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Making the choice to go to treatment and get sober was a huge decision that took considerable time and effort. You have worked so hard. You can be proud of your journey. Not everyone with an addiction is ready for that journey, though you were.

Also, not everyone in your life will be sober. You will need to take time to think about and determine which relationships in your life are healthy and which are unhealthy. If you have a healthy relationship with someone, but that person is not sober, you will need to establish boundaries that make both of you comfortable. Be open and honest about this with your loved ones. Here are a few suggestions for creating or maintaining healthy relationships with people who are not sober.

Have Open and Clear Boundaries

Boundaries are important in recovery. Having boundaries keeps you safe. When you establish boundaries, you help to ensure that you do not end up in situations that you are simply not ready for. Work with your mental health professional to begin to establish the boundaries that are right for you.

When creating boundaries with non-sober friends or family members, it is important to have explicit conversations about the boundaries you would like to set. Many times disagreements arise when communication is not clear, and the parties involved don’t fully understand each other. Talk with your loved one about what you are comfortable with and what you no longer can be around for your safety. Be clear and firm so that your loved ones know you are serious and that you expect them to adhere to your set boundaries.

Talk About Your Goals

Talk about your goals. Your non-sober friends may not be on the same life path as you. They are not focusing on the same issues or have the same mindset. They may not even understand your treatment or how hard you worked to get to where you are today.

Your goals are an important part of your recovery. They help you to stay focused and move in the right direction. By talking about your goals to non-sober friends and loved ones, they will be able to understand your recovery and mindset better.

Establish New Sober Activities

If you used to engage in risky behavior with certain people, then you will need to find new activities to do together. It is important you do not place yourself in situations that you are just not ready for.

Finding new and fun things to do together can be exciting. Try out activities that are new to both you and your non-sober friends. Try out classes, groups, or other activities that you both have wanted to try.

Find Sober Support

Maintaining non-sober friendships is completely possible. However, you may find it comforting and nice to have support and connections with people who have also chosen a sober lifestyle. Having friendships with people who are sober can give you a chance to connect with people on similar journeys as you are on. Connecting with others in recovery can bring comfort because they understand your struggles and what it has taken to be where you are on your recovery journey.

Consider joining groups or clubs that focus on sobriety. You will be able to meet other people with similar mindsets and journeys as you.

Acknowledge Your Feelings

Always acknowledge your feelings. This is something you learned while working through treatment. When you can acknowledge how you truly feel, you can better understand why you are feeling the way you feel. Recovery is a process, and acknowledging how different situations make you feel is important in maintaining your goals and staying focused.

Continue to acknowledge how various relationships make you feel. If non-sober relationships are causing you stress or anxiety, you may need to analyze those relationships further so you can better understand those feelings.

Have an Exit Plan

Having trusting and safe relationships is important. You should always be able to trust and rely on those around you. However, it can be a safe option to have an exit plan if you ever find yourself in a situation that is not safe or healthy for you to be in.

An exit plan may look like having a ride ready if you need to leave a situation fast. Others may have people that they know they can call at any time if they need to talk through a situation.

Maintain Healthy Dynamics

If you are in a healthy relationship with someone, they will respect boundaries and want you to succeed. Whether your relationships are sober or not sober, they need to be healthy. Work with your therapist to better understand what healthy relationships look and feel like and whether your relationships are healthy or not.

Maintaining non-sober friendships and relationships is possible as you journey through recovery. Learning to create healthy and safe relationships is the key to success. Establish clear and decisive boundaries that help to keep you safe. Talk about your goals and work on finding sober activities to do with your non-sober friends. You may find it comforting to keep your support close as you work on creating safe and functional dynamics in which everyone feels comfortable. Continue working with your therapist as you determine which relationships are healthy and which are unhealthy. Here at The Guest House, we are ready to help you navigate situations that may test your sobriety and decision-making skills. You do not need to face these challenges alone. We are here to support you in every step of your recovery. Call us today at (855) 483-7800 to learn more about our treatment options and how we can support you on your journey.