You or a loved one has almost completed an addiction treatment program. Now what? Where do you go from here and how do you maintain your new life in recovery?
What is Sober Living?
Sober recovery housing provides a supportive community where you can start your new life free from alcohol or other drugs. Residents at a sober house commit to abstaining from substance use while pitching in and helping to create a safe, supportive living environment.
Living in sober recovery housing helps you develop new habits and routines, taking what you learned during drug or alcohol rehab and applying it in your daily life. This is where the rubber starts to meet the road in recovery.
Think of sober housing as your support net as you practice new skills, gain new insight, and shape your new life in recovery with other people who are possibly facing the same challenges. Sober homes provide a strong support network to help you safely navigate the tough spots and triggers you will encounter after leaving drug or alcohol treatment before returning home.
Transitioning into a sober living home can also be known as:
Sober Living Housing/Home
Also called transitional living arrangements, these are group homes for people who may need a more structured, supportive living situation than they can get at their home. There are rules that would include the maintenance of the shared living spaces, a curfew and expectations about how time is spent during the day. Typically there is a senior resident who keeps people accountable or there may be staff that stop by periodically who check on how residents are doing.
Structured Sober Living/Housing
This is a higher level of support than a typical sober living situation, typically with 24/7 supervision and licensed staff available to patients. Residents typically participate in outpatient treatment while residing in the home. There can be help with living skills like medication, time and money management.
A halfway house is similar to structured sober living but there are typically more groups and vocational training. There is an expectation that residents participate in school, work or volunteer during the day.
How Do You Find a Sober Living Home or Halfway House?
Since sober living typically follows addiction treatment, getting a referral from the treatment provider is recommended. Other referral sources may include the criminal justice system, a mental health professional, Twelve Step meeting participants, or friends and family. Whatever the source of the referral is, take a tour of the recovery facility and talk to the people living there to decide if it’s the right fit for you.
How Long Can you Stay in a Sober Living House?
The time spent in a sober living home depends on a number of factors: strength of recovery from addiction, progress on clinical milestones and the personal living situation at home. A minimum stay of 3 months is recommended but many benefit from a longer stay for sustained sobriety.
What are the requirements to get into a Sober House?
Many facilities require a minimum number of days of sobriety from drugs and alcohol but many will work with you to determine if you’re a good fit.
What is a Sober Living House like?
Sober home environments vary widely. Some are on-campus where drug and alcohol addiction treatment is provided but most are independent homes, apartments or condos. The number of residents in a home depends on the size of the home. In most sober living homes, bedrooms are shared but some do provide individual rooms. In some cases, the more senior resident will get a single room. Each home may be structured differently in terms of rules. Typically there are rules about shared living spaces and individual room maintenance, visitor hours, mealtimes, curfew and Twelve Step meeting requirements. Find out what the rules are before deciding if it’s the right recovery home for you.
Consider First Step of Sarasota’s Sober Living Facility
First Step currently owns three, two-sided townhouses on a quiet cul-de-sac for people in early recovery. The six units each have three bedrooms upstairs with a washer, dryer, kitchen, dining area and living room downstairs. The eighteen rooms are divided into twelve rooms for men and six rooms for women. They are stocked with pots, pans, dishes, etc. Water, garbage, electricity and TV cable are included in rent.
It is because of HUD funding and following their guidelines for financial eligibility that we are able to offer such affordable housing. First Step manages the complex and assures the residents are staying responsible and succeeding in recovery. Sober housing can be a big part of sustainable recovery.