The Benefits of Alumni Programs

Have you recently left a rehabilitation facility or completed an addiction treatment program? If so, you are probably experiencing a whole new set of challenges to work through. You may struggle to catch your footing as you navigate your newfound life in recovery. If this sounds like your experience, know that you are not alone, and alumni programs can help you. 

Many individuals struggle to cope with the challenges they experience post-treatment. That is why alumni or aftercare programs can be so beneficial. An aftercare program may be just what you need. When life after treatment gets tough, reach out to the professionals at your treatment facility and ask about post-treatment resources. For further treatment or support, contact us at NorthStar Transitions today.  

What to Expect From Life Post-Treatment 

Just as everyone's addiction and treatment journey is unique, so is their recovery experience. There is no sure way to know what to expect from life post-treatment, and there is only so much you can do to prepare. However, you can expect your first year of sobriety to be full of growth and self-discovery. As time goes on, you will become more equipped to handle whatever life challenges come your way throughout recovery. 

Early on in recovery, you may learn that addiction can be a very isolating condition. Therefore, having friends and family members who support your recovery is crucial. While this is true, these people may not always be able to understand what you are going through. That is why connecting with peers in recovery and professionals in the field is so important. 

Creating Connections With Fellow Alumni

Life post-treatment is a time to create more sober relationships and understand more about addiction. These relationships are crucial, especially during your first year of recovery. Some individuals can bond and maintain contact with the people they meet during treatment. Others may need to find those close bonds in other places in their community.

Unfortunately, there is much to learn during early recovery. To help you along the way, connect with other individuals in long-term recovery. The Substance Abuse and Rehabilitation journal from Dove Medical Press define peer support as "the process of giving and receiving nonprofessional, nonclinical assistance from individuals with similar conditions or circumstances to achieve long-term recovery." 

Getting involved with peer support groups increases your chances of meeting fellow individuals in long-term recovery. They can offer you meaningful advice and insights that can ultimately help you learn how to maintain your hard-earned progress. 

How Else Can You Make Sober Connections? 

While most individuals have access to support groups or other recovery resources, there may not be a support group in your area or a support group that you connect with. If that is the case, there are other options you can pursue to make sober connections. 

One alternative way to make sober connections is through social media. Web-based support groups began booming long before the COVID-19 pandemic. However, due to the pandemic, we now understand that staying connected when we can not be together physically is essential for mental health.

Using social media or other virtual recovery resources is an excellent way to connect with people without being limited by geography. For example, you may be able to stay connected through your treatment program's official social media pages or virtual alumni groups. Perhaps you find an online Facebook group of individuals looking to connect with others in recovery. Of course, meeting people online must be done cautiously, but it is nice to have endless resources without being limited by where you live. 

Another way to make sober connections is through mutual acquaintances. Friends, family members, and people in your support network may have other friends who have been in recovery longer than you. Do not be afraid to ask them for their contact information, especially if you want advice from someone in long-term recovery. 

Aftercare and Alumni Programs 

Aftercare or alumni programs are another great way to strengthen your sober network. Recovery is not always an easy process, which is why continued support is so vital. NorthStar offers an aftercare program to provide clients with a place to connect with others who understand their journey. The first few years of recovery can be challenging as you learn to adjust to life without drugs or alcohol. An alumni program allows you to seek advice, talk, and stay engaged with the NorthStar community. 

Everyone needs empathy, fellowship, and encouragement to carry on, especially when trying to maintain recovery. Aftercare programs present all this to you. Some of the other benefits aftercare programs offer include: 

  • Staying connected with a recovery community 
  • Fun, sober activities 
  • Continuous support and advice from papers and professionals 
  • A place to learn and practice new coping or relapse prevention techniques 
  • Decreased isolation and loneliness
  • The chance to share their success and help others 

We encourage you to visit our website to learn more about our alumni program and why you should consider an aftercare program today. 

The first few years of recovery can be challenging as you try to navigate life without drugs or alcohol. These challenges are typical for people who have completed treatment, but it's easy to feel alone in your struggles. Addiction is an isolating disease, and friends and family do not always understand what you are going through. Having a network of supportive individuals who understand your situation is vital. An aftercare or alumni program is perfect for creating these connections. These programs help you stay involved with a recovery community after treatment. Alumni programs help with relapse prevention, provide fellowship, and will help you feel less lonely. Call (303) 558-6400 to learn more about our alumni program. 

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