The Dangers of a Weak Support Network

Any treatment facility will emphasize the importance of a strong support network. This support can make or break the success of your early recovery. Your treatment program should foster the chance to create connections with other clients in your program. 

Take these connections with you when leaving treatment. Even if you live across the country, a simple text or phone call goes a long way. These connections will strengthen your support network and your recovery as a whole.

The lack of a strong support network threatens recovery. It is great to have supportive family and friends who will listen and support recovery. Unfortunately, there is only so much they can do. A strong support network allows you to confide in people who have gone through similar experiences, are in recovery themselves, or can generally understand you more. You should continue growing your support network after treatment as well. 

Programs at the Lakehouse Recovery Center will help you grow your network. That network can make all the difference in your recovery journey.

Benefits of Peer Support and Networks

The National Library of Medicine defines peer support as the “process of giving and receiving nonprofessional, nonclinical assistance from individuals with similar conditions or circumstances to achieve long-term recovery from psychiatric, alcohol, and/or other drug-related problems.” 

Peer support allows clients to bond, learn from each other, and refine the coping skills they learn in treatment. Going through therapy and treatment is just as important. The routine of weekly therapy or biweekly support group meetings is highly beneficial for recovery. Remember that support networks can be best for the days you just need to vent. Support networks can help save you when you least expect you will need saving.

How you seek support should work best for you. Some find solace in attending regular meetings like Alcoholics Anonymous, Narcotics Anonymous, and even Dual Recovery Anonymous. Programs like these are all over the country and are easy to find and attend. Groups like these are just one form of support network. The benefits of group support like this include:

  • Practicing self-acceptance of your illness and yourself 
  • Provide a strong sense of emotional support 
  • Learning new skills or coping techniques 
  • A safe space to vent and truthfully express how you feel 
  • Motivation to continue working towards maintaining recovery 
  • Reminding you that you are not alone in your journey to recovery

These are just a few benefits you can experience from support networks and groups. If you are suffering from addiction or Substance Use Disorders, you can learn more about the benefits of support networks by seeking treatment today.

The Problem With Weak Support Networks

A strong support network is beneficial to recovery, while a weak support network can be detrimental to recovery. Without a strong support network, people have no one to lean on. Addiction is a very isolating disorder. Time spent alone can lead to overthinking, negative emotions, and ultimately relapse. 

Having a strong support network is about being able to pick up the phone last minute to vent negative feelings. Sometimes people just need a soundboard, especially when intrusive thoughts cloud judgment. Strong support network members help you remember what you are working so hard to maintain.

Additionally, loneliness leads to substance use. Drugs or alcohol provide comfort when you are coping with feeling alone or even unloved. Surrounding yourself with like-minded people prevents that loneliness. Not having a support network increases these lonely feelings. With no one in your corner, you will be more likely to experience relapse. 

The danger of relapse after being in recovery for a while is the risk of overdose. Your body finally becomes so accustomed to not having that particular substance in it that one lapse becomes too much for it to handle. You should not reach out to people from your past to ease loneliness. Connecting with other people suffering from addiction but not in recovery is just as harmful as having a weak support network. A support network should always build you up, never tear you down.

Building a Strong Support Network

A great way to build a strong support network is through virtual treatment programs. At Lakehouse Recovery Center, our virtual outpatient program (IOP) was created as a necessity during the COVID-19 crisis. Yet, many continue to benefit from the opportunity to seek treatment from the comfort of their own homes. 

Through our virtual program, we can provide state-licensed and accredited levels of care for Substance Use Disorders and dual diagnoses. These programs offer group therapy and the chance to connect with others seeking treatment. You can grow your support network from the comfort of your home and your recovery will be better off for it.

If you or someone you love is suffering from addiction, seeking treatment is the first step to take. Prioritize creating connections during your treatment, so that upon entering recovery you have a strong support network to lean on during your darker days. Remember that with this new age we are living in, there are no more geographical limits to seeking treatment. To learn more about the importance of strong support networks, the dangers of weak networks, and virtual programs, reach out to Lakehouse Recovery Center today. 

Building strong support networks is essential for maintaining long-term recovery from active addiction. Those networks can be created before and after addiction treatment. At the Lakehouse Recovery Center, group therapy is the perfect time to bond with fellow peers. Furthermore, thanks to virtual outpatient programs, these connections can be made from the comfort of your home. Unfortunately, weak support networks can be detrimental to your recovery. For that reason, you need to surround yourself with like-minded individuals in recovery. Together you can learn new skills, stay inspired to maintain recovery, and support each other when you are down. If you or someone you love is in recovery and struggling to create a strong support network, consider researching local support groups or reach out to Lakehouse Recovery Center at (877) 762-3707. Our trained staff can start you on your path to recovery and offer resources for maintaining recovery long-term.