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Relationships are an essential aspect of our lives. We all need to feel a sense of belonging to those around us. We all need people to lean on and receive support from during hard and scary times. If you have worked your way through recovery from an addiction, you may find that rebuilding relationships is a significant part of that journey. Addiction probably consumed your life. Substance use disorder has a way of affecting every single aspect of our lives, including the relationships that we hold most dear. Learning to rebuild trust is a great goal to achieve. The following five tips may help you start rebuilding trust and loving relationships with the people who are important to you. 


#1. Ask for Forgiveness


You probably made poor decisions while suffering from an active substance use disorder. Those decisions most likely affected your relationships. You may have broken promises, went against your word, caused stress and worry, and caused many other problems in your relationships.


Asking for forgiveness can be hard to do. You may feel that because you went through treatment and are now sober, everything should be fine. You may feel uncomfortable asking for forgiveness because it makes you feel vulnerable and even judged. Try to work through these feelings by acknowledging them and sharing what you are feeling and experiencing with your loved ones and support system. 


#2. Be Willing to Put in the Work


Rebuilding relationships can take a lot of work. Trust can take time to grow after it has been broken. Be willing to communicate, put in the effort, and think about what others need from you. Addiction may have caused you to make not-so-great choices that affected your loved ones. Now is the time to put in the effort and determine what the people close to you need to feel comfortable in a relationship with you. 


Open dialogue may help you while you put in the work. Share what you are feeling and be open to learning about your loved one’s feelings as well. It may take time, work, and energy to rebuild relationships, but it is worth it. 


#3. Reflect on What You Have Learned


Reflecting on what you have learned throughout treatment and recovery may be a great place to begin working on relationships in your life. Treatment probably taught you a lot about living a healthy life. You learned more about making healthy choices, understanding your mental health, and realized why relationships are so meaningful in your life. You may have even discovered that some relationships in your life are not healthy and may be hazardous to your sobriety. Being able to reflect on what you have learned in treatment can be powerful. 


Relationships are often multilayered and complicated. Learning how to face the dynamics of a relationship healthily can take time and energy. When you can reflect on what you have learned, you can then communicate that to others, which can help form bonds and rebuild trust. 


#4. Be Open About Your Goals


You probably have heard mental health professionals talk about goals many times. Goals are wonderful and beneficial for those in recovery and give you something to keep working towards, focusing on, and talking about. 


Create goals for the relationships in your life. Talk openly and honestly about where you would like to see the relationships headed, the steps needed to get there, and what you plan to do to achieve those goals. Creating clear and realistic goals for what you want to change in your life will help you to stay focused. 


When you were struggling with an active addiction, it may have consumed your life and affected every aspect of your life. Being open and honest about the changes you are making in your life may be beneficial in rebuilding trust with the people who are important to you. It takes time for others to see and understand the changes you are making and where you plan to take your life. 


#5. Continue to Receive Help


Don’t be ashamed about needing extra support throughout your recovery. It is normal to continue receiving support from a mental health professional in some capacity. As your loved ones see you continue to work on bettering yourself, it may help them feel more comfortable trusting you again. Trust takes time; don’t lose hope. Continue to work towards your goals and focus on your sobriety. Your relationships will flourish as you do. 


Rebuilding trust after struggling with addiction is a significant part of recovery. You know how far you have come and where you are going with your sobriety; however, it may take others time to see and trust your progress. Be open about what you have learned about maintaining a healthy lifestyle and sobriety. Talk about your goals for the relationships in your life and goals relating to your sobriety and health. Every relationship is unique and has different challenges. Focus on what your relationships need and how to get there. Try to focus on your own journey of healing and happiness. It is okay if your recovery looks different than others’ recovery. Here at The Guest House, we know every recovery is unique and needs different levels of support. We are here to help you every step of the way. Call us today to learn more about our various options and how we can support you at (855) 483-7800.