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What Are Sober Living Homes?
Sober living homes are available as apartments, dorms, or houses for rent. In addition to being a drug and alcohol-free environment, individuals can develop a sense of community and independence as they engage with others, work, and have chores in their home. Sober living homes offer aftercare support, and 12-step ideologies which encourage personal responsibility and growth. It is not uncommon for sober living homes to enforce strict rules to maintain structure and order within the homes. Visitors may not be allowed to stay at the home overnight, and residents are not allowed to use drugs or alcohol. Rehab and detox are often mandatory before attending a home.
How Are They Helpful?
There are several benefits of sober living homes. The life of addiction can create anxiety and uncertainty about going back into the “real world.” Sober living homes offer a feeling of stability to individuals coming from instability. Sober living homes provide self-confidence and independence after the process of rehab. One can feel a new sense of purpose while maintaining a job, contributing to a household, and making friends. Lastly, being in a drug-free environment encourages a life without drugs, and having peers who are on the same path can serve as motivation to get and stay clean. Individuals are often required to attend 12-step meetings like Alcohol Anonymous throughout their stay in the sober community.
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Sober Living Homes Versus Oxford Houses
In addition to sober living homes, there are Oxford houses that are similar in intention and built to serve as another option for those transitioning out of rehab and into society. Sober living homes offer a professional support staff and residents are allowed to stay for a certain amount of time. There is no staff in an Oxford house and residents can stay as long as they like, as long as they pay their rent and maintain a drug and alcohol free lifestyle.
Both housing options instill patient empowerment once detox and inpatient or outpatient rehab is complete. Residents maintain jobs since they have to pay rent, and balance other commitments like school or family life. Both have the intention of keeping addictions from reoccurring by offering drug and alcohol-free environments. Residents get drug tests and rules prohibit drug and alcohol use. Both help remind residents of what everyday life of sobriety is like.
These homes both offer collaboration through shared responsibilities and group connection. Both sober living homes and Oxford houses promise reduced substance abuse statistics, and studies focusing on Oxford houses found supporting evidence. A study published in the American Journal of Public Health found that 69% of people who lived in an Oxford house after completing treatment remained abstinent from drugs or alcohol, compared to 35% of people remaining abstinent who partook in a usual aftercare program.
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Sober Living Home Costs
The individual is responsible for paying the rent while residing in a sober living home, which can be cheaper than the cost of apartments. Like leasing an apartment, some homes require individuals to pay first and last month’s rent, while some others charge fees upfront like deposits and administrative fees. Examples can range from $25 to $2,000 or more. Again, these fees may not be required in each home. Each will vary so the individual should do their research and contact homes they are considering to find out exactly how much they are required to pay upfront and monthly.
The cost will vary based on location and the home, but many can range from $200 to $260 per week to $800 to $1,000 a month. Each state’s rent and fees will vary, but many offer affordable plans for monthly rent. In addition to weekly or monthly rent, residents are responsible for groceries, household items like toiletries and cleaning supplies, and sometimes bills like internet and utilities.
Car notes, gas, and insurance may be an expense some may or may not have to worry about, depending on the type of transportation arrangements. Residents are encouraged to work while residing in a sober living home as insurance does not usually cover sober living home costs. In some cases, individuals get support from family and friends in order to get the financial support needed, however, most require residents to have their own jobs to avoid consequences like eviction.
Benefits Of Gender-Specific Homes
Sober living homes can be co-ed, for mothers or expecting mothers, or based on gender and specific ages. These can help individuals form deep bonds, connecting with peer groups who share similar characteristics. For example, some women-only options offer childcare on-site for mothers. The benefits of gender-specific homes are plenty. Unique gender issues can be addressed and can provide feelings of safety for residents who may have dealt with abuse or trauma inflicted upon them by another gender.
Additional support based on gender-related issues can help foster feelings of connection. The chances of a romantic relationship between residents developing can be diminished for heterosexual residents, as many treatment professionals recommend not getting involved in a sexual or romantic relationship early on in recovery.
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Sober living homes are designed to be a safe and supportive drug-free space. Fortunately, there are many options to choose from after completing treatment at a licensed rehabilitation facility. To learn more, contact a dedicated treatment provider to get answers to your treatment questions today.
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