Chances are this is the first time you have been sober and lived away from your family and/or hometown where everything was so familiar to you. Many substance abuse counselors, like the therapists you worked with in your inpatient addiction treatment program, will give you credit for making the first suggested change necessary to maintain your sobriety, which is moving into a halfway house in Chicago. This automatically distances you from the people you used to drink and get high with on a regular basis.
The physical distance is definitely a good start to separate you from the built-in temptations and open opportunity to relapse if you chose to spend more than five minutes in the company of anyone in active addiction, particularly your former drinking/using buddies. Equally important is your commitment to not try to contact anybody you used with or got drugs from in the past. This means no phone calls, texts, Facebook chats, emails, or even hand-written letters delivered the old-fashioned way.
The second recommended change is to maintain healthy boundaries with your family members. Remember what you learned in treatment about critical topics like enabling, co-dependency, and manipulating addict behaviors? If you spend your free time trying to contact your mom or spouse or sibling, who are not addicts in recovery, you will not be focused on you, your recovery and the changes you need to begin to make right now if you want to build a healthy, new, addiction-free life.
So who should you be developing contact with on a daily basis? The people who will become an integral part of your network of support and the third categorical change. You can start with individuals you live with in the halfway house. While you are deciding who to reach out to for a phone number, you should also be evaluating the individuals with long-term recovery as possible sponsors.
The sooner you get a sponsor, the sooner you will begin doing step work, which will encourage you to get comfortable talking to another addict openly and honestly about your journey from active addiction into recovery. Please contact us for more information on support in recovery.