When struggling with addiction, one of the things that can keep us caught in its grips is how alone we feel. We are often shunned by our loved ones, and by society as a whole, who share in the stigmatization of addicts and addiction. We isolate to protect ourselves, in what is often an attempt to try to maintain the lifestyles we’ve built that feed our addictions. We retreat from our communities, families and friends. We feel rejected and misunderstood, feared, even reviled. What we often need to help ourselves break the cycle of our addiction is to feel solidarity with other people also in recovery.
When we form a connection with another addict in recovery, we can feel like we’re finally accepted for who we are. We feel understood. We feel like our lives and our stories are not shameful and to be kept secret, but instead badges of honor marking our accomplishment in defeating such a debilitating illness. We can connect with other people in our treatment centers, in support groups, in group therapy sessions, at school or in church, through community events and recovery-related programs. We form communities, sometimes groups of just a few people, that often feel like family. We can relate to one another’s struggles and empathize with each other’s difficulties. We understand each other’s stories, that are often quite similar to our own. We recognize ourselves in each other. We see our lives in each other’s lives.
Solidarity gives us a sense of togetherness so that we finally don’t feel so alone. This can give us a renewed sense of hopefulness and optimism. We find it easier to think positively. We start believing in ourselves more. When we start to have faith in our recovery, we become energetically poised to manifest recovery for ourselves. We receive the love and support of other people who are cheering us on. They provide us with encouragement when we feel ourselves faltering. They lift us up when we feel like we’re falling. Many of us have lived through both the recovery process and the painful reality of relapse. We actually know what it’s like to live with addiction. We see past the misinformation and misunderstanding that come with the stigmatization of addiction, because we’ve lived through it. We can help each other through, offering each other the advice and wisdom that can only come from lived experience.
Solidarity helps remind us that we’re not shameful, evil people who don’t deserve a second chance. With the support of other people, we see that we can in fact get through anything, even the devastation of addiction. We can heal ourselves, and solidarity plays a huge role in our recovery.
Our community of professional caregivers has personal experience with addiction and recovery. At Riverside Recovery, we’re here to provide you with the community, support and solidarity you’ve been missing, that will benefit you tremendously in your healing. Call (800) 871-5440 today for more information on our treatment programs.