There are several professions within the world of addiction recovery. Most people know about addiction counselors, therapists, and other clinical professionals. However, another profession many are unaware of is that of a sober companion. Some people employ the help of a sober companion to help themselves or a loved one transition from treatment to recovery.
Staying sober after leaving treatment can be difficult. Learning about and understanding what a sober companion does is a great way to determine whether you would benefit from one in your recovery. Continue reading to learn more about sober companions today.
Millions of people across the United States struggle with addiction, whether it be substance use disorder (SUD) or behavioral addiction. Recovery is possible through treatment, but seeking treatment is only the first step. Sobriety is a process that lasts a lifetime. While that may seem daunting, it does not have to be when you have the proper support system.
Your need for a sober companion may depend on several factors. That includes what your post-treatment support system looks like and whether you will be living alone after treatment. Many people navigate life post-treatment well enough with the help of a few friends, family members, and peers. However, others may benefit from more consistent, one-on-one support.
What Is a Sober Companion?
Upon leaving an addiction treatment facility, you will face many new challenges. You may have learned coping skills and techniques during your time in treatment, but recovery is when you must implement them. This transitional period is bound to come with some growing pains. Luckily, a sober companion can be just what you need to survive them.
A sober companion is an individual who works with clients who have left a treatment facility or are in recovery. Their primary goal is to help their clients maintain their hard-earned sobriety. That includes helping them abstain from substance use, attending meetings, and establishing other healthy routines.
Additionally, sober companions typically prepare their clients for their departure. They do this by helping clients find a sponsor, completing a final assessment, and recommending other services or resources to help them maintain recovery.
Whether you employ the help of a sober companion for a few short weeks or several months, they can help you navigate the awkward transitional period of life after treatment. It is important to remember that addiction is a chronic, lifelong condition. Learning how to live with it without relapsing is essential.
The Importance of Companionship
It is not surprising that an essential component of this line of work is providing companionship. The achievement of recovery is something beautiful that must be celebrated. However, it can also be one of the most challenging times in your life.
Individuals who lack emotional support from friends and family can find companionship from sober companions. Isolation is dangerous to individuals new to recovery. Any service that lessens feelings of isolation can help with maintaining recovery long-term.
Are There Different Kinds of Sober Companions?
The type of sober companion services you would most benefit from depends on your situation. For example, if you return home alone and are estranged from family or friends, you may benefit from live-in sober companions. In addition to ridding your home of drugs, alcohol, or substance use paraphernalia, they may even be able to help you rekindle those estranged relationships.
Other people may benefit from services on an on-call basis. Like a sponsor or accountability partner, sober companions can be a trusted confidant in your recovery journey. However, the services they provide vary greatly. Sober companions may provide consistent monitoring services, take measures to help you develop healthier lifestyle changes, and offer alternative solutions to managing triggers, cravings, or negative feelings surrounding sobriety.
Who Can Become a Sober Companion?
While many sober companions are fellow individuals in recovery, anyone can enter this field. Individuals who begin working with others in recovery may be considered peer support workers. These individuals have successfully achieved and maintained recovery and can offer personal advice to prospective clients.
Some of the ways peer support workers can help their clients include:
- Advocating for people in recovery
- Providing resources
- Mentoring and setting goals
- Administering programs or leading recovery group meetings
- Offering other addiction counseling services
Risks of Relapse
Another reason to employ the use of sober companions services is to prevent the risk of relapse. With a chronic condition like addiction, relapse is common. A relapse can occur when you least expect it, but it is vital to avoid dwelling on the fact that it occurred. Instead, individuals should concentrate on why it happened and what to do next to prevent another relapse.
Sober companions can help reduce the risk of relapse. However, if one does occur, they can help you navigate through its aftermath. There is no sure way to prevent relapse during early recovery, but a sober companion is one service to consider.
Have you recently left an addiction treatment facility? Are you currently struggling to cope with the many challenges of life post-treatment? If you answered yes to either of these questions, you could benefit from the help of a sober companion. Sober companions are individuals who help with the transition from treatment to recovery. Many of them are in recovery themselves. A sober companion may be live-in or work on an on-call basis. However, in either scenario, they provide companionship, emotional support, and an array of other services to those new to recovery. Talk to a professional today to learn more about the benefits of sober companionship. If you require treatment, call NorthStar Transitions at (303) 558-6400.