Solitude is not loneliness, but an opportunity to recharge your brain without energy-draining distractions constantly demanding attention. Solitude can also increase your productivity, improve concentration, and provide you with the time necessary to rediscover yourself. It lets you consider several solutions to problems that have been nagging you without interference from daily life interruption. Defining loneliness is difficult because it is such a subjective feeling usually accompanied by other powerful emotions such as anxiety, depression or panic. Further complicating the concept of loneliness is the fact that many people say they feel alone even when surrounded by family and friends.

When individuals feel isolated, they may struggle to find the motivation and strength to continue their recovery. The emotional weight of loneliness can lead to feelings of hopelessness and despair, making the recovery process seem insurmountable. Additionally, without a support system, individuals may lack accountability, increasing the risk of relapse.

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One important and effective way to combat loneliness is to learn to become your own best friend. Increasing your self-esteem and self-confidence will help you become more comfortable being alone, and will attract more positive people into your support network. Making amends can lead to rebuilding old relationships that are positive for your recovery.

  • Sponsorship is when one person who has completed the steps and has a reasonable amount of time sober assists another alcoholic or addict through their recovery.
  • If you’re taking the time to listen to others and reach out to others when they need it, you’re also connecting, which helps remove the emotional detachment of being lonely.
  • Using drugs or alcohol feels like an escape where you don’t have to deal with your emotional pain and loneliness.
  • And we learn to keep ourselves occupied – solo – for hours on end, without the need for connection and reassurance from parents or caregivers.

You can relate to each other’s stories, and you can work through the toughest parts together. In 12 Step groups these triggers are referred to by the acronym HALT; this stands for hunger, anger, loneliness, and tiredness. If people feel lonely they can start to question the value of life in recovery. They may start to think back to the time when they were not lonely and begin missing their drinking or drug friends. People often equate being alone with loneliness, but they are not the same thing.

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Addiction recovery is a difficult journey, and sometimes it can also feel like a very lonely one. Many of those in the addiction recovery process often report that they feel lonely and isolated. The worst part of being lonely is that it can sometimes mirror how you felt while you were struggling with addiction. Substance abuse is often the way people deal with feeling lonely and depressed.

loneliness in recovery

Beyond that, these all aid your recovery by giving you a challenge and a sense of purpose. At the moment, we’re all under quarantine from the coronavirus and that might put a damper on meetings in your area. If that’s the case, you may be able to connect with your group digitally. A lot of meetings are now being held on Zoom, Google Hangouts, and other platforms.

How Common Is Chronic Loneliness?

Unfortunately, you may self-isolate with all these new changes because you feel awkward around others. However, you can take crucial steps to fight off loneliness in your addiction recovery to prevent relapse. Recovery from a substance use disorder is a challenging process, and it can be lonely at times. You may feel isolated and disconnected from those you once spent time with.

We do not accept or pay any fees or payments for behavioral health referrals. First, it’s important to accept the things you’ve done rather than hide from them. The thing that drove you to use substances in the first place – avoidance – only exacerbated SUD. It’s important that you face what you’ve done in the past, as well as your current situation, and take accountability.

Reframe Loneliness

Apologizing to hurt people will not always restore the relationship, but it will help you feel less shame and heal. Those people who are dealing with loneliness will usually be lacking in social support. This means that they are at a great disadvantage when it comes to managing day to day living. Our treatment philosophy is based loneliness in recovery on a comprehensive and integrated approach to addressing all issues related to substance use and mental health disorders. We leave nothing to guesswork as we utilize therapeutically proven, evidence-based clinical practices. We place superior patient care as our highest priority and offer them all-inclusive treatment services.

There are many individuals who appear to be content and happy even though they do not spend a lot of time with other people. There are then those people who spend a lot of time in the company of others yet still experience intense feelings of loneliness. It seems to be the experience of a lack of connectedness with other people that is the real problem and not the absence of other people. Loneliness, while a formidable challenge, is not insurmountable.