For many people, moving out of a residential or inpatient treatment facility for substance use can be a daunting task. Structured sober living homes can help because they provide individuals an opportunity to practice the recovery skills they have learned in a real world setting, while still having the support of staff and peers who promote ongoing sobriety.. These life-changing transitional programs help prepare the resident to live in a supportive and stable environment during the first few months of true sobriety.
Within the program, participants are often able to learn life skills and independence by learning to handle money, prepare meals, take care of their health and wellness, work at a job if they are able, and follow sober living rules. There can also be individualized help for specific challenges, but the end results are always the same – with the help of others, the resident can live in such a way that he or she can become prepared for a successful return to independent living.
Living the Rules
As with any program used to retrain the way someone thinks about themselves and the world around them, structured sober living programs have house rules that benefit both the participants and the other residents living within the house. To help everyone feel secure, supported, and comfortable, the standard in-house rules that apply are:
- Curfews are set in place to provide a safe home for all residents, both physically and mentally. Knowing the doors are secured after a certain hour can be very important to some people.
- Drug testing is mandatory because residents are trusted to keep their sober living pledge. A violation of that rule is a serious infraction.
- Group fellowship meetings are held regularly, and everyone is required to attend.
- Residents trust one another to clean the communal areas, help with common tasks, and keep the bathrooms sparkling.
Special rules can also apply to residents to help them become mindful of themselves and how they are changing amidst a growing awareness of that transformation. These rules include, but are not limited to the following:
- Receive medication only from staff (medication may be locked in a safe).
- Participate in mindful sober living.
- Attend all treatment programs.
- Take part in work or school courses.
- Pass screening for application.
Following these rules will help each member establish a firm foundation for living in recovery and help him or her learn to navigate a new life after the program ends.
Finding the Path
Anyone ready to leave a successful stay in a residential facility can easily transition into a structured sober living program. Requiring continued help with moving forward in life without substance use is nothing to be ashamed of because there are thousands of individuals seeking help at facilities like Real Recovery each year. With the continued support and real-life application of self-reliant tools, members can solidify coping mechanisms and practice positive habits in a nurturing environment.
Joining the program can be a life altering, positive affirmation and empowering step in a person’s life. By taking more control, remaining sober and clean, and following recovery house rules, residents can learn about their social, emotional, and mental triggers while surrounding themselves by others going through the same type of growth. Sober houses are built to encourage healthy behaviors and inspire strong social support. Integration back into life as a fully sober individual can be as simple as contacting a sober house for information on the treatment of substance use today.