Addiction Treatment

5 Tips for Helping Your Friend Stay Sober

Written By:

Becky Babb

5 Tips for Helping Your Friend Stay Sober

Recovering from addiction is a journey of a lifetime requiring the support of friends, family and colleagues. Encouragement from loved ones help an individual in recovery with motivation to live free of addiction and substance abuse. The following tips can be helpful when providing support for a friend in sobriety.


Judgment can impair an individual’s ability to feel safe on the recovery journey. Criticism and negativity can impact a person’s mental state and lead to discouragement with the process. An expression of love and care for the friend in sobriety can have a positive impact.


Long-term recovery is impacted by whether the person lives in a drug-free environment. Loved ones can support recovery by removing drug paraphernalia and encouraging the individual to stay away from places which might tempt relapse. Offer help if the person is struggling to find places or people to engage with in a positive, healthy way.


Recovery has its challenges and struggles. Having a person who listens to the ups and downs as well as the victories can be healthy and encouraging for a loved one in sobriety. Active listening is more about asking questions than waiting for a chance to speak. When a person feels heard it is more likely to result in feeling connected, less isolated and increasingly likely to be successful in sobriety for the long haul.


Exercise, playing games, cooking nutritious food and other similar activities encourage healthy habits. Group sports, nights out at venues without drugs or alcohol present and opportunities to socialize in a safe environment can be very beneficial for a loved one in sobriety. Find positive, substance-free activities to do with a friend or loved one which are fun, engaging and help build a model for a new way of living without drugs or alcohol.


Recovery is a long, complicated process. Mistakes are often made so it is helpful for family and friends to understand recovery from this perspective and offer grace and gratitude for the times when things go well and when they do not. An individual in recovery needs to know friends and family will still support them even when falling down.

Avoid Relapse

The support of family and friends is critical to sobriety. Relapse is always a concern for people at any stage of recovery, especially those who feel isolated and alone. Although it is not the responsibility of loved ones to keep a sober friend or family member from relapsing, following the above tips and providing a support system whether or not the person stays sober will be helpful for long term recovery.

Last Resort offers programs to help individuals recover from addiction. If you or a loved one need support, call today at 512.750.6750 for more information about how we can help you achieve your goals.

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