Winter is here and with it comes an unlimited amount of social gatherings, holiday parties, and family events. For many people, these are the perfect place to throw any holiday stress to the wind. For teens in recovery, these events can provide a tempting opportunity to engage in substance use.

Make a Plan with Your Teen

Create a plan for managing triggers before, during, and after a holiday event. Include a relapse prevention plan and identify consequences for relapse prior to going to any social event. Identify a safe and sober phone contact in case of emergency.    

Support Your Teens Commitment to Recovery

Have conversations with your teen about their motivation and commitment to their recovery. Host discussions that support your teen’s exploration of their personal values and what they hope to accomplish. The holiday season is a great time to engage in a side passion project to support connection and sobriety as a family.

Coping with Triggers in Recovery

Urges and cravings are likely to arise at social gatherings hosted during the holidays. Practice and remind your teenager how to cope with these stresses so that urges and temptations become more manageable. Encourage your teen to practice these strategies before engaging in any holiday parties, to help strengthen potential for success.  

Support Self-Reflection Over the Holidays

Facilitate conversations that encourage your teen to talk about where they are at emotionally. Discuss if they are in the right place in their recovery to go to the social event and what kinds of support they may need.

Fire Mountain is a Residential Treatment Center in Estes Park, Colorado that offers individual, family, and group counseling curriculum; as well as, schooling alternatives for teens struggling with addiction. It is not always easy to identify addiction in teens; to understand more about drug abuse, how it is affecting your teen, and how to help your acting out teenageer call Fire Mountain Programs at 303-443-3343.