If you have a substance use disorder or a mental health condition, one of the most powerful tools you have to help you through your recovery and beyond is your support system. But why is having a strong support system so vital? Learn more from our family therapy program experts at Insight Recovery Center by calling 828.826.1376.
What Is a Support System?
A support system is a network of people who can provide social and practical support. Your support system can be made up of peers at a treatment program, members of 12-step programs, friends, and family members, and it can offer the encouragement and guidance you need during difficult moments.
You can have personal support systems, recovery support systems, or a combination of both.
Personal support systems can include:
- Family members
- Church members or club members
Members of your personal support systems generally include people you are personally connected to in some way.
On the other hand, recovery support systems can include:
- Members of 12-step programs
- Peers at a treatment program
- Members of in-person or virtual support groups
Some people choose to turn to recovery support systems for only a short time after receiving treatment, while others can rely on them for years.
Reasons to Build a Strong Support System
No matter what kind of support system you choose to have, it can offer many benefits.
Provides Positive Peer Pressure
Addiction and relationships are linked, with peer pressure being one of the factors that can lead to an addiction. Positive peer pressure, however, can help you maintain your sobriety. Your support group can offer encouragement and can hold you accountable for your recovery.
Offers Support During Struggles
When going through a difficult moment or facing challenges that can affect your recovery, turning to your support system can help you avoid a relapse. You can get encouragement from loved ones and guidance from sponsors on how to avoid triggers and manage stress.
Allows You to Express Struggles
Having to pretend that everything is going well doesn’t help your recovery. You want to be able to express what you struggle with and how you feel from day to day. A strong support system makes this possible. Many times, just having someone listen to what you feel can help.
Offers a Judgement-Free Zone
Support systems, especially those made up of people who have been through addiction recovery, allow you to be honest without worrying about others judging you. Judgment-free support lets you work through your struggles without defensiveness.
Promotes True Accountability
A strong support system holds you accountable for your recovery process. When turning to 12-step programs, for example, honesty about progress or relapses is crucial. Accountability can help you grow through your recovery process and encourages you to speak about your substance use disorder in a healthier manner.
Addiction and Relationships: How to Build a Support System
It is a good idea to involve your family in your recovery process so that you can include them in your support system. One way to do this is to encourage them to join a family therapy program.
These programs allow your loved ones to understand what addiction is while also offering tips on how they can help you as you recover.
Additionally, consider turning to 12-step programs or aftercare programs that offer group therapy sessions. You can meet people there, including sponsors, who can offer guidance.
Build Your Support System with Help from Insight Recovery Center
Going through a substance use disorder recovery process on your own can be much more difficult. Having support from loved ones and peers can ease your journey and help you maintain your sobriety.
At Insight Recovery Center in North Carolina, we offer family therapy programs as well as access to group therapy to help you build your support system. Get started today by calling Insight Recovery Center at 828.826.1376 or reaching out online.