AA Meetings | XL Drug Rehab

What to Expect During Your First Year of Recovery

Posted on 12. May, 2016 by in Addiction, Alcohol & Drug Abuse, Therapy


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Beating an addiction is a lifelong process, but the first year of sobriety will almost always be the hardest. This is why everyone who is struggling with substance abuse should take some time to research what they can expect in those first few months. Meeting these challenges head on will drastically reduce one’s risk of relapsing.

Some Form of Depression

Not every addict experiences depression during the first few stages of sobriety, but there will definitely be some major mood swings. When an individual is no longer drinking heavily, they will need to learn how to cope with everyday stressors without alcohol in their system. Over a short period of time, their body and mind will physically begin to change.

Extra Free Time

Most addicts will also find themselves with more free time than they know what to do with, and that can be a dangerous thing. Instead of mulling over one’s past, it is important to create a completely new daily routine that is based on healthy choices. This is why many people who are going to AA meetings also explore new hobbies or start a fitness routine.

Confused Family Members and Friends

In many cases, those who are going through recovery will find themselves dealing with family members and friends who are unsure of how to act or what they can do to help. Others will be bombarded with suggestions or even temptations from these parties. The best way to avoid this is to fully explain one’s sobriety process. Some people respond well to constant support while others need time alone to work through their own feelings.


Temptations are going to be a simple fact of life for a recovering addict. One major component of the AA program is recognizing where these temptations are going to come from and having a plan of action to beat them. For some, a sponsor or close friend is the most effective way to do this. Even with a strong base of support, however, everyone needs to have a thorough and well-constructed relapse plan in place.



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