For individuals in recovery from substance use disorders and facing mental health issues, the COVID-19 pandemic has presented a number of unique challenges that none of us were ready to face.
With national social distancing guidelines in place and many states implementing orders to stay at home, many of the in-person resources that support recovery are no longer accessible.
Because we know community and connection are so important and beneficial for addiction recovery, we’ve compiled a list of resources for you to utilize during these difficult, confusing, and turbulent times.
LifeRing Secular Recovery is an organization of people who share practical experiences and sobriety support. They provide support for individuals struggling with drug and alcohol dependence to stay clean and sober. They offer a variety of online meetings.
Refuge Recovery is a sobriety based program grounded in Buddhist principles and teachings. It encompasses mindfulness, compassion towards self and others, and personal growth. They offer a variety of online meetings.
SMART Recovery is a tools and skills based support group that focuses on helping those struggling with addiction to things like drugs, alcohol, gambling and overeating. They also offer an app so you can take your recovery on the go.
While Redditors in Recovery doesn’t offer structured recovery meetings, this is a forum specifically for sober individuals to virtually hang out, share their experiences, and support each other in recovery.
Busy Living Sober Busy Living Sober is a recovery centered podcast hosted by Elizabeth L. “Bizzy” Chance, CRS. Her mission is to bring addiction out of the shadows and educate society on the fact that addiction is a disease, not an identity. She has been in long-term recovery for over a decade. Her podcast (over 150 episodes!) covers topics like the current stress of the world, lies our brains tell us, and coping skills.
Recovery Happy Hour Tricia, the host of Recovery Happy Hour, took her last drink in November of 2016, and enjoys sharing about her experiences and the experiences of other sober people from all over the globe to show you that your life won’t end when you quit drinking. Tune in every Tuesday to hear how life doesn’t end after you break up with alcohol!
The Hilarious World of DepressionThe Hilarious World of Depression is a series of frank, moving, and, yes, funny conversations with top comedians who have dealt with this disease, hosted by veteran humorist and public radio host John Moe. Join guests such as Maria Bamford, Paul F. Tompkins, Andy Richter, and Jen Kirkman to learn how they’ve dealt with depression and managed to laugh along the way. The Hilarious World of Depression is not medical treatment and should not be seen as a substitute for therapy or medication. But it is a chance to gain some insight, have a few laughs, and realize that people with depression are not alone and that together, we can all feel a bit better.
Recovery UnscriptedThere isn’t really a roadmap for sobriety — well, there are a few, but that doesn’t mean the path is always easy or straight. Recovery Unscripted brings fresh perspectives from inside the world of addiction and mental health recovery. Hosted by David Condos (also a great musician!) and powered by the Foundations Recovery Network, the podcast’s mission is to educate and inspire by sharing valuable addiction insights and powerful recovery stories.
Terrible, Thanks For Asking You know how every day someone asks “how are you?” And even if you’re totally dying inside, you just say “fine,” so everyone can go about their day? This show is the opposite of that. Hosted by author and notable widow (her words) Nora McInerny, this is a funny/sad/uncomfortable podcast about talking honestly about our pain, our awkwardness, and our humanness, which is not an actual word.
Not Another Anxiety ShowA podcast for all: from the always anxious to the occasionally overwhelmed to the painfully panicked. Join your host Kelli Walker – registered nurse, Certified Health and Wellness Coach, and former agoraphobe – on an anxiety adventure. Learn what anxiety really is, why the best of us can get caught in its web, and how to move past its sticky grip. Casual conversations with Kelli and other experts will include more than reciting daily affirmations or following “five simple steps” to overcome anxiety. Instead, you’ll get practical tips, resources, and guidance while gaining a down-to-earth and deeper understanding of what it means to be human – an easily overlooked part of truly moving past anxiety.
Refuge Recovery PodcastsFree recovery podcasts are available on major streaming platforms for your use. Our selection includes guided meditations, speaker recordings from sangha members, as well as dharma talks from the community.
Social Media: A Tool or a Trigger?
Social media is a great way to stay connected to those while maintaining safe physical boundaries by staying at home. But with the entire world seemingly in crisis, it’s hard not to get caught up in people’s panic posting.
It’s okay to take a break from the internet if you need to. Put your phone down, close your laptop, and take a deep breath. Consider temporarily deleting certain apps if they’re being more stressful than supportive. You’re not required to maintain a social media presence of constantly be “plugged in”.
However, should you choose to remain on social media, here are some accounts that are uplifting and supportive!
Everyone knows someone who is struggling. Especially during the COVID-19 pandemic. Being a support person for an individual in recovery is a privilege, but can also tall a toll on your mental health. Everyone needs a support system, especially when you’re someone’s support person!
Here are few resources for finding personal support, and ways to encourage those around you with a history of mental health or addiction.
Al-Anon MeetingsAl-Anon offers help and hope to anyone who is affected by alcoholism in a family member or friend. Virtual meetings are available seven days a week in a variety of languages and across several platforms.
Ala-Teen ChatChat live with other young people aged 13 to 18 who have been affected by someone else’s drinking are invited to share experience, strength, and hope with other teens.
Chat meetings are moderated, and teens can only chat when the adult Alateen Group Sponsors are present. At this time, chat meetings can only be accessed on a computer (rather than on mobile devices).
8 Ways to Support Your Loved One in RecoveryEveryone’s journey to recovery will look a little bit different, and every individual will have a specific set of needs, but everyone needs a support system and someone they can rely on. Here are some tips.
Sandstone Care Parent Support GroupSandstone Care offers a once-weekly, free support group for parents and other family members of teens and young adults who are struggling with addiction. Attendees support and build one another up as they discuss navigating the challenges of addiction, substance abuse, and mental health.
Nar AnonThe Nar-Anon Family Group is primarily for those who know or have known a feeling of desperation concerning the addiction problem of someone very near to you. Attendees of these meetings understand that addiction is a disease, and work to realize that, while they are powerless over it, they must take care of themselves in the wake of their loved one’s dependency.
Emergencies happen whether there’s a pandemic happening outside or not. Here are some resources for help during those emergencies. If you or someone close to you is in immediate danger, call 911.
National Suicide Prevention Lifeline: 1-800-273-8255 The National Suicide Prevention Lifeline is a national network of local crisis centers that provides free and confidential emotional support to people in suicidal crisis or emotional distress 24 hours a day, 7 days a week. Not comfortable talking on the phone? You can also use the online chat feature. Click here to chat with a crisis counselor.
Sexual Assault Hotline: 656.HOPE (4673) The National Sexual Assault Hotline is available 24/7 and is a safe, confidential service. The hotline gives you access to a range of free services including confidential support from a trained staff member, referrals to short and long term treatment and crisis providers, information about local laws regarding sexual assault, and general support.Unable or uncomfortable giving them a call but still need support? Use their confidential live chat feature.
Sandstone Care Information & Admissions Line: (202) 816-7435 Sandstone Care helps teens, young adults, and their families overcome challenges with substance abuse, addiction, and mental health concerns. Offering a full continuum of care for individuals ages 13-18, we are here to help, even during the pandemic.
We have an Online Intensive Outpatient Program, same high quality treatment as our in-person IOP, but taking place online. Ideal for those who live too far from our center, have transportation issues, or health concerns that would make in-person treatment challenging.