Have you ever tried to stop drinking, but at every turn, someone is pushing a drink into your hand? As a newly sober person, you will encounter hurdles and life can be stressful. Your friends may not be sober and they may not support your new lifestyle choice. It takes time to distance yourself from alcohol, so it is important to have a plan to help you maintain your sobriety. Facing the world as a sober person can be challenging, and knowing your resources so you do not feel alone on this journey is imperative.
The first days of sobriety can be difficult. Make your goals known. Tell your family and friends that you are aiming to stop drinking and share your reasons. Avoid temptation. In the initial stages, it is beneficial to avoid situations where you may be tempted to drink. Quitting alcohol cold turkey can lead to alcohol withdrawal symptoms that can be dangerous or potentially life-threatening. Therefore, it is important to speak with a medical professional to ensure you have a plan to stop drinking safely. In addition, the Psychological Services Bureau, which can be reached at (213) 738-3500, has law enforcement psychologists and a Substance Abuse Resource Program deputy available to address concerns related to alcohol and substance abuse. Or, if you prefer, there are Peer Support members throughout the Department and chaplains available to provide assistance. Whichever you choose, your decision is confidential. Feel free to contact us for assistance, access these resources through our webpage on the intranet or use the PSB Lighthouse Wellness app (see QR code below).
Having the right “tools in your toolbox” is also important. Going to an Alcoholics Anonymous (AA) meeting is simple. You can call the AA Hotline at (323) 936-4343 to help you stay sober. They can provide you with information on meetings and other AA services. The practice of attending an AA meeting every day for 90 days in a row is a common suggestion for a newcomer to AA. A newcomer is typically a currently sober person who requires significant support to maintain sobriety. Further, they offer services to AA members who have relapsed.
To add to your toolbox, consider getting an AA sponsor. A sponsor is a key component to successfully recovering from alcoholism or drug addiction through the 12-step program. Meetings are also available for friends or family members of an alcoholic. Al-Anon is an international mutual-aid organization for people who have been impacted by another person’s alcoholism. In the organization’s own words, “Al-Anon is a worldwide fellowship that offers a program of recovery for the families and friends of alcoholics, whether the alcoholic recognizes the existence of a drinking problem or seeks help.”