Sober Holidays & Retreats Book a Break

Addiction Resource aims to provide only the most current, accurate information in regards to addiction and addiction treatment, which means we only reference the most credible sources available. Local and state resources for substance abuse and addiction can vary according to where you live. Before your holiday schedule becomes packed with parties, get-togethers, family dinners, and more, commit to getting regular sleep.

To them, sobriety is something less (and more) than a practice relevant only to clinically determined alcohol abusers. Now it can also just be something cool and healthful to try, like going vegan, or taking an Iyengar yoga class. If you are interested in discussing a holiday at New Life Portugal please contact us at CATCH Recovery. We will take your details and pass them over to New Life Portugal who can contact you directly about their holidays. Sara Moniuszko is a health and lifestyle reporter at Previously, she wrote for USA Today, where she was selected to help launch the newspaper’s wellness vertical.

Fr. Mick Moon combines counseling, spirituality at 5 Door Recovery

Our telehealth program gives you access to expert medical support, online coaching meetings, anti-craving medications, virtual support groups, and more—all from an app on your smartphone. It is important, especially in early sobriety, to never feel trapped at any holiday social gatherings, especially since there are likely to be temptations or triggers that need to be averted. Driving ourselves to a party or being sure we can access a car service should we carpool is an important detail to keep in mind. Sharing rides with friends who will want to stay the entire evening is too risky if we begin to feel uncomfortable. It is important to recognize that not everyone observes the holidays as joyful.

  • On a recent night, the crowd skewed young and female, and the general vibe recalled an office holiday party, minus any leers from sloppy Sam in accounting.
  • Mine includes everyone getting out of my face while I pound sugar like I live in a timeline where size-zero clothes and diabetes never existed.
  • Depending on our life circumstances, we book them around school holidays and/or our work calendar.
  • The stress of finding the perfect gift, or budgeting for gifts, can be a trigger for people in recovery, as stress in general is a common relapse trigger.
  • Get the help you need from a therapist near you–a FREE service from Psychology Today.
  • Join the thousands of people that have called a treatment provider for rehab information.
  • It could even be fun, when it wasn’t all amends and affirmations.

Stress-reduction techniques provide a simple, yet essential strategy for helping to prevent relapse in addiction recovery, especially during a busy or stressful holiday season. If you’re sober, this can feel isolating and may bring up feelings of stress, frustration, and sadness. In early sobriety, it may be that we allow ourselves a half-hour at the beginning of the event to simply make an appearance, say our hello’s, and slip out quietly. Once we make a lap around the room to greet everyone, we can feel fairly certain that we won’t be missed once others are into their second, third, and fourth martini, at which time we will be back at home safe and sound. If it feels safe to stay at the party into the night then by all means enjoy the evening, but if feeling triggered or tempted starts to enter the picture we need to have a plan to exit without excuse.

Winter Holidays

Some families might consider the holidays an inappropriate time to help a loved one get into addiction treatment when, in fact, it could be an ideal opportunity. For many of the reasons mentioned above, substance abuse tends to ramp up over the holidays. Addiction treatment initiated during the holidays could be the best gift you give to your family, your friends and yourself. Tip #15  Remember that being in recovery doesn’t mean instant heaven or a perfect life.

Recognizing that self-care is as important as the other tasks on your to-do list can help put yourself at the top, and stop you from succumbing to holiday temptations. Practicing gratitude is not an exercise in the denial of difficult circumstances in our lives, nor is it the practice of taking inventory of our material possessions. Instead, it is simply remembering that there is value in everything, that life itself is a gift, and that the humility it requires to express thanks makes us more “right-sized” in our perceptions of ourselves.

Difficult Memories

So although this time of year can bring families together, substance use may also be part of the fabric of a family culture during celebratory events. Those showing up to social events sober can unintentionally hold a mirror up to those around them and lead to resistance and judgment. For individuals who have spent the past year surrounded by sober peers, having to spend this concentrated time home and with those who may not truly understand or respect their sobriety process may be stressful. Heading into the New Year can also be a time of reflection and even sadness about which direction life is going and which milestones a person believes they should have already reached. The pandemic has added another layer of challenges during the holiday season this year.

  • For those with a serious alcohol problem, it was a worthy decision, maybe even a lifesaving one.
  • Here are some tips and resources for preventing or responding to addiction relapse during the holiday season.
  • The choosing of a place to stay, the packing, the travelling from A to B, the pressure to have a good time, and, most significantly, the prevention of relapse.
  • I used to drink to enjoy family events with my kids, and now I realize they are pretty darn enjoyable when I’m not buzzed.

However, not everyone who experiences sadness or depression has a mental health condition, and these feelings can act as a trigger. Drinking, or using drugs, can be a pastime that’s taken for granted among friends and family. But it can alienate people who are sober, and that sense of isolation can become another trigger. The pressures and high expectations we place on the holiday season sometimes cause us to feel overwhelmed with stress and anxiety rather than merriment.

I spent the first day of 2017 horribly hungover and never had another drink. Six years later, I’m going into this year’s holiday season booze-free. I can piece most of it together through photos, but I openly admit that my memories are spotty, to say the least.