I think most people would agree that trying to get addiction alcoholism drug treatment and stay clean and sober while living on a college campus is something that can be extremely difficult. I know for me, once I left the addiction drug rehab treatment center that I attended and decided I wanted to remain sober, I didn't really feel like I could go back to college and live there. That is, at least not if I wanted to stay clean and sober.
While it is true that once I was in alcohol addiction recovery I certainly couldn't have the same kind of social life, I'm not so sure anymore that it wouldn't have been possible to go back to college and remain clean and sober.
I was reading an article in The Wall Street journal that was discussing this very topic. The article discussed certain things universities are trying to put into place to make colleges a more welcoming environment to alcoholics and addicts in recovery or students who may need help with their drinking or drug use.
The article explains that a lot of universities are starting to create recovery communities. Instead of having frat parties and house parties as, essentially, the only social scene available on college campuses, a lot of these universities are trying to give sober students in addiction recovery a chance to have a social life while living on a college campus.
One of the reasons I don't live on campus or anywhere near the school I attend is because I didn't think it would be an environment that could be conducive to staying clean and sober in drug and alcohol recovery. When I was in college and still actively drinking, I literally did not know how to stop drinking alcohol or using drugs. I feared that by going back to college after completing my addiction alcoholism drug treatment program, I would fall right back into the same cycle that I had been in before I went to a drug addiction rehab center.
still believe this to be partially true, I also see from this article
that a lot of colleges are trying very hard to change this. The
University of Michigan and Penn State University, some of the biggest
'party schools' in the country, are both launching alcohol recovery and
addiction recovery programs that they eventually hope will provide all students, not just addicts, but also those whose close family and friends have struggled with addiction.
These addiction alcoholism drug treatment recovery programs will offer counseling, self-help recovery courses and alcohol- and drug-free activities to sober students in alcohol addiction recovery and perhaps to students who are considering sobriety. This offers students a way to meet people and have fun without destroying themselves with drugs and alcohol.
Most schools currently do not have alcohol recovery and addiction recovery programs like this, and sober students have to rely on living at home or trying to stay sober while living on campus. They may be able to attend twelve step meetings outside of the campus, but it can be hard to meet people of college age at 12 step meetings around the area. It's also hard to feel really connected to the school that you are attending if most of your activities have to take place outside of the school.
Texas Tech University has an addiction alcoholism drug treatment recovery program like this, and today there are around 80 students that belong to the school's recovery community.
I'm certainly not saying that every young person who gets sober cannot go to college and have a good experience. All I am saying is that it can be very difficult, and perhaps not very enjoyable, if you can't partake in the same activities as your classmates. This alcohol addiction recovery community will give sober students a way to connect with their school and their classmates, and it will afford them the necessary tools to remain clean and sober.
Had this addiction alcoholism drug treatment program been in place at the school I attended, maybe I would have received help sooner than I did. I was disciplined at my school for acting out while under the influence, and they had me complete community service and see a school counselor. Instead of doing that, a school that has this new drug addiction treatment and alcohol recovery community in place may have professionals who are better equipped to deal with students like me, who clearly had a problem with drugs and alcohol but just didn't know it yet.
I didn't recognize, or didn't want to acknowledge, the signs of drug addiction and the signs of alcohol abuse that I was displaying in in my life. I think having a program like this in place would help students stay clean and sober, but it could also help other students recognize that they need to change their drinking or drug use. There would be knowledgeable students and professionals who have been in similar situations that would be able to help.
If I had been sent to a sober student or had been forced to attend AA meetings, I don't know that I would have admitted that I was an alcoholic or an addict...I don't know that anyone will admit that they are alcoholics and addicts until they are completely ready to be in alcohol addiction recovery. However, I do think it would have given me more insight into my life, and might have helped me realize sooner that I had a problem.
I think this new drug addiction treatment concept is something that can help people realize that they need help. It would at least give them the opportunity to get the help they need through an addiction alcoholism drug treatment recovery program at their college.