The Journey to Recovery: How You May Feel When Deciding to Enter Treatment for Addiction

It started one Friday night with friends, having fun and cutting loose.  Over time, the fun turns to a feeling of hopelessness, as you become devoted to feeding your addiction.

Making the decision to enter treatment for addiction is an incredibly courageous and life-altering choice. It’s a momentous step on the path to recovery, one that is often marked by a complex mix of emotions, fears, hopes, and uncertainties.

Fear is a common emotion that grips individuals contemplating addiction treatment.

The fear of the unknown is real, and you think about detoxing, withdrawal symptoms, and the challenges that come with confronting the reasons why you may have turned to substance use in the first place.

Anxiety often goes hand in hand with fear.

It is natural to worry about how your life will change during and after treatment. You will most likely lose friendships as you change the way you spend your time. Your routine will be different, and you will likely struggle to find one that works for your new life without addiction. You may wonder how you will cope with your new life and the unknown may be scary.

As you pull yourself from the fog of addiction there will be times when you feel a profound sense of shame and guilt. As your mind clears, you may feel ashamed of the behaviors you exhibited while using as you realize the harm you have likely caused to yourself and those you care about. You may also feel a sense of shame and guilt around the complete loss of control over your life. When you finally reach the decision to enter treatment, all these feelings may be at the forefront of your mind.  It is important to remember that it takes courage to confront your past actions and know that these actions do not have to define you. This inner struggle can be an emotionally taxing process.

A glimmer of hope and possibly a sense of relief might be bundled with your fear and shame. Treatment may be a beacon of hope that signals your desire for a better life. It’s a chance to break free from the cycle of addiction, to regain control of your life as you begin to build your future. Hold on to the hope, it can provide the motivation you might need as you take those first steps into treatment.

The path toward your decision to enter treatment is rarely one that lacks those “life” twists and turns. You may struggle with ambivalence – a mixture of desire for change and the fear of it. You may be uncertain about whether you will be successful in the treatment process. The commitment needed to change may feel daunting and the ambivalence you feel may make the decision process feel overwhelming and difficult.

Resistance is another common emotion you may feel when thinking about entering treatment.

It’s not uncommon to feel a deep resistance to the actions needed as you work to change the ‘who’ you know yourself to be now and to give up the coping mechanisms that have become so familiar. The substances and accompanying behaviors you have relied on, have been your way of coping with life’s challenges. Making the choice to let them go for a healthier life can be daunting. Don’t let this resistance create a roadblock for your seeking treatment.

Despite the challenges and uncertainties, the thought of treatment and a new life may also bring you a sense of optimism and determination. Nurture the belief in your ability to recover and harness the determination that you will do what it takes for your sobriety. Optimism can be a powerful driving force throughout the journey of your recovery.

Once you’ve made the decision to enter treatment, you may experience a sense of relief. You’ve carried the weight of secrets and shame for a long time, there can be an enormous sense of relief as you release that weight from your shoulders.

The decision to enter treatment for addiction is a complex and deeply emotional process.

It involves confronting fear, shame, and uncertainty while holding onto hope, determination, and optimism. Make sure you take the time to acknowledge and validate your feelings, they are a normal part of the recovery journey.

Remember, seeking help is a sign of strength and courage.  You can lean into the hope for a healthier and happier life, it is there waiting for you just beyond your addiction. With the right support, resources, and treatment, you will be able to navigate all of your emotions as you embark on the path toward a lasting recovery and a brighter future.

If you’re seeking treatment for a loved one, our family program and caring staff recognize that addiction doesn’t only affect the person struggling with substance abuse but also affects those around him or her. When creating your treatment plan, our team will place an emphasis on getting to the underlying issues that led you to addiction in the first place. We’ll work with you to understand the “why” behind your addiction to help you overcome it.    

Healing Springs Ranch, located in Tioga Texas, provides recovery support. Some of the highlights of therapy include core curriculum groups, Psychodrama, Art Therapy, Anger Management, ETT, and a Wellness Program. Residential treatment for adults recovering from substance use, addictions, and other related mental health issues. Don’t wait another day, call HSR today to get your sobriety journey started.