Relapse Excuses

Relapse Excuses

There is no good excuse for a relapse. However, there are several emotional triggers that are commonly used excuses people will use in order to justify a relapse.

Relapse Excuse #1. Resentment

Many of us have probably heard this: Resentments will take you back out. Holding a resentment is probably the most common relapse excuse. Resentments are usually in the form of:

Perceiving that others are trying to control their life

Expectations not being met

Perceiving that others are acting as if they are superior

Perceiving others to be hypocrites, taking others’ inventory

Superiors who abuse their power

Being hurt but others saying or doing something that negatively impacts the their self-esteem

When other people lie

Feeling slighted

Perceiving others to act unfair towards them and/or others

Relapse Excuse #2. Anger

“Holding onto anger is like drinking poison and expecting the other person to die” When feeling angry towards someone else, the recovering addict/alcoholic often thinks that they will punish these other people by relapsing; of course the only person they are going to hurt is themselves.

Relapse Excuse #3. Boredom

After getting clean and sober, you might find that you have a lot of free time on your hands. Without hobbies or pursuing other healthy interests, you may become bored. This is another common relapse excuse: boredom. When we become bored, we may begin romanticizing our previous lifestyle, remembering the “good ol’ times” and conveniently forget about all the horrible stuff. This is a dangerous trend because, in the newly sober person’s mind, addiction wasn’t so bad after all. That mindset combined with agony of boredom is enough to convince most that relapse is the way to remedy their situation.

Relapse Excuse #4. Loneliness

This is kind of like the boredom excuse. When we stop drinking and drugging, we have to change people, places, and things. We may begin to miss our drinking and using buddies and, if we are not proactive in making new sober friends and getting sober supports in our life, then being lonely is the perfect relapse excuse.

Relapse Excuse #5. Disappointment in sobriety

As recovering addicts and alcoholics, we are used to instant gratification. That said, a life beyond our wildest in dreams in recovery takes time. Often times, we have to rebuild our lives from scratch. For some in recovery, this is frustrating and upsetting. They expect results and immediately! When this doesn’t happen, they will use that as an excuse to relapse

Relapse Excuse #6. Feeling depressed

Many addicts and alcoholics also have a co-occurring, or dual diagnosis mental disorder such as depression or bipolar disorder. In fact, that is why many of us sought out drugs: to numb those bad feelings. So, in sobriety, when those feelings come back, we retreat to the way we always dealt with them – by using drugs.

For those who do not have an actual mental health diagnosis, depression is still a factor, as it is for non addicts and alcoholics. Depression is a fact of life. But again, for recovering addicts and alcoholics, the temptation to escape these negative feelings may become too great to deal with and lead them to relapse. It is important to learn coping mechanisms that don’t involve drug use in order to achieve emotional stability in recovery.

Relapse Excuse #7. Feeling happy

Conversely, many people who have experienced a relapse say that it is when things are going really well that they slip up. Perhaps it is a way of rewarding themselves for doing so well. For others, it is a way to increase the already good feeling they have naturally. As addicts and alcoholics, we seek to increase the pleasure-causing chemicals in our brains while in active addiction. Once we are sober, it might be that this “taste” of euphoria from normal everyday good things, that is enough of a high for others, is just what it takes to leave us craving something more intense therefore causing some to seek it in drugs and resulting in a relapse.

Relapse Excuse #8. “Forgetting”

So many times, I have heard people who relapse say that they weren’t sure anymore whether they were an alcoholic or addict. So, they decide to go back out and “test the waters.” People will use the relapse excuse that they decided they weren’t really an addict and/or alcoholic in order to start drinking and drugging again.

 

 

Sources:

http://alcoholism.about.com/

http://www.psychologytoday.com/

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

If I relapse should I go back to rehab?

Should I go back to rehab?

If I relapse should I go back to rehab?

Working in addiction treatment, this is a question that I hear all the time. Many people who go back to using drugs and alcohol after treatment don’t think they should go back to rehab if they relapse. They’ll say things like “I’ve been to rehab before and it didn’t work” or “I already know everything they have to tell me.” The thing is, rehab is a lot more than therapy and learning about recovery. Even if you feel like you have learned everything you need to know about the disease of addiction and yourself, there are still reasons you should go back to rehab if you relapse.

If I relapse should I go back to rehab? Environmental

One of the most important things about rehab is that it gives you a safe place to be during those early days of recovery. The first thirty days are often the hardest, and many addicts and alcoholics relapse during this time, especially if they are in the same environment where they were using. If you want different results, you need to do something differently, and changing your environment is one of the first changes you should make. Just because you know how to get sober, it doesn’t mean you actually can or will do it. This is why it is important for you to go back to rehab if you relapse.

If I relapse should I go back to rehab? Support

One of the most important reasons you should go back to rehab if you relapse is because of the support system it provides. The real thing that keeps people clean and sober is not knowledge of recovery, it is their relationships with other people; their support system. There is a reason that 12 step groups have meetings and you are supposed to get a sponsor-we need other people to recover. What most people need in early recovery is support from people who understand what they are going through, not tips on “how to avoid triggers.” They need to see people who were once where they are and who have had success in recovery. They need to build relationships with people who can show them how they can attain lasting recovery.

If I relapse should I go back to rehab? Knowledge

Ok, you may think that you know everything about recovery, but you don’t. Recovery is not about memorizing the 12 steps or reading every page of recovery literature. If you went back to drugs and alcohol, then there were obviously some fundamental things you did not learn in rehab. For example:

  • You did not surrender.
  • You did not take suggestions from people who were trying to help you.
  • You weren’t completely honest.
  • You were not open minded enough to learn everything you needed to know.

Most people who relapse, if they’re being honest with themselves, know that they did not grasp one or more of these fundamental concepts. Going back to rehab if you relapse is the safest and smartest option and it gives you the best chance for recovery in the future.

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

Common excuses for leaving a sober house

leaving a sober house

Excuses for wanting to leave sober living

I’ve heard a lot of excuses for wanting to leave sober living over the past year and a half. Let’s face it, sober living kind of sucks sometimes. You have to abide by rules, you have to get along with your roommates, and you have to keep things clean. Break any rules, and you’re on early curfew. It’s like living with your parents again, except your halfway house manager isn’t so easy to manipulate.

However, sober living is really important. It provides structure and can be an essential interim step between treatment and the real world. It can also provide a sober support system which is crucial to early sobriety. A lot of times, when someone makes excuses for wanting to leave sober living, it means they are not ready to leave.

Excuses for wanting to leave sober living: Costs too much

This is one of the excuses for wanting to leave sober living that I hear the most often. Many sober living homes cost more than renting a room in an apartment or a house. Sober living residences have to pay employees to enforce rules, give drug tests, and monitor the people that live there. However, in my experience, there is always a way to pay for a sober house if you want to. Firstly, almost all sober living houses require you to have a job, and I’ve seen even people making minimum wage pay for sober living. Secondly, some sober living houses will let you pay on a sliding scale or are able to take health insurance. Finally, if you are living in a sober house, you usually qualify for some sort of federal financial aid. Always remember, your recovery comes first, so staying in sober living should be your highest financial priority.

Excuses for wanting to leave sober living: Rules are too strict

When someone gives me these excuses for wanting to leave sober living, I automatically think that they are probably not ready to leave. Sober living is about learning to live with others and acceptance of house rules. It may be hard to see sometimes, but the rules are there to serve you and keep you sober.  Usually, when someone complains about the rules, it means they are not doing what they should be doing and they are headed down a dangerous path.

Excuses for wanting to leave sober living: My roommates are relapsing

If your roommates are relapsing, you should tell your house manager. Relapsing residents put everyone else in danger. If your house manager does not do anything about it, and this is common in your sober living environment, you may want to find a new sober living environment. However, this is not an excuse to leave sober living all together. Also, keep in mind that in the real world, you will be around people that are using drugs and/or drinking at some point.  If you have a strong program of recovery, you can stay sober no matter what the people around you are doing.

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