Finding Support Through a Difficult Holiday Season

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Contributor: Crystal Karges, MS, RDN, IBCLC Special Projects Coordinator at Eating Disorder Hope/Addiction Hope

While for many individuals, the holiday season is a time of festivities and celebration, countless people finds this time of year particularly difficult to deal with.

Many reasons can influence the tone of the holiday season, including relationships with family and friends, health conditions, current jobs and careers, and more.

Other aspects include the struggle with an addiction to drugs and alcohol. Those who may be dealing with an addiction and substance abuse might find that the holidays are triggering or difficult to manage.

If you are in recovery from addiction and substance abuse during this holiday season, it is important to know that you are not alone in your efforts to find freedom from your past.

Whether you are looking forward to the holiday season with joy and anticipation or are finding this particularly season challenging and overwhelming, connecting to support is an essential component of staying in recovery and protecting your efforts in sobriety.


While others may seem to have family and friends, you may find it harder to connect with individuals who can understand what you may be going through, especially in your recovery from addiction and alcohol. Becoming involved in a local support group in your community can be a practical place to begin when it comes to finding support through a difficult holiday season.

happy couple outside talking and looking at each other.Groups that offer free support to the community often include Alcohol Anonymous, Narcotics Anonymous and more.

These groups will allow you the chance to network with other people who are likely going through similar struggles you are facing, and this can help alleviate some of the difficulty you may be experiencing.

There are also an abundance of self-help groups and forums available online, and if you are connected to technology, this can also be a practical way to utilize support during a time of year that may be more challenging for you.

The important thing is that you do not allow yourself to isolate or alienate yourself from others who may be willing to help you. Isolation can further trigger using behaviors and make it even more difficult to maintain sobriety, while staying connected to support can give you the accountability and encouragement you need to continue on in your recovery, especially during difficult times.

Community Discussion – Share your thoughts here!

If you have dealt with depression at any point during your eating disorder recovery, what tools and resources were helpful to you for overcoming this? What encouragement or feedback might you offer to another person in recovery who is also experiencing and dealing with depression?

Crystal is a Masters-level Registered Dietitian Nutritionist (RDN) with a specialty focus in eating disorders, maternal/child health and wellness, and intuitive eating. Combining clinical experience with a love of social media and writing, Crystal serves as the Special Projects Coordinator for Eating Disorder Hope/Addiction Hope, where her passion to help others find recovery and healing is integrated into each part of her work.

As a Certified Intuitive Eating Counselor, Crystal has dedicated her career to helping others establish a healthy relationship with food and body through her work with EDH/AH and nutrition private practice.

The opinions and views of our guest contributors are shared to provide a broad perspective of addictions. These are not necessarily the views of Addiction Hope, but an effort to offer discussion of various issues by different concerned individuals.

We at Addiction Hope understand that addictions result from a combination of environmental and genetic factors. If you or a loved one are suffering from an addiction, please know that there is hope for you, and seek immediate professional help.

Last Updated & Reviewed By: Jacquelyn Ekern, MS, LPC on November 25, 2015
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