Sober Living Home Fence in Boston Massachusetts

How a Sober Living Home Can Help You

Staying in a sober living home is a great option for people looking to stay clean once they become sober.

While rehab is great for getting clean and taking that much needed break to work on personal matters, many times it just isn’t enough to stay clean during everyday life.

Sober living homes are a great transition from rehab to give you the tools you need and help you live more independently without the use of narcotics.

What is a Sober Living Home?

A sober living home provides you with a safe, peaceful environment usually alongside other’s that are also recovering from addiction.

Although you may need to be home by a certain time or take random drug tests, the goal of a sober living home is to help you become responsible for yourself. Therefore, compared to rehab centers, there is much more freedom to come and go as you please.

Benefits of sober living homes may include:

  • Organized meetings
  • A safe, drug free environment
  • Help finding work if needed
  • Connections to outpatient recovery programs
  • Empowers and supports your journey to become free from substances
  • Provides the time and support needed to restructure your life, free from your old environment that may not have been as healthy
  • Coordinated in a thoughtful way to help you with recovery

Are sober living homes actually effective?

Yes, there is anecdotal and empirical evidence that sober living houses actually make a significant difference. People that reside in sober living homes generally have better results and are able to stay sober more consistently and for longer periods of time with a lower rate of relapse.

Tharros Sober Living House in Boston Massachusetts

Tharros offers a highly supportive version of sober living, which includes an extensive peer support model.  To learn what’s different about Tharros, view our Tharros Experience Page.

Living Sober in Massachusetts Sun Meditation

15 Tips for Living Sober in Massachusetts

Although there are a variety of programs available to help you on your journey to sobriety, living sober in Massachusetts can still be a daunting task if not prepared.

From specific addiction targeted sober living programs like Alcoholics Anonymous, to sober living homes, finding a strategy that works best for you is what matters most.

The following tips, while simple, may each make a huge impact on your path towards living a clean, sober life.

15 Tips for Living Sober in Massachusetts

  1. Get involved with the community.
  2. Dump the friends that bring you down and make friends with the people that lift you up.
  3. Take it one day at a time.
  4. Take responsibility for your life – no blaming others or making excuses.
  5. Be forgiving.
  6. Discover your passions and pursue them.
  7. Take on a hobby that allows self-expression.
  8. Spend more time around nature.
  9. When you wake up, close your eyes and picture 5 things in life that you are grateful for.
  10. Create goals for the type of person you would like to be and the things you would like to do.
  11. Use mindfulness to become more self-aware.
  12. Meditate.
  13. Never underestimate the control that your addiction may have.
  14. Learn more about living sober.
  15. Explore the sites and scenery in Massachusetts without drugs and alcohol.

Above all try not to be too hard on yourself; we all have weaknesses that can trigger a relapse. No matter what happens there is always help and various sober living programs to help you in living a clean, sober life.

Tharros Sober Living Home in Boston, Massachusetts

Tharros house brings together a sober community of like-minded individuals with aftercare, allowing you to learn new skills to overcome the challenges ahead in a fresh, fun, and encouraging way. Learn more about how Tharros House can help you.

man in backpack thinking about addiction recovery programs

Types of Addiction Recovery Programs

There are many different types of addiction recovery programs out there.  For someone who is working to recover from an addiction, it is important to consider the pros and cons of the different programs in order to choose the best option for their individual needs.  A few of the addiction recovery programs available are explained below.

Alcohol Anonymous: This program is a 12-step program that provides support and guidance in the form of a support group for the recovering addict as well as their family and loved ones.

Cognitive Behavior Therapy (CBT):  Cognitive Behavior Therapy has been shown to be effective at using an understanding of how thoughts influence behavior and emotions to manage addiction.  It also works to change the underlying thoughts of an individual that contribute to the maintenance of the addiction.

Detoxification (Detox): A detox program involves a patient going through the withdrawal process being monitored and treated with necessary medications in order to manage the symptoms that occur during withdrawal.  A detox can be done on an outpatient or inpatient basis.  This is not a complete type of treatment and should be followed up with additional treatment methods.

Family Therapy:  Family therapy involves a therapeutic approach that takes into account the recovering addict’s family’s strengths and resources in order to help the individual live their life without the use of alcohol or drugs.  This method seeks to reduce the consequences of addiction on both the substance abuser and their family.

Group Therapy: Group therapy uses a group setting to provide positive peer-to-peer support and assistance and coping techniques.  This type of therapy can be more cost-effective than others.  Group therapy is often used in inpatient and outpatient facilities in addition to individualized therapy treatments.

These are just a few of the many addiction treatment methods out there.  Each person going through the recovery process will need to weigh their options and choose the best method for their own recovery.

sober living home backyard path to recovery

What Are Sober Living Homes?

Sober living homes are places where recovering addicts can live in a safe, drug-free environment to continue with their recovery.  These homes do not provide actual treatment, but they do provide a clean-living space for recovering addicts to work on discontinuing their destructive habits.  Sober living homes have rules for their residents, which provide structure.

Benefits of Sober Living Homes

Additionally, they have organized recovery meetings.  Sober living homes also help their residents find work or connections with school programs.  They also provide their residents with connections to outpatient recovery programs.  Sober living residences also require regular drug tests, and of course, drugs and alcohol are banned from the homes.  Sober living homes are less costly than staying in an inpatient rehab facility while providing someone in recovery the same type of safety net of being separated from their temptations and having the benefit of being surrounded by others who are also working towards recovery from addiction.

Who Lives in Sober Living Homes?

Many residents in a sober living home are in active treatment or attending a twelve-step program of some kind.  The homes only provide indirect support during the recovery process, but this indirect support can make a huge difference.

How Effective Are Sober Living Homes?

There is evidence, both anecdotal and empirical, that sober living homes do make a significantly positive difference in the process of recovery.  Generally, those who reside in sober living homes show better overall results over time on their path to recovery.  Typically, recovering addicts who live in sober living homes tend to stay sober longer and more consistently, avoid legal trouble, hold a consistent job, and have a lower rate of relapse.

Sober living homes can be hugely beneficial to those working towards recovery from addiction.  While everyone is different and there are a variety of different approaches to take in recovery, these homes are a good place to start the journey.

Tharros offers a highly supportive version of sober living, which includes an extensive peer support model.  To learn what’s different about Tharros, view our Tharros Experience Page

Green Recovery House Sign

Alternatives to Twelve-Step Programs

When many people think of addiction recovery, one of the first things that come to mind is the group Alcoholics Anonymous (or AA) and the 12-step program for recovery.  While Alcoholics Anonymous and similar groups are typically thought of as treatment, they are more accurately defined as support groups.  Unfortunately, according to addiction treatment researcher Thomas McLellan, Ph.D., studies seem to indicate that only 25-35 percent of addicts who attend an AA meeting actually go on to continue with the program and attend meetings regularly.

Women for Sobriety

Women for Sobriety was created by Jean Kirkpatrick in the 1970s.  Jean Kirkpatrick held a doctorate in sociology and focused her program on the premise that women with drinking problems require a different recovery approach and plan than men do.  Women for Sobriety is an abstinence-based program which sets out to first tackle the emotional issues that may lead to addiction.

SMART Recovery

SMART Recovery uses a cognitive-behavior approach that encourages its members to first acknowledge the emotional and environmental factors for drug and alcohol use and then to respond to these factors in new and more productive ways.  SMART Recovery is abstinence-based; however, it does welcome individuals who are ambivalent about their recovery.  It has over 600 groups based in the United States, and it also has a youth program along with a Family & Friends program.

LifeRing Secular Recovery

LifeRing Secular Recovery was formed over a decade ago.  It has three main principles— sobriety, secularity, and self-help.  This group focuses on human efforts instead of divine intervention.  It also holds the belief that the key to recovery is within the individual and is based on their own motivation and effort.

Refuge Recovery

Refuge Recovery is a nonprofit, mindfulness-based addiction recovery organization. They provide a community that uses Buddhist philosophy to help people recover from addiction. Inspired by the teachings of the Four Noble Truths, Refuge Recovery places emphasis on being more empathetic and understanding.

Celebrate Recovery

Celebrate Recovery was founded by John Baker in 1991. Focusing on a Christ centered approach, Celebrate Recovery has spread to recovery houses, rescue missions, universities, and prisons around the world. To date over 35,000 Celebrate Recovery churches have been opened with over 5 million individuals having completed the Celebrate Recover’s Step Study, a program created to bring the healing power of Christ to those that are suffering, broken, and having life difficulties like as addiction.

Although Alcoholics Anonymous is not for everyone there are many other support groups available, such as the groups listed above.  These other groups may be more useful approaches if someone struggling with addiction does not find Alcoholics Anonymous to be the best approach.

Sober Living Home Fence in Boston Massachusetts

Sober Living Homes

For those suffering from addiction, sober living homes can be helpful when trying to maintain abstinence from drugs and alcohol.  A stable and drug-free environment is important for continued recovery from addiction.

Sober Living House Expectations

While there are different types of sober living home arrangements, there are some general expectations that apply to sober living houses.  These include:

-No stealing from the house

-Paying fees/dues on time

-No drinking alcohol

-No taking drugs

-No sexual activity with other residents

-No violent actions

Tips for Staying Sober in a Sober Living Residence

  • Attend a 12-Step Program – A 12-step program is a support group for people working to overcome addiction.  There are meetings every day that you can attend as needed.  Many people in the support group have experienced similar circumstances and can offer guidance on how they overcame their own personal setbacks on their path to recovery.
  • Exercise Three Times a Week – Exercising releases endorphins, which make you feel good and elevate your mood.  Exercise can also help reduce compulsive behaviors.
  • Eat Three Meals a Day – Eating healthy foods on a regular schedule is an important part of your overall health.  A person dealing with substance abuse is more likely to relapse if they also have unhealthy eating habits.
  • Get a Sponsor and Contact Them When Needed – A sponsor is a mentor for someone recovering from addiction.  A sponsor is usually at a point in their own recovery where they have already worked through many of the issues that someone newly dealing with addiction recovery is experiencing, so they can be a helpful resource.

While in the process of recovering from addiction, it is important to set goals for yourself and come up with a long-term recovery plan.  Living in a sober living residence, such as the Tharros House can help you progress with recovery from your addiction.

Living a Sober Life in Massachusetts

Living the Good, Sober Life

Stick around people in recovery long enough, and you’ll hear a common message: Sober is better.  In Boston, it sounds more like Sobah is Bettah!  But there’s a reason for the statement, however you pronounce it- for those who stay sober and get recovery, life gets really good!

Road to a better life:

Let’s be clear.  Not many people wake up one day, decide to stop using substances for no reason, and then find that life is better without them.  Usually, there is a reason to stop.  What worked for us at one time, has stopped working.  So we’re willing to try something different.  Some of us engage treatment, a sober community or sober housing.  We look for ways to engage sober support to help us stay sober while working on our recovery.  Yes, most of us had to find sobriety, in order to find recovery.  Sober recovery led us to a life where we felt better, found joy, and discovered, sober is better!

What is sober recovery?

Sober recovery is more than abstinence from alcohol and drugs.  Recovery is about changing the way we engage in life, looking at what’s important to us, and taking action to build a life we want to live without substances.  Stopping your coping mechanisms (drinking/drugs) and taking no further action isn’t likely going to give you much recovery.  If you like white knuckles, this is your path!  To get more, we do more.

What is the sober way?

Finding your path to a life of recovery isn’t easy.  But it’s worth it, and you can do it!  Most of us find it important to build a sober network, surround ourselves with a sober community, and engage sober support, like a sober coach or a sober house.  At Tharros, we’ve combined community with aftercare, and our house offers a safe place to explore sober meaning.  We focus on recovery, with you choosing the fellowship and resources that speak with you.  Our team has many different experiences in recovery, and we make many suggestions, while following a framework designed to help each person move toward a full and meaningful life.  We help you build a life you want to live!

We involve sober entertainment, sober games, sober jobs, and sober dating too!  Living life in recovery doesn’t mean giving up what’s important to you; to the contrary, it’s about finding what’s important to you, building it, and living life in a way that’s meaningful to you!  For those of us on that path, it’s easy to say, Sobah is Bettah!

To learn more about Tharros House and our approach to recovery, visit http://tharroshouse.com/about-2/ or read more of our blog posts at http://tharroshouse.com/blog/

 

Types of drug abuse in Boston Massachusetts

Treating Drug Abuse in Massachusetts

There can be a fine line between regular use of drugs and drug abuse. To find out whether or not someone that is using drugs is dependent on them or just taking them recreationally you can ask yourself these two questions:

  1. Why does the personal use drugs?
  2. What happens when they are under the influence of drugs?

What makes someone abuse drugs?

Many times people with alcohol dependence and/or drug problems use the drugs to acquire a specific effect, such as escaping emotions.  While there may be many reasons for someone to use drugs, the people that become addicted usually all desire the escape.

It is still possible to like the escape / feeling that comes with alcohol and drug use while not having a drug problem, which brings us to the second question of ‘What happens when they are under the influence of drugs?”. Behaviors such as blacking out, uncontrolled drinking, and not caring about the negative consequences that come from drinking alcohol / taking drugs can all point towards a drug abuse problem.

Ignoring the Consequences

A major sign that someone has a drug abuse issue is that the user will continue using despite all the negative consequences of their actions. Take a DUI for example – a normal users would try to ensure that they never get in this situation again and avoid it completely. People with drug abuse disorders would recognize that they definitely don’t want another DUI but would continue to get themselves in the same situations and still take the risk.

Treating Drug Abuse

Once someone has accepted that they have a drug problem the first step, depending on the severity of the problem, is to go to a drug detox facility. Going cold turkey after years of abusing drugs or alcohol can have serious life threatening consequences, so it’s important to do it the right way.

Once completely detoxed the most important thing to do is to go through primary treatment, aka rehab. Rehab is essential to drug recovery as it removes the person from all the daily stresses and triggers in everyday life that play a role in their addiction. When the person leaves rehab there are oftentimes many challenges in the day to day life.

This is where sober living comes in. Living in a sober house helps by giving you the tools you need to succeed in everyday life. At Tharros, we work with people who have already finished some form of major alcohol or drug treatment.  Our clients are sober and free from drugs.  A commitment to staying free from all mind changing drugs is a condition of living at Tharros House.  People usually stay between 4-6 months, however some reside as long as a year, or longer.

We believe that learning how to live life without having to pick up a drink or a drug is seriously important, but it’s just part of the process.  At Tharros House, we concentrate on skills to maintain sobriety, but also on helping each client to build a life that they want to live in being sober.  Our staff helps each client to recognize how to include purpose, meaning, success, and other key factors of a joyful life.  Clients direct their personal recovery with support, suggestions, and accountability provided by our team and community.  Learning the skills of life are incorporated both on an individual basis through activities like grocery shopping, meal planning, and service commitments, and on a group basis, like cooking classes.

Rehabilitation from drug abuse isn’t usually a quick process.  It requires effort, and it takes time.  Building a solid foundation will serve you for your entire life, which is the reason why we solely accept clients ready to put sobriety and recovery as their top priority.  To learn more about our approach and get answers to common questions, please visit http://tharroshouse.com/faq/.

Sober Programs in Boston Massachusetts

Sober Programs – What to Look For

This blog post about sober programs and what to look for was sent in by a sober guest blogger that wished to remain anonymous.

Sober Programs

Sober houses in Massachusetts and sober programs have become more prevalent as a result of the recent addiction crisis in the Northeast. Having a sober community with activities and companions is one thing I know contributed greatly to my sobriety. Sober housing is not a new concept, but when an individual is looking to get sober, it is probably new to that person.

Most people start their journey to recovery at a detox center or a thirty-day rehab program. This is a great first step, after admitting that you have a problem with drugs and/or alcohol. After this initial treatment, the chances of long term success are greatly increased when the person in recovery engages a supportive environment.

All sober homes offer similar, yet different things. For example, one sober home may not offer a coach or a companion, but will offer a sober driver for transportation. Whether you are looking to get sober, it’s important to build a community of like-minded people. This is what all sober homes have in common- community.

From experience having roommates who were also sober, living with sober minded people, and creating a network of people who were on the same path were all among the most important parts of my early recovery. I needed a to surround myself with sobriety in order to maintain a healthy lifestyle, free from drugs and alcohol. I remember back when I was living in my sober house and I went on a date. If you have never gone on a date as a sober person, it’s hard! Yet, having my roommates, I was able to get some great ideas!

I never thought the day would come where I would feel comfortable being sober in a nightclub, singing karaoke, or hanging out with musicians. In my experience the more like-minded people I met, the more comfortable I became in my skin. I was told to pick and commit to a path of recovery, and for me, it became the beginning of choosing a sober way of life. Whether it be AA, NA, Smart Recovery, or Dharma Punks, being around a clean, sober and healthy environment can do wonders for maintaining your sobriety.

When most people first get clean, they can never imagine being sober forever. People in AA would say, its “one day at a time” to recovery, and they are right. So my suggestion, when you’re stringing together a day at a time, is to create time with friends, build a support system, such as AA, and maybe even ask about jobs or other opportunities to hang with other sober singles.

Who would of thought entertainment, dating, games, and events while sober would be fun! I certainly didn’t in the beginning – but after time it became completely normal and actually much more fun / rewarding. So when you’re out looking for sober programs, remember to look for support in the community you’re involved in – it sure went a long way for me!

You deserve a joyous and meaningful life. Visit us at www.TharrosHouse.com to learn more about receiving the right guidance and support at Tharros House in Lexington, MA.