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Choosing A Sober Living Home

by Krystina Murray ❘  

The Importance Of Sober Living Homes

Sober living homes provide safety and stable shelter for individuals seeking a safe place post-rehab. Furthermore, it provides accountability, community, and connection. After inpatient rehab, which is a requirement for sober living homes, patients can apply skills gained in rehab. Alternatively, individuals who have relapsed post-rehab could benefit from attending one of these communities.

Fortunately, there are factors someone can take into account before committing to a specific sober living home. Benefits range from a feeling of independence to one of connection. Residents can still gain access to 12-Step groups and are able to work and contribute to society. Because of the value sober living homes offer, it is imperative to know how to select the one that is ideal.

What To Consider

Individuals seeking sober living homes have several options to consider based on their needs. They should consider what they are hoping to gain when living in a sober living home. Do they prefer gender-specific care? For mothers who are considering accommodations for their child, childcare and appropriate security may be helpful in making a decision. It’s important to do personal research and consider personal needs, such as amenities available in the home (furniture, washer, and dryer), proximity (schools in the area, hospitals, grocery stores, distance to gyms, relatives, churches), and location.

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Location, Location, Location

Considerations like location preferences should be taken into account. Doing research to learn about and narrow down options is an empowering step to take. Furthermore, physically visiting the sober living home is another smart step to take when making this type of decision. Having an idea of the neighborhood you would prefer can additionally help make a decision. Like rehab, individuals can travel for sober living homes, with similar benefits, such as:

  • Decreasing stressors that activate addiction.

  • Taking the experience more seriously because of distance.

  • A fresh new surrounding.

  • Access to variety.

Avoiding Shady Sober Living Homes

Just like there are shady business practices, fraudulent sober living homes do exist. News headlining Kenny Chapman’s criminal exploitation of those needing substance abuse care, and women who needed safe housing reveal the unfortunate pinpoint of the harsh reality of fraudulent sober living homes. Other fraudulent homes have sketchy practices, or very little ground rules for inhabitants. In some cases, patients can sell drugs to other patients who are trying to stay sober. Researching a variety of homes and learning about the accreditations/certifications is a great start to learning about sober living homes of interest. It may be helpful to ask yourself questions such as:

  • How long has this facility been in operation?

  • What accreditations does the facility have?

  • What standards of living does the sober living house practice?

  • Are drugs or alcohol allowed in the home? (No)

  • Do they conduct regular or monthly interviews? (This holds residents accountable for sobriety.)

Doing more research can provide needed answers to questions, or can inspire additional questions needing to be asked.

Sober Living Home Green Lights

Sober living home green lights provide patients with clean homes, a set of guidelines that limit conflict or aggressive interactions, the ability to work, prohibit the use of drugs, allow visitors on site, encourage group meetings, are not free of charge, are in good condition, and have qualified and experienced staff. For example, soberhousing.net cites the following qualifications, some of which include:

    • A neat appearance.

    • The home is safe (should be in accordance with guidelines).

    • House should be able to accommodate all residents (available room, adequate space in kitchens).

    • Rooms should have locks.

    • Residents must know how much they have to pay.

    • Residents have to know about testing and interviewing to ensure abstinence.

    • Rights to personal items.

    • Codes of conduct that encourage safety.

    • Any conflict that occur must be quickly resolved.

    • Meeting attendance of residents and their families are encouraged.

  • No romantic or sexual interests between house members.

This list is not exhaustive. Some sober living homes can offer unique services and accommodations. Doing thorough research online, calling and asking questions, and visiting the home in consideration are all steps one can take to be sure they’re making the best decision. It may also be beneficial to write down a list of wants and needs to keep on hand while asking questions. To learn more about rehab and to discover what these certain homes may offer, contact a treatment provider and get on track.

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