People who try to overcome addiction know it takes time and energy. Relapse is always on the horizon, it seems, and requires planning to focus on how to avoid some triggers and navigate around others. Relapse triggers may abound, but some are trickier than others. Here is how not to be caught by surprise if any of these pop up.
It is easy to overlook the positive things in life that can be triggering. After all, how can anything positive be triggering? Many people start with addiction as a way to cope with feelings and not believing they will continue long into years and even decades of substance abuse. Positive events and changes in life are often triggered because it is hard to cope with good things at work (promotions, change of job), to routine shifts, and even personal relationship highs like engagements or weddings. Celebrations often mean alcohol is served or there are people who are triggering at the events. Maybe it is easier to be swept away into the celebration and not think about it until you realize you are struggling with a trigger. It is not uncommon to find people wrestling with difficult situations that normally feel happy to others, but trigger fear of relapse for those in recovery.
Routine (Yet Not)
Getting into a routine is difficult because everything has changed. When a person is going to celebrate, they prepare themselves so they don’t get too far off course. A routine of being in something normal can be triggering because the desire to go back to what’s comfortable from the old life triggers fear of relapse. Recovery is not normal (yet) but the old way of doing things was not good, either. Trying to start life over again and get into a new mindset takes adjustment and time.
Even if they support you and your journey forward, there are high-stress situations that trigger a relapse. Many people in recovery are able to thank family but they may not always agree with everyone and find it triggering to be around them. Most people who struggle with addiction come from complex backgrounds with unhealthy family dynamics. Addiction is an escape or a way to feel control so they feel triggered being around them. The goal is to work with the family as a whole to combat this negative way of doing things so it is not so intrusive to recovery and feels healing.
The Last Resort wants to help you navigate recovery without feeling too triggered by what should feel safe. We are here for you to support the journey and share what we know about addiction so you can learn to manage recovery well. Call us to find out more: 512-750-6750.