If you’ve recently given up drugs or alcohol, you may feel as if you’ve lost your best friend. If this sounds familiar, hang in there. It’s normal to experience feelings of grief, loss and anger during recovery. It doesn’t happen overnight, but the painful emotions will eventually fade.
Grieving after Drug and Alcohol Treatment or Rehab
The recovery journey is ultimately rewarding and without a doubt, it’s one of the most important decisions you’ll ever make – but it’s also one of the most difficult things you’ll ever do.
It may seem counterproductive to grieve for something that has brought so much destruction and turmoil into your life, but drugs and alcohol have probably been your primary focus for a very long time. Now, they’re gone and you’re left with unmistakable feelings of emptiness.
Emotional Changes during Recovery
Once you begin the process of recovery, you can no longer numb your difficult feelings with drugs or alcohol. When you can’t self-medicate your troubles away, long buried feelings are bound to rise to the surface. Confronting those emotions is bound to be difficult.
Giving up Toxic Relationships
Making a decision to give up drugs or alcohol often means walking away from drug-using friends, or even cutting ties with family members when relationships turn toxic. Giving up a powerful support system of other addicts is difficult, even when you know the change is necessary for your long-term recovery.