If you are newly on the road to recovery, achieving sobriety can seem nearly impossible. Every day that you stay sober is a monumental achievement, but it can still feel like no one really understands what you are going through. That’s why having the support of people who know exactly what you are going through is incredibly helpful. Those who offer peer support for addiction recovery are people who have been where you are and know what you’re going through. Having peer support on your recovery journey can make a huge difference.
What is Peer Support for Addiction Recovery?
Peer support has been a fundamental part of the recovery community for decades. In groups like Alcoholics Anonymous or Narcotics Anonymous, you might have a sponsor. A sponsor is someone who has some time in the program and can offer guidance and support to those new to recovery. In a more structured treatment environment, like rehab, peer support builds off of this blueprint.
Peer supporters are people, like you, who have struggled with addiction. They are those who have not only achieved sobriety but continue to live life in sobriety. They’re able to share their experience to shape their guidance and advice to support you on the road to recovery. While counselors, doctors, and therapists may not always have first-hand experience of living with addiction, peer supporters have lived with and recovered from addiction.
How Does Peer Support Help in Addiction Recovery?
Having a system of support helps to strengthen your recovery. Knowing that your family, friends, and your addiction recovery team are there to encourage your continued sobriety is incredibly helpful. But having the additional care and support from someone who has been where you are can strengthen your chances of successfully staying sober.
Your peer supporter can:
Give you helpful advice. It can be difficult to separate truth from fiction when it comes to addiction and recovery. Getting the advice of someone who has gone through the process will help dispel any fears or concerns you might have about the process. Additionally, occasionally you might have questions that might not feel right about asking your doctor or therapist. It’s likely that your peer supporter had those same questions, too. Peer supporters in addiction recovery can give you the answers you are looking for.
Provide wellness education resources. Most of us have gotten lost in Google search results when trying to find help for ourselves. Your peer support person can get you the resources you need to support your recovery journey.
Be your cheerleader. Addiction takes a heavy toll on self-esteem. It can cause you to lose sight of your self-worth and dreams. Your peer support person can help remind you of your value, and to set — and achieve — your goals for the future.
What are the Benefits of Peer Support for Addiction?
Recovering from addiction sometimes means that you have to let go of some friendships or relationships. This isn’t an easy process and your friends or family. However, building new relationships within the recovery community is essential to maintaining your sobriety. There are many benefits to peer support, including:
- Reducing your risk of relapse. Peer supporters have been where you are and have worked through cravings and triggers, and maintained their sobriety. In fact, studies have shown that peer support helps significantly reduce your risk of relapse.
- Being role models for recovery. It is important to have role models for living in sobriety. Having general support for your recovery is important for your overall well-being. But having a network of support that can “walk the walk” will give you the guidance you need to model your own sober lifestyle.
- Giving you a sense of hope. There is a reason that sobriety is done one day at a time. Recovery — especially in the early days — is difficult. Having a network of folks who have come through and are out on the other side can give you hope for your own journey’s success.
- Helping you develop sober strategies and other coping skills. Learning how to navigate stressful events, triggers, and other life events while sober can be tricky. Your peer support network can not only be there for you when you need a safe place to deal with complex events, but can help you develop the tools you need for maintaining sobriety during these times.
Ambrosia Treatment Center’s Alumni Program
One of the things we do at Ambrosia Treatment Center is to ensure that those who complete any one of our addiction rehab programs are connected and supported in the Ambrosia recovery community and beyond for life. When clients complete treatment, they enter a new chapter of their recovery; and being around those in recovery can be both inspiring and encouraging.
Lasting relationships can be formed in addiction treatment. Reuniting with friends in a supportive warm community is one of the goals of Ambrosia’s Community and Peer Support Program. The Community Support Team is committed to enabling clients to remain engaged with us, with our sober community, and in partnership with the larger local recovery community. This is a great way to avoid relapse and associate with others who can motivate you during the fragile time of early recovery.
The Ambrosia family will always support your recovery journey. We are here to help counsel you and your family members through difficult times.
Peer Support for Addiction in South Florida
You don’t have to recover alone. Research shows that maintaining relationships with peers in recovery will not only support you while in treatment but will help you maintain your sobriety long after rehab. At Ambrosia Treatment Center in South Florida, we offer peer support for addiction to help those recover. Contact us today and learn more about our admissions process to find out more about our treatment options.