Many of us struggling with addiction have developed unhealthy patterns of communication that have caused us to operate within our relationships in very destructive ways. The toxicity of our relationships can contribute to our depression, anxiety and other mental health issues. It can fuel our addictive patterns because we seek an escape from the conflict of our tumultuous relationships. Sometimes we use to distract ourselves from our feelings of anger, anxiety and sadness, feelings that we aren’t yet able to resolve with healthy communication.
The recovery process helps us to learn communication skills that can greatly improve how we function within our relationships. We become better able to handle conflict and to express our emotions. We are driven by the goal of inner peace and interpersonal harmony, rather than a need to try to avoid our pain. The peace and clarity we find in recovery enable us to have relationships that are healthier and more balanced. We’re able to prioritize meaningful, honest connection over our fixation on getting high.
When we’re using, we tend to have certain communication styles that are particularly unhealthy. Many of us shut down completely and become silent. We retreat inwards. We don’t resolve our conflicts, and they are left to fester and worsen with our inattention. All of the difficult emotions surrounding our conflicts don’t go away when we don’t work on them, they simply are compounded and exacerbated. The bitterness, resentment, anger and disappointment get stronger over time. Our relationships suffer. We turn to our unhealthy coping mechanisms, often our addictive substances and behaviors, to give ourselves some relief. We find, though, that escapism doesn’t solve the problem, it just adds more layers of hurts to be addressed and issues to be resolved.
Another unhealthy communication style we turn to is reactivity. Recovery helps us learn how to process our emotions within ourselves and communicate them with others in healthy ways. We learn how to foster an inner peace that enables us to handle conflicts with the goal of resolution rather than lashing out in hurt and anger. We’re taught to listen to ourselves, to the inner voice of our intuition. We learn to pay attention to our emotions and to the triggers that affect us, and the more we can connect to ourselves in healthy, positive ways, the more we’re able to have healthy connections with others. We learn how to stay calm rather than react out of anger or anxiety. We learn how to listen to other people and respect their feelings. We become better able to voice our needs and establish healthy boundaries. The recovery process enables us to learn the necessary communication skills to have healthy, happy relationships.
Take advantage of the various kinds of therapy we offer as part of our treatment programs. Call 888-570-7154 for more information.