What if I relapse after I quit drinking or quit using?

Relapsing after you quit drinking or using drugs is nothing to be ashamed of and should never be viewed as a failure. Relapse is, quite simply, a part of the disease of addiction. Instead of dwelling on a relapse as a negative, try to think of it as a bump in the road to recovery. Reframe it into a positive and use it as a learning experience. Always remember: It's not the slip-up that defines you; it's how you react to it. So pick yourself up, brush yourself off, and get back on the right path as soon as possible.

Some people like to think of sobriety as a learned behavior that requires practice before you master it. Like other learned behaviors, you shouldn't put too much pressure on yourself to be perfect at it right from the start. Consider this: If you decided to learn to speak Russian, would you expect to be an expert at it from day one? Of course not! You would study, practice, make mistakes, and learn as you went along. Thinking of sobriety and recovery in the same way can be a big help.

The bottom line: If you slip up, don't give up; instead, get up and try again. If you mix willingness and hope enough times, long-term recovery can and does happen.
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  • @DeanD Thank you for this, it helps me to understand what my husband may be going through and support him after his relapse last week.

    I have been educating myself and thus being able to support him in a positive way (I think it has made me a better person too), instead of kicking and screaming about it - kind words seem to have him open up to me about his internal struggle.   I can only hope and pray that he will start to make the right decisions going forward.
  • You're very welcome, @ClaudS. You may get something out of this video I made, too.

  • @ClaudS hello and welcome. thanks for sharing. i am glad that you are learning how to best support your husband in his recovery efforts. focus on you.... i think one thing all loved ones of addicts ought to work on is tuning into your wants and needs, being able to speak them, and setting and keeping boundaries. 

    recovery involves both of you working on yourselves...from there, the relationship can get better. i am sending positive vibes your way...
  • @DeanD, thank you for the video. I love the way you explained it, makes it much easier to understand that this was not a complete train smash.  I think he will also need to hear this to not be so hard on himself too.

    @dominica, I have actually for a long time blamed and been hard on myself for thinking I had pushed him in that direction and wondering where it all went wrong... was I so oblivious. 

    Some days are better than others but we talk about it, I tell him how my day was and vice versa.  The weekend I set myself goals and tasks I want to achieve during my down time, this should also clear my mind from over thinking it all.

    Thank you again for the love and support you both show so many!

  • @ClaudS you are so welcome!!

    we are rooting for YOU!
  • @PamO hi there! glad you got something out of this!! :) 
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