It wasn’t long ago when the world lived without the Internet. However, now that most people have smart phones, iPads, and laptops, it’s a wonder how we can live without these things. And because the Internet is far-reaching and what seems like an infinite source of information, it can be a significant tool for the recovering addict.
In fact, there is not only the opportunity to acquire information about addiction, certain drugs, and the effects of withdrawal, but there are also online support groups, blogs, chat rooms, message boards, and social networking sites all devoted to the recovery of addiction.
The following is a list of online resources that may be useful to anyone who uses the Internet as a major tool in their recovery:
Think of a 12-step meeting, only instead of actually being in a room with other recovering addicts, you’re spending time with them virtually. By using voice chat, participants can hear one another and talk to each other as though they were in the same room. Those who do not have microphones can use their keyboard to type their messages on a screen. Online meetings can be found for those members of Marijuana Anonymous and Narcotics Anonymous.
SMART Recovery is a path to sobriety that is secular and scientifically based. They also provide regular online meetings based on their principles. SMART Recovery uses non-confrontational yet motivational methods which strive to change behavior as well as unhealthy thoughts of those who are still using drugs and alcohol. Those who attend SMART Recovery meetings, whether online or at a local community meetings, learn recovery methods that have been used in evidence-based addiction treatments. SMART Recovery uses therapies such as Motivational Interviewing (MI), Cognitive Behavioral Therapy (CBT), and Rational Emotive Behavior Therapy (REBT), which have all been success in creating change in clients. SMART Recovery emphasizes four points in the process of recovery: Building Motivation, Coping with Urges, Problem Solving, and Lifestyle Balance. These are used in combination with the various therapeutic method listed above.
Social Networking Sites
Most people are familiar with Facebook, a site that connects people and allows them to share posts, pictures, videos, and anything that may be a look into one’s life. There are sites like this, those that connect people and allows them to post, but specifically oriented to recovery. For instance, myRecovery.com is a free social networking community and resource center for the recovery community. In addition to being able to share anything about one’s life and successes in addiction treatment, the site offers a wealth of recovery tools, including videos, audio files, and a 12-step meeting search tool. Another social networking site is Recovery Social Network. The aim of this site is to create an online community of recovering addicts in order to facilitate sobriety in all its members. Lastly, 12Step.org is a resource tool that lists other social networking sites related to recovery.
If you’d like to begin a recovery-oriented conversation with someone and not sure how to do it in the “real world”, you might be able to find that opportunity online. There are a number of chat rooms online that are specifically for those in recovery. Chat rooms provide an opportunity for people to connect in real time through the use of a computer. To join a chat, a person simply needs to choose a chat room to enter. There may be certain chat rooms devoted to various recovery-related topics. Users type a message and submit it by hitting “Enter”. Once sent, everyone in the chat room can see the message and choose to respond. It is similar to having a face-to-face conversation with others. Some chat rooms include 12StepMe, Harm Reduction Network, Marijuana Anonymous Online, NA Chat, NA Chatroom, NA Recovery, and Recovery Chat.
For those who have busy lives and yet who struggle to find a community of men and women who are sober, the above resources might be useful. Keep in mind, however, that if you’re seeking addiction help, these resource won’t provide treatment. They are best used to gain access to a community of those who are in recovery.
If you are reading this on any blog other than Transcend Recovery Community or via my RSS Feed, it is stolen content without credit. You can find me on Twitter via @RecoveryRobert Come and visit our blog at http://TranscendRecoveryCommunity.com/blog