“You can’t choose your family, but you can choose your friends.”
This much is true, you cannot choose with whom you share blood. Family, however, are people who care about your well-being, they support you, and they enjoy spending time with you (and visa versa). Whether you have lost family or you have chosen to displace yourself from them, the holidays are always a hard time for those who have braved their lives of addiction and find themselves without a traditional family unit. However, you can totally build your own definition of the word family and therefore you can pick and choose who will belong in yours. It’s daunting and scary but there is such beauty in creating connections with people who just get you, addiction and all.
You may have heard that addiction is a family disease, but what can be said about those who no longer have a family, in the traditional sense of the word. It is believed that most addicts can’t recover without support from loved ones. Are those without a family doomed to cycle through addiction over and over?
Though you can’t help where you’ve come from, you do get to choose where you are going – and who is lucky enough to come along for the ride. Here are a few things to help remind you that family can be anything you want it to be.
Change Your Perspective
Forget everything you’ve come to know about what makes a family what it is. You can miss out on having a pretty rad family if you put strict limits on who those people can be. As you move forward in your journey, realizing that family is not limited to blood relations will be instrumental to your recovery.
Accept Your Past
Growing up as or with an addict you may have thought to yourself, ‘I just wanted to feel normal and have a normal family.’ As long as you keep meditating on what you don’t have in terms of a traditional functional family, the less time you will have to focus on creating and nurturing the positive relationships that you do have.
Just Say Yes
Though it is not recommended to start any serious or committed relationships – platonic or otherwise – within your first year of recovery, having a healthy social life is key to finding those special people that will make up your little family unit. Addiction is a very solitary disease, so when someone invites you to hang out your immediate reaction will be to say, no thank you. Challenge yourself to push out of your comfort zone from time to time and get out there and be social. Your “family” will find you if you are open to being found.
If you or a loved one is ready to conquer an addiction to drugs or alcohol, recovery is possible. Recoveryas.com can give you or your loved one the resources necessary to make a turnaround into lifelong sobriety. Call 1 (877) 968-6283 and we will locate a facility offering the recovery treatments you need, all at no charge to you.
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