I didn’t really understand the truth of that statement until I got into a relationship in recovery. Relationships in recovery can be tricky, particularly if you are a new to recovery. I was warned, very early on, not to get into a relationship in the first year of my sobriety. Like most things in my life, this was a lesson I was destined to learn the hard way.

Relationships in Recovery: Relationships in early sobriety

I met the guy who was destined to be my first “recovery boyfriend” at a fellowship event that my treatment center attended. He had two years sober; I had eight days. We started dating the day I got out of treatment, and it didn’t take long for the relationship to go from good, to bad, to total shit show. I realized I was using him to fill the void left by drugs and alcohol. He made me feel good, wanted. I never thought about the fact that I had nothing to offer this guy. I was unemployed, living in a halfway house, and taking the bus. But it felt good to be wanted. Maybe on some level, I thought he had the secret to sobriety. He had, after all, stayed sober longer than I ever had. Maybe I was just lonely and insecure. Whatever the reason, I stayed with this guy long after it was clear that the relationship was unhealthy. When it finally ended, I got really, really depressed. I hadn’t really developed a relationship with a higher power, because I didn’t really need to. I had the guy. Without the guy, without the drugs, and without a relationship with God, I was lost.

Relationships in Recovery: Relationships later in sobriety

The good news about my early relationship in recovery is that I did not relapse. Instead, I threw myself into the program, re-worked steps, and got connected with my higher power. After some time single, I started dating again.

I quickly learned that even though I was no longer new in sobriety, relationships in recovery aren’t easy. They are much like relationships in the real world. They have the same ups and downs. They can be hard, scary, and (usually) worth it.

But relationships in recovery have an added twist; especially if both people are in recovery. The upside to dating someone else in recovery is that they usually have a similar lifestyle. You won’t have to hang out in bars all night and they speak the same language. If both parties are working a solid program of recovery, they can have an even better chance than non-alcoholics of a successful relationship. However, that’s a big if, and chances are, you both won’t always be at the top of your game-recovery wise. As alcoholics, when me or my boyfriend aren’t on top of our recovery, we become selfish, self-seeking, and fearful-which can be poison to relationships in recovery. Thus the biggest challenge, for me, is allowing my boyfriend to work his own program and not trying to control what he does. Ultimately, the most important element in my relationship is fate. The minute I try to control things is the minute everything falls apart. Just like with my addiction, I need to give it up to a higher power and have faith that everything will work out.

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

Sober Living Environment History

Sober Living Environment History

The origins of sober living environments are thought to be started in England during the 1800s. The first “halfway house” was established in the United States in Pennsylvania in 1817. Sober living environments or halfway houses were first used as traveler’s stops. For example a halfway house in Illinois was a place for a person traveling to and from Chicago in the 1800s. It was built in 1843 and was used as a stopping place for weary travelers. These halfway houses of course are not called halfway houses anymore they are known as “motels” or “inns” which we still use today.

Sober living environment which includes halfway houses and sober living homes are for those who are chemically dependent on a substance such as alcohol or drugs. Those who are dependent on alcohol or drugs go to halfway houses after receiving treatment at a treatment center. The term halfway house which is different from the term used in the 1800s for the weary travelers was adopted by the treatment industry. It is not a requirement to stay at a halfway house or sober living environment in order to stay sober but those who do choose to go to a sober living environment do so for about three to six months.

Sober living environments and halfway houses have also been used to house criminals and have been and are controversial. In one incident that happened in British Columbia, three murderers in an area were connected with a halfway house. People who lived near the house were trying to get the federal law changed regarding recent parolees and halfway houses.

And new in sober living environment history; recently China opened its first halfway house for Internet addiction. This sober living environment is only for minors who stay in the house for one night while away from their parents. This sober living environment was established because of fears of children getting hooked on video games.

Sober living environment history or halfway house history has come a long way but the term halfway house and sober living environment is almost strictly used now days to describe a place where men and women can go to complete their formal treatment and to remain sober. Sober living environments are now a common staple for those in recovery and can be found in different neighborhoods and areas all over the United States and world.

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

How to Enter a Sober House

How to enter a sober house

How to enter a sober house

 

 

After a stay in a residential drug and alcohol treatment center, it is generally recommended that a client enter a sober house. A sober house, or halfway house, is an alcohol and drug free living environment for people in recovery. Sober houses provide an environment that is often essential to the recovery of a drug addict or alcoholic.

 Sober houses provide structure to those newly in recovery as they try to get their life on track. Generally, sober houses enforce rules regarding curfew, chore schedules, and attendance at 12-step meetings. Residents at sober houses usually have to be actively involved in recovery. Also, residents are usually required to have a job, attend school, or volunteer in the community during the day. Drugs and alcohol are strictly prohibited, and most sober houses give the residents regular drug tests. 

Sober houses provide an interim step between a highly structured treatment environment and a person in recovery living on his or her own. Better outcomes are shown for those individuals who participate in this gradual phasing process: more remain sober, and those that remain sober do so for a longer period in time.

So if you make the decision to enter a sober house after treatment, here are the steps you should take:

1. Ask the treatment center for a recommendation: Treatment centers generally have a relationship with sober houses in the area, and they can recommend a good house. This is helpful as not all sober houses offer the same high standard of care. Unfortunately, some sober houses are more like “flop houses,” rarely enforcing rules and allowing people to stay even when they are using drugs and alcohol. Your treatment center will tell you which ones are good and which to avoid.

2. Visit the sober house: Before you enter a sober house, go to each of the houses you are considering. Internet pictures are sometimes outdated and misleading. When you are shown a unit, note whether it is clean and in good repair. Ask if all of the units are the same as the one you are looking at. If possible, look at more than one unit. Inquire about rules and policies and procedures and what the repercussions are if someone breaks a rule.  Find out how much you must pay to move in, how much you will have to pay while you are there, and when rent is due. If possible, ask to look at a copy of the lease agreement. See if you must commit to a certain length of time, and how much notice you must give before you move out.

3. What to bring: Once you have decided on the sober house, you must prepare to enter a sober house. Make sure you have a copy of all the house rules before you move in. All sober houses prohibit weapons, illicit drugs and alcohol, and drug paraphernalia. However, sober houses have different rules regarding what else you may bring (such as perfume, over the counter medications, and mouthwash).If you have somewhere else to store them, it is wise not to bring valuables into a sober house. As strictly as the rules are enforced, sometimes theft does occur when you enter a sober house. Ask your sober house manager if the sober house provides a safe place to store valuables. Finally, some sober houses require you to bring certain items (like a pillow, sheets, or toilet paper) other sober houses provide these things for you. Find out exactly what you will need before you enter a sober house.

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

What is the Difference Between a Sober House and a Halfway House?

What is the Difference Between a Sober House and a Halfway House?

 

By Jenny Hunt

There is a lot of debate over the difference between a sober house and a halfway house. Often these terms are used interchangeably. Some claim that there is no difference between a sober house and a halfway house; it’s just a matter of semantics or regional phrasing.

For those that insist there is a difference between a sober house and a halfway house, however, the general consensus seems to be that a sober house is just one type of halfway house. A halfway house is a residential center where recovering drug addicts and alcoholics, sex offenders, the mentally ill, or convicted felons are placed immediately after their release from a primary institution such as a prison, hospital or rehabilitation facility. Sober house refers to the halfway houses for recovering drug addicts and alcoholics.

Whether or not there is a difference between a sober house and a halfway house, it’s generally agreed that both sober houses and halfway houses provide a safe and clean environment for people released from an institution as they transition back into society. Sober houses and halfway houses bridge the gap between living in a highly structured institution (jail, rehab, hospital) and living in the outside world.

Some sober houses and halfway houses are state funded and allow residents to pay on a sliding scale depending on income. Most sober houses, however, are privately owned and residents are expected to pay their own way. Both privately funded and state funded sober houses usually administer regular drug screening and enforce rules regarding curfew, guests, and house chores.

Sober houses require you to be actively participating in a 12-step program. They usually will require you to have a sponsor and attend a certain number of 12-step meetings per week. This can be very beneficial to those newly in sobriety. Often, there is a tendency to get complacent about sobriety when you start to feel better and your life starts returning to normal. Drug addicts and alcoholics tend to forget the wreckage of the past and the power of their addiction. This can be very dangerous in sobriety and can lead to a relapse. A sober house can give you the push you need to maintain an active recovery.

Spending a few months in a sober house can help a recovering alcoholic or drug addict gain the strength they need to re-enter society. Often, when a drug addict or alcoholic gets clean and sober, they have to change many things about themselves in order to maintain their sobriety. This could include changing jobs or eliminating relationships that are toxic. Sober housing provides a secure place to adjust to all these life changes.

Living in a sober house gives the drug addict or alcoholic the opportunity to build new and healthy friendships and working relationships. They allow you to form and maintain a strong support system with other people in recovery. A sober house allows the recovering alcoholic to learn tools that they will need to live a productive, alcohol and drug-free life.

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

Rules in A Sober House

 

Most sober houses have a few basic rules in order to create structure for each individual’s needs in their sober living. These rules are in place to help the addict or alcoholic looking to recover to have the best possible chance of becoming a functioning member of society again. Rule number one is to stay clean and pass your drug test, rule number two is to get home before your set curfew and the last rule is to complete all chores and respect others and their property.

The first and main rule in a sober house is you must stay clean and pass your drug tests. This is essential because the whole point of a sober house is to help you stay sober and to keep the other individuals in the sober house safe from harm due to using by themselves or others. Along with this rule most sober houses have a relapse protocol or relapse policy if you cannot or do not pass a drug test and end up relapsing. This policy or protocol makes sure each person gets treated the same when they relapse. This relapse policy usually consists of a time limit in which the person must leave the sober house.

The second rule in a sober house that is essential to a person’s accountability and recovery is the curfew. Most sober houses have a certain time period in which individuals must be out of the house looking for employment or volunteering along with a certain time they must be home depending on how long they have been a residence at the sober house. Most curfews begin somewhat early the first 30 days you are there, around 10pm and after 30 days can be as late as 11pm or 12am on weekdays and 1am on weekends. The later curfew is a reward for following all the other rules in a sober house. Non-compliance with the early curfew or the other rules in a sober house can result in an earlier curfew or the inability to get a later curfew. Punishment for being late on curfew can be getting your curfew at 11pm pushed back to 8pm, if it happens more than once then it can result in being asked to leave the sober house.

The third rule in a sober house has to do with chores, cleanliness and getting along with others. The rules in a sober house consist of doing daily or weekly chores along with following the basic guidelines of not touching other people’s things. The failure to do your chores can result on early curfew and if persisting it can result in being asked to leave the sober house. These chores are fairly simple and consist of the members of the sober house working together to keep their living space clean and hygienic.

These Sober House rules help each individual to become accountable, reliable, helpful and active members of their sober house and community.

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