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How To Build Healthy Relationships With Others In Early Recovery

If your loved one is in early recovery, you might find it valuable to educate yourself on how to reconstruct healthy relationships with them. For many addicts and alcoholics new to the recovery process, rebuilding and maintaining all different types of relationships can be both overwhelming and challenging.

Building Healthy Relationships

The most crucial factor in having successful, healthy relationships, whether it is with family, program, significant others, peers, society, or ourselves, is balance. This is important when your loved one is early on in recovery because a lot of emotions and feelings can surface. For both your sake and your loved one’s as well, you may want to make sure they have other healthy relationships or outlets in general to turn to besides you. Showing support by being there for your loved one is great, as it plays a major role in their recovery process, but you don’t want to end up burnt out with an overload of their emotional turmoil any more than your loved one wants to inadvertently cause distress for you in your life. Not to mention, your loved one may not appreciate being overly watched and taken care of by you, as they may grow to feel smothered, causing tension between both of you. It would definitely benefit your loved one in their recovery to not only reach out to you but sober friends, substance counselors, and supports from 12-Step Meetings as well.

Be patient and understanding

Your loved one is re-adjusting to new coping skills and is in a completely different, unfamiliar mindset, so you should try your best to understand their difficulties even when it comes to the simplest of tasks. There may be times that they get depressed, agitated, or frustrated much quicker than before. Try your best to remain calm and patient with them. Healthy relationships provide the ability to talk about what both parties are experiencing. Communication is the best way to understand one another’s needs and how to meet them appropriately.

Be willing to improve and establish healthy relationships

Throughout your loved one’s use, they may have lied to, stolen from, and even hurt you in various ways. In the process of their recovery, they should begin to take accountability for their actions, make amends, and move forward with stabilizing healthy relationships between the both of you. In return, you should work on finding the willingness to forgive your loved one for the damage that their addiction caused and the person that it made them become. It may be difficult for both of you, and these things take time, but it is possible for trust to be rebuilt if both parties are open-minded and find the ability to let go of the past after some time of seeing a positive change in behaviors.

Be aware of codependency

It may feel great to have your loved one back in your life because they probably seemed like a completely different person on drugs, but you need to be conscious of your loved one becoming codependent with you and vice versa. This wouldn’t be healthy for either of you because you are both your own people and need to be sure you have some self-reliance. Your loved one especially needs this because they will need to put a great deal of focus on their spiritual recovery program and work on their own self-worth.

There are a lot of ways you can show your loved one that you will be there through their recovery process in a healthy manner. Make sure you are both working on the healthy relationships you have together one day at a time. The recovery process may not be smooth sailing, and that is okay, because it is usually the greatest things in life that we have to work hard for.

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