Friends In Recovery Answered
Question 1: As a student, how do you deal with peer pressure?
The students who do best in high school or college seem to
be the ones with a driving purpose in their lives. They don’t
just drift from class to class and from activity to activity going
with the herd. They have purpose in the things they do.
Having purpose is a part of a healthy self-respect, blended
with a more realistic knowledge that the whole world isn’t
~T.S. from the Midwest
Let’s hope they have a caring sponsor and they will have to
lean heavily on their “Higher Power”.
I am going to answer this as a mother of a student, there was
anger, tears, no trust, frustration, why? I can’t answer that
other than she wanted to make friends. SO desperately in
fact she didnt see the beauty in her own self. Counselors well
anyone in fact can say just walk away be strong work the
steps. But when your 17 and lonely that is not the best advice
in the world. From the eye opener last August all I see is kids
around here drinking. Why? parents are busy uninvolved or
too involved. It is all pressure either peer or otherwise. Parents
panicked they didn’t have a genius, athlete, beauty queen,
whatever they valued at the time of birth becomes the push
for the kid. That means that the peer pressure in fact starts
at birth. Do kids stand a chance? Not without some radical
rethinking of teenage alcholism. It is fine to put them in a
group with adults, but they really cannot relate to the things
our kids are seeing today. Most of them simply want to be
loved for who they are not what their parents want them to
be. An idea might be to train younger recovering addicts
alcoholics but it would have to be an intense screening system
because for today you don’t see alot of success. They have to
want to change and that comes from the parents. You can
support them all you like, but it is not going to change the
peer pressure which today is like an atomic bomb. Old school
values need to be practiced. Family time needs to be practiced,
family counseling reexplored, I could go on and on. K today
seems happy. Is she drinking again? Probably. Sadly enough,
I cannot stage a one woman battle against it. She fought AA
meetings with adults who dont understand, friends who took
the AA meetings as a flight of fancy and others she was in
substance abuse treatment with ignoring her basically once she left Valley Hope.
You dont have to use this, but maybe it will spark a different
approach for young people. Our future looks a little bleak if
you look at the big picture. Kids today see alcohol as no big
deal, not seeing the full extent of what damage it can do.
They often times do not learn until they are well into being an
adult. There are no alateen meetings around here, she doesn’t
have a sponsor, so what exactly did I spend money on to help
her? Not even I am sure.
~A Very sad parent S.
Just advise them to stay away from “former playmates” and
find new friends that will support them. Some schools even
have AA meetings for students...Don’t forget to ask your Higher
Power to help you stay strong. God Bless you!
I am not a student anymore, but I know when I was a student
peer pressure is just as bad as our addiction. High school
kids are ruthless and can really make a person feel really bad
about themselves and life in general. They can make you
feel like even more of an outsider now that you are trying to
live a life in recovery after substance abuse treatment. Don’t let them take that from you!
Don’t let them take your new found freedom. There are other
people out there with the same issues you have and will help
you through it. Find the people in your school that will truly
be your friends, and not just want to tear you down. Talk to
them and ask them for help. Always take the next right step,
as you know more than anyone what will happen if you let
peer pressure take you back down the dark road of addiction.
I am much past the teen years, but... I have been following a
young man through his teen years now twenties. I saw so
much peer pressure put on him. Now as he is recovery he
can see that friends outside of recovery were never really
friends. Thank you to his higher power!
Question 2: I have a family member who has been to
substance abuse treatment three times. How do I NOT give
up hope for this person?
I just got my computer back online. I know this isn’t timely,
but it’s relevant. God doesn’t always give us answers, but
he always gives us grace. I always hold out hope for the
hopeless. I am not always be nice about… but I try. Folks
in AA didn’t give up hope on me. Some turned their backs,
but I had worn them out. Eventually something happened.
I only got to go to substance abuse treatment once (Valley Hope Alum APR
90) but didn’t sober up until AUG 95. Some of my friends
have died, and yet I get to be here sober. It is Grace. I do
not understand it. My little brain can’t wrap around it. I
show up at AA meetings and participate, because there
might be some guys who show up because I told him if he
showed up, he’ll get better. And then they might get it. So
can you open your hearts to God’s Grace? You might never
get an answer that you want, but you can have peace in
your own life. Go to an Al-anon meeting, because AA for
sure doesn’t have an answer to that question. God Bless.
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