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How Can I Facilitate the Transition Back to Work After Rehab?

Returning to work after completing a treatment program has its specific challenges, just as every part of our recovery journey does. We can be filled with trepidation, worry and self-doubt. We question how to handle the logistics and also the interpersonal dynamics surrounding the transition. Many of us are able to take time off from work for health or personal reasons, and we’re lucky to be able to return to our same position once we’re done with treatment. We feel grateful not to have to look for a new job or worry about our finances, but nonetheless, we’re still presented with some challenging things to deal with. How can we facilitate the transition back to work after rehab?

Choosing to be Open About Our Addiction

The decision whether or not to tell our employers the reason for our time off is a personal one, and it’s entirely up to us. Some of us feel as though we have to disclose that we struggle with addiction because we’ve already shown signs at work, showing up to work inebriated, missing a lot of work, falling behind on assignment deadlines, or consuming too much drugs or alcohol at a work function. Perhaps we’ve already told people at work, and word has gotten around. Some of us have been open about our difficulties all along. Others of us remain very secretive, afraid that admitting we’re addicts will mean we’ll lose our job. We’re understandably afraid that people will judge us and be unable to understand what we’re going through.

Once we finish rehab, we’re not sure how to handle these tricky workplace dynamics. Should we tell people, and if so, who should we tell? We might want to discuss it with a supervisor we trust, or with human resources, in order to cover our bases and make sure we’re getting ahead of the issue, being open, honest and transparent about it and bringing it up before things become problematic, or before we’re confronted with a work-related issue like poor performance, excessive absences or inappropriate behavior. When we handle things in an upfront manner, oftentimes we feel relieved that we got the hardest part of it out of the way, and we can go back to focusing on work.

Give Yourself Time

Returning to work can understandably be very difficult, and we want to be patient with ourselves as we undergo the transition. It’s perfectly okay to give ourselves time to acclimate to our sobriety and take time before going back to work. Check with your employer and/or human resources office to see just how much time off you can reasonably take. You may want to have some down time in between rehab and going back to work, to be around supportive loved ones, to go to meetings, to continue with therapy, and overall to make sure you’re feeling grounded and stable enough before returning to the demands of your job.

The Guest House is a welcoming and supportive recovery home where you will be met with open arms, wherever you are on your journey, without judgment or expectation.

Call 855-483-7800 today for more information.

3230 Northeast 55th Avenue Silver Springs, FL 34488