Road to Recovery: Real Life Stories From Rehab

When an individual has been regularly abusing any kind of substance he or she will typically require outside help to stop using. Rehab can prove to be an essential piece in one’s recovery from drug or alcohol addiction.

Every individual is different and will require a unique treatment plan. A rehabilitation facility is equipped with the proper resources to create effective treatment plans for its clients.

Similar to the nature of drug or alcohol addiction, each person’s experience in rehab will vary.

Below are two first-hand stories from individuals who attended rehab.

Samantha: Getting Checked-In to Rehab

I arrived at this small looking yellow building, with two large glass doors, in the center of a u-shaped driveway. Walking through the glass doors, I entered a small poorly lit room with navy carpeting and a reception desk.

The woman behind the desk was kind, but curt. She told me that a woman named Anna would be out in a moment to show me to my room and go through my belongings.

I immediately remember feeling my stomach drop, not because I had anything in my possession that I shouldn’t, but because I didn’t like the idea of a stranger going through my stuff. I knew I did not have a choice, so I just nodded and waited.

I was brought to a small room with two beds and one closet. Both beds were made, the room looked lived in but tidy. Anna asked me to place my duffle bag and purse on the bed and step back. She then dumped everything out from my duffle bag. She lifted and shook each item of clothing, opened up my toiletry bag and placed my mouthwash, shampoo and conditioner aside.

She said because my shampoo and conditioner were in bottles without labels I would not be allowed to keep them. She also said that due to the fact that my mouthwash did not appear alcohol free, that would be confiscated as well.

Anna then flipped over my brown purse so all of its contents dropped out on the bed. She looked through every single thing, opening my wallet and removing every item, sliding her fingers through every part to make sure nothing was hidden. She added my hand sanitizer to the pile with my shampoo, conditioner and mouthwash.

I remember feeling a fair amount of discomfort with a stranger going through my belongings. I knew it was part of the program, and I was so sick of fighting with people in my life that I retreated into myself.

Once she was finished, she handed me a paper schedule and told me that I needed to be in the large room on the first floor for “group.” I nodded, and she left.

I felt so many feelings, it’s hard to describe. These new people that I would soon meet in “group” would forever be part of my recovery journey. I was overwhelmed, but am so grateful I went through it, instead of escaping it.

The initial discomfort stayed with me the entire stay at the rehab facility. I did, however, learn to appreciate it — the discomfort, in a way, kept me and still does keep me on my toes.

Jordan: Overview and Insights of Rehab

I was used to the routine of rehab. The structure and rigidity of the program increasingly helped to keep my mind from wandering and distract me from my cravings. The longer my stay, the more aware I became of the importance of taking my recovery “day by day,” sometimes seconds by seconds. I had been in and out of rehabs for over three years.

Some rehabs I would complete fully, but most often I would behave in a way, or make choices, that would ultimately get me kicked out. It was not until the last successful rehab program I had attended that my mortality was illuminated.

In all honesty I had not been ready to get sober before then. Right before entering the program, I wanted to get my last high — and I wanted to make it a good one. I used a dangerous amount and combination of drugs, and instead of walking into the rehab facility, I found myself waking up in a room at a hospital.

I later became aware that I had overdosed, and was brought in, unresponsive, to the hospital. I had been assigned a room in the detoxification unit. I specifically remember the fear, exhaustion, and discomfort I felt, upon waking up. It was at that moment that I decided I never wanted to repeat that experience again.

Following four days of monitoring and intense detox, I was discharged from the hospital and continued my treatment in the last rehabilitation facility I have had to reside in.

I am now seven years and seventeen days sober. Without the combination of hitting “rock bottom,” followed by detoxification and an immediate stay at a rehab treatment facility I would certainly not be here today.

Further Resources

Though asking for help may seem challenging, drug and alcohol addiction can lead to death if left untreated. Symptom of addiction will manifest differently in different people. If there is even the slightest concern for oneself or a loved one and his or her substance abuse it is essential to seek help.

There are many options available for individuals who struggle with addiction, including 12 step or non 12 step treatment programs. Consulting a medical or psychological professional can be extremely helpful in providing proper guidance when beginning to tackle addiction.

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We believe trust, meaningful connections, and kindness are the essentials to beginning a journey in recovery. We are dedicated to providing an honest, authentic, and genuine treatment environment that gives our clients a unique opportunity for healing.

Alo House is LegitScript Certified and a Joint Commission Accredited Addiction Treatment Center.