Rebuilding Friendships After Rehab: Will Holiday Traditions Be Different Now?

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

The process of going through rehabilitation and treatment for an addiction to drugs and alcohol can change many aspects of your life, including relationships, traditions, and how you interact with others.

Once you are in recovery for an addiction, it is important to make decisions that protect your recovery at all costs. This requires carefully examining what your life may have been like before entering treatment and making proactive changes to building an environment for yourself that positively builds your sobriety and choices in recovery.

One crucial aspect of maintaining recovery is the friendships you have and activities you choose to participate in with others. Are the friends you had previously positive role models and strong supporters of your recovery from addiction?

Do the activities that you choose to participate in with your friends help support your recovery or do these choices hinder your desire and decision to maintain sobriety? While these questions are difficult to ask, it is important to reflect on this in order to make better choices that support your recovery.

Supporting Friendships

Some friends may never change or understand what is necessary for you in order to stay in recovery and maintain your sobriety. Understanding this can be helpful in letting go and knowing that your life is dependent on your recovery at this point.

Having friendships that support your recovery is essentially having friends that are helping you stay alive, and this perspective is crucial when it comes to rebuilding and restoring relationships after your rehab.

Young couple looking upWhile making new friends and beginning new traditions that support your recovery is not an easy feat, this is definitely something that is a necessary foundation to a life-long recovery from addiction.

Begin practicing while you are in rehab and under the care of professionals who better understand your situation and the pressures that you may be facing.

Be selective about who is in your life and chose to build friendships in a manner that keep your recovery as a top priority through every season of life.

Community Discussion – Share your thoughts here!

If you have been in recovery for sexual addiction, was medication part of your treatment? If so, how did this help you in your recovery journey?


Crystal Karges photo

Crystal Karges

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 24, 2015
Published on AddictionHope.com