Sober living houses are havens for people who are in recovery from addiction. It is important to understand that recovery is a key word here. People who are in recovery have managed to get themselves free of the substances to which they are addicted. Before they move into a sober living house, they will almost certainly have finished a course of treatment and therapy in a rehab facility and will have been free of drugs or alcohol for a considerable time.
What Is a Sober Living Home?
Many people who worry about having one of these homes in their neighborhood are ill-informed about the nature of these facilities. They may perceive these facilities as types of communes in which people with addiction congregate to carry on getting high. The reality is the exact opposite. Sober living homes are a safe haven that allow people in recovery to adjust to living in the community as part of their recovery process.
All sober living homes have a ban on residents taking drugs or alcohol. Most use random testing to ensure that residents are sober. Any resident who breaches the sobriety rule must relinquish their place in the facility. What all this means is that a sober living home is less likely to have drugs and alcohol present than the average family home.
Residents of Sober Living Houses
The residents of sober living houses come from all social strata and all kinds of backgrounds. The term “halfway house” is sometimes used to describe sober living homes, but many addiction treatment specialists prefer not to use this term. Halfway houses were originally used to help rehabilitate those who had been incarcerated.
The use of the term to describe sober living homes can have a negative impact on other people living in the area. Residents of sober living houses are people who are fully motivated and committed to living normal, healthy lives.
Although some of them may have run into trouble with the law in the past as a result of their addiction, the vast majority of them are not criminally minded. In fact, their determination to become productive citizens means they are often the most reliable, trustworthy and diligent people in the neighborhood. Far from being a threat, many residents of sober living houses make positive contributions to the locality.
Some residents choose to move into a sober living community because their home environment may be unstable for any number of reasons. They may feel they need extra time to build up enough strength before returning home, or they may use sober living homes while they find a new place to live. Research has shown that living environment can have a huge impact on a person’s ability to remain sober after rehab.1
Addiction is a chronic illness, not a lifestyle choice.2 Those who suffer from it need all the support they can get to help in their recovery. Sober living homes can play a major part in this process. People who live nearby should have no fears about sharing their neighborhood with people who only want to get better.