Most people in early sobriety are overwhelmed by the depth and intensity of emotions they experience. You feel intensely high on life one minute and in the depths of despair the next. If you feel angry or afraid or anxious for any reason, you may feel consumed by these emotions. This time of deep and overwhelming feelings is often described as an emotional rollercoaster.
There are many lessons for recovering alcoholics and addicts to learn. An ongoing lesson that you may have to learn and relearn is how to relate to your family without the influence of drugs or alcohol. In most cases, you don’t get to choose your family. Whether you see them frequently or only occasionally, dynamics that go on between families can cause extremely volatile emotions. Uncontrolled emotional reactions can be a dangerous trigger and can lead to cravings for any substance that can change your mood or numb your pain.
What are the benefits of getting sober? Some would say that the only thing 12-step programs promise you is a day of sobriety. For anyone who has struggled to get sober or stay sober, being able to stay away from a drink or a drug for an entire day is no small feat. You might even say that being able to be sober is a miracle.
Battling addiction and going through a period of treatment to get into recovery represent major milestones in your life. You have experienced more than the average person and yet, when it’s time to rejoin the sober world, you may feel like an outcast, somehow stigmatized by your past. Re-entering society and becoming a productive and contributing member will be your next challenge, but one that will be rewarding and helpful for your continuing sobriety.