Ride the Rollercoaster---Dealing with Feelings in Early Recovery

By Brian Gamarello - Clinical Director, Relevance Recovery

Dealing with the Emotional Rollercoaster in Early Recovery

The emotional rollercoaster can be treacherous in early recovery but there are things that the individual can do to make the ride easier including:

* Attendance at a recovery group can be a great way to get support and advice during the early months of recovery. Here the newly sober individual can spend time with other people who have dealt with same challenges. Not only will they find support but also practical advice.
* Regular attendance with a 
therapist or addiction specialist can help the individual to talk about their problems and learn new ways of dealing with strong emotions.
* Guilt can be extremely destructive in early recovery. The most important thing is to focus on the future and not on the past. The fact that the individual is putting their addiction behind them means that they are on the right track. Once the person has made it through early recovery they can then start thinking about making amends. They have the rest of their life do this. Guilt is one of the main relapse triggers so it should be avoided.
* Medical advice should only be taking seriously if the person giving it is qualified to do so. If people are concerned about their emotional or mental health they should speak to a professional. It could be that they have an undiagnosed mental health condition. They will only be able to resolve this situation by getting the proper medical treatment. Failure to do so could be putting their recovery in jeopardy.


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