Are you looking for addiction support groups for men? Do you need support through your addiction recovery process? Do you know a loved one or family member who can benefit from an addiction support group therapy? Do you want to understand more about addiction recovery? This article is for you if you answered yes to any of these questions.
Hi. My name is Sean Galla. I am a facilitator of support groups and support forums for men, including addiction support groups, with over ten years of experience. My work provides safe spaces for men to talk about men’s issues, including addiction. In my work, I have seen firsthand how important being part of a support group is, especially for men living with addiction.
A support group is a fantastic place for anyone to get the support, information, and help they need to understand addiction and overcome it. This article gives you all the information about addiction and joining an addiction support group for recovery. I will tell you why a support group is highly recommended for anyone interested in overcoming addiction.
Table of Contents:
What is an addiction support group for men?
An addiction support group for men is an informal support forum created specifically for men struggling with substance use disorders (SUD), alcohol use disorders (AUD), and co-occurring mental health disorders caused by drug use.
By 2022, at least 20.3 million Americans were living with substance use disorder (SUD) related to either alcohol use or drug use. According to national institute SAMHSA (Substance Abuse and Mental Health Services Administration), while chronic, SUD is treatable.
An addiction support group employs effective recovery program intervention procedures that address the individual needs of every member while encouraging them to seek professional healthcare for their type of addiction where they can get access to behavioral therapy, psychotherapy, self-management support, medication, empowerment, and long-term follow-up to prevent the possibility of a relapse.
Most addiction treatment programs and treatment facilities encourage patients to join addiction support groups and alcoholics anonymous programs in person during the course of treatment and even after as part of their recovery and sobriety process. These community-based programs are valuable resources for information and support required during inpatient treatment and outpatient addiction and substance abuse treatment.
Considered a mental illness, addiction is a chronic, relapsing compulsive disorder that causes brain changes characterized by a dependence on a behavior or drugs, affecting their wellness. A person living with substance use disorders like alcohol addiction or drug addiction is often compelled to pursue the harmful habit despite the negative consequences.
People living with drug abuse addiction exhibit signs of distorted behavior and thinking. This is caused by brain function and structure changes, causing them to experience intense cravings for a harmful substance.
Addiction develops through tolerance. For most people, drug use or an addictive, compulsive behavior starts as a fun activity, slowly leading to frequent use.
Addiction also occurs in stages. The brain and body’s reaction at the onset of addiction changes as one moves through the stages.
The four stages of addiction are:
- Experimental stage: using or engaging in drugs out of curiosity
- social or regular stage: using and engaging in drug-present social settings as part of having fun
- problem or risk stage: extreme using or engaging in drug use with disregard for consequences
- dependency stage: engaging in addictive behavior daily, or several times a day, despite the negative consequences
Common Signs and symptoms of addiction
According to the American Psychiatric Association, for one to be diagnosed with addiction, they need to exhibit a maladaptive pattern of drug use that causes significant problems to their behavioral health or stress. This maladaptive pattern can manifest through at least two of the signs or symptoms below in one year.
Consistent drug use or alcohol abuse, even when proven to be physically dangerous, causes repeated legal issues or social or relationship issues. Other common signs of addiction include:
- Inability to meet significant responsibilities at home, work, or school.
- Increased tolerance to the drug – decreased effect of the drug or significant increase in the amount needed to get high.
- Withdrawal symptoms when not using
- The need to take that drug or anything chemically close to the drug as a way of avoiding withdrawal symptoms.
- Taking more significant amounts of the drug longer than intended.
- Inability to decrease or control the urge to use
- Spending excessive time getting, using, or recovering from the effects of the drug
- Lack of will to engage in significant recreational, social, school, or work activities due to substance use
- Negative decision-making due to impaired cognitive behavioral activities.
- Continuous use of the drug despite suffering from ongoing or recurring psychological or physical issues.
Benefits of addiction support groups for men
They are a reminder that you are not alone
Addiction is lonely. Most people living with addiction live in isolation since friends and family members walk away from them. This isolation and feeling rejected takes a toll on their mental health, which makes the addiction worse.
Being part of addiction recovery talking groups online or smart recovery groups is a great way to find support from fellow men who understand how lonely the recovery journey can be. In a recovery support group, you gain valuable insight from other people’s experiences and get to be in the company of others who are just like you and have a common goal to overcome addiction.
You get emotional support and compassion
A support network of friends you can confide in and turn to without shame or guilt is necessary for recovery. Alcohol support groups and drug support groups offer you a judgment-free space to vent feelings and discuss common challenges encountered in the recovery process.
Decreased alcohol or drug use and accountability
Having an addiction recovery support group incorporated into addiction treatment can decrease the likelihood of relapsing. This is because you feel accountable to other group members, making it easier to remain sober.
Support groups foster self-acceptance
Shame and guilt are big stumbling blocks in the recovery journey that often lead recovering people with an addiction to use again as a way of escaping the emptiness and feelings of worthlessness. Being part of a recovery peer support group humanizes addiction and shows that recovery is possible. It also makes it easier for you to make peace with your past.
Stigma is one of the most common causes of relapsing among recovering people with a substance use disorder. Being part of 12-step groups or peer-led support groups will equip you with the knowledge and tools you need to handle stigma and prevent it from leading you back to your vices.
Support groups such as addiction recovery groups or overeating support groups use advocacy and shared experiences to challenge societal stigma on mental health and addiction.
You can learn new skills and recovery training
An addiction recovery support group comprises people from all walks of life, making it a pool of knowledge, experience, and skills. Almost every group member has a toolbox of coping skills you can learn. This includes ideas on how to handle different issues related to addiction recovery.
Support for family members
Some addiction support groups and recovery centers extend support to family members of people with a substance use disorder. Through these collaborations, family members can better understand their loved ones living with addiction. This helps to heal damaged relationships and develop healthier support systems, even at home.
Addiction support groups for men recommendations
Al-Anon family groups
Al-Anon is a support group for family members and caregivers of alcoholics. It offers support, guidance, and an opportunity to learn from other people who have lived with alcoholics. It has a support group for families and teens to ensure everyone has a safe space to come and learn more about alcoholism.
Narcotics Anonymous is one of many 12-step programs and treatment providers for narcotics addicts. As a global community-based organization, meetings occur in different parts of the world in different localities. You can check online for an available meeting in your area. It offers recovery from the effects of narcotics addiction through the twelve-step program.
MensGroup is an online men’s support group that offers group support, help, and guidance to men interested in becoming better versions of themselves, including men working to overcome addiction.
Why are male support groups important? they are a supportive network of men ready and willing to help others like them through shared life experiences. The men’s group session contains relevant information to help you lead a better life. It is more than just a self-help group. It offers one the support and guidance for relapse prevention to become a better man and lead a more fulfilling.
As an online support group for men, the group meets virtually over video or chat, making it perfect for busy men who prefer not to attend physical addiction anonymous meetings, especially in this coronavirus pandemic era.
Like any other mental health problem, understanding addiction is a necessary first step when working towards recovery. Whether you are a person with an addiction looking for help or a friend or loved one to a person with a substance use disorder, this article has all the information you need to understand addiction and help you get the help you need.
MensGroup offers a strong social network of friends who will walk with you in your recovery journey for men needing a support network.