Peer based recovery support is when you’re able to lean on people for support, and those people are your peers. In other words, they’ve struggled with similar issues and can offer advice that’s worked for them.
Sometimes, even if they don’t have all the answers for you, it can be helpful just to talk to someone who actually understands what it’s like to be fighting a battle like alcoholism.
All of the well-meaning friends and family members and co-workers in the world, if they have no idea what it’s like to be addicted, can’t really connect to an alcoholic in the same way as someone who has fought the same battles.
And that’s why peer based recovery support groups can be super useful and helpful.
How to Find Peer Based Recovery Support Groups
There are certain organizations that offer peer based recovery support on a national level, with local clubs that you can find in your city or a nearby city/town.
The internet is a great place to find listings of local support groups. AA and NA (alcoholics anonymous and narcotics anonymous) are two of the most well-known support groups, but there are many others, too.
If you search for “Alcohol support group” followed by the name of your city or town, you should find plenty of results using a search engine like Google. But it’s a good idea to vet them a little bit, too. So, the next step would be to search the name of the organization.
If they have a few bad reviews here and there but a generally positive presence, it’s worth checking them out.
More support: 12 Sobriety Quotes To Help You When You Need It Most
Also, remember that not every group is going to be a perfect fit for everyone. If you get weird vibes at a meeting, or something just feels off, it’s okay to leave and find a different group until you find a perfect fit.
Remember, recovery is vitally important, and taking the step of going to a meeting is just one step. Sometimes, there will be set backs, or you’ll take half a step backwards, but that’s okay. It’s part of the process.
Benefits of Peer Based Recovery Support
There was a meta study in 2016 that looked at the benefits of peer based recovery support, you can find it here. This study took a look at ten different studies on this topic, and their conclusion was that more research is needed but things are looking promising.
“Peer support groups included in addiction treatment shows much promise; however, the limited data relevant to this topic diminish the ability to draw definitive conclusions. More rigorous research is needed in this area to further expand on this important line of research.”
When we’re talking about you or a loved on, the results of a study shouldn’t necessarily push you in any specific direction, but knowing that peer based recovery support shows promise is a good encouraging factor to look into your local options.
The benefits of peer based recovery support include a sense of community and showing someone that they aren’t alone. This is so important, and anyone who has felt alone while struggling with addiction can attest to that.
Sometimes, just changing up your day-to-day scenary a bit by going to a group meeting, and seeing people who are at various stages of their recovery, and hearing their stories, and being able to relate to them, and having people to talk to in a safe environment can make a world of difference.