SURVIVE CHRISTMAS AND NEW YEAR
HELP PEOPLE IN EARLY RECOVERY
Christmas and new year, plus the few weeks immediately after when people can feel complacent, are the riskiest times of the year for relapse back to alcohol/drugs. Preparations must start in November to avoid a crisis and instead build a template for future healthy, happy christmases. Deirdre Boyd brings advice from established experts in addiction recovery.
This page offers you top recovery tips from Action on Addiction, whose patron is the Duchess of Cambridge, and whose services range from rehab to the Centre for Addiction Treatment Studies.
Simply click below to access more top tips from:
+ Mike Delaney of Bayberry Clinic, which also treats impaired professionals
+ Tessa Corner of StreetScene, who highights multicultural activities
+ Mo Dunne of Hebron Trust, which specialises in women’s issues
+ Mount Carmel in London which offers aftercare for life
+ Castle Craig Hospital in Scotland and the Netherlands.
Print-friendly advice from all 7 rehabs:
Download AddictionToday139 – Survive christmas
It might seem hard to believe, but it is 12 years since Action on Addiction clinical director Kirby Gregory contributed to Addiction Today’s first guide on getting people in early recovery through christmas. We recently sent him the original article and asked if he thought the advice needed updating – but it has withstood the test of time!
Although it is a christian festival, christmas has a huge impact on all our society. Whether you are involved directly or not, there are many implications for a recovering person.
Alcohol is a major factor in the celebrations and many people who do not usually drink to excess find themselves going way beyond their normal limits. Recovering people must recognise that this can place them in a vulnerable position, that it might be safest to avoid environments with alcohol. This might entail choosing to spend as much of the time as possible with other recovering people.
Plan to attend specific mutual-aid meetings over the holiday period – make a written plan and stick to it, otherwise “the illusion of self-sufficiency can take hold”.
Learn to use the telephone before you are desperate to make a life-saving call – call people for a chat or to see how they are getting on.
If you are round alcohol, try to have at least one person around who understands your situation and is available to support you.
And be wary of old haunts – start a new history with others in recovery.