Every year, we have the Holy Trinity of Rehab which signals the recovery rush season. Thanksgiving, Christmas, and New Year’s Day themselves are slow, but shortly thereafter, it turns into a tidal wave of people seeking treatment.
What’s With The Recovery Rush Season?
There are several reasons for this recovery rush season and why the month or two before are a slow time of year for recovery centers and our own OC drug rehab.
Probably the biggest reason that this is a slow time of year is that people want to spend the holidays with family—which is a bit ironic, considering that addicts and alcoholics in need of recovery are usually the people who the least pleasant to be around. It is a bit ironic, too, since recovery is one of the greatest gifts anyone can receive if they’ve been suffering from a substance abuse problem.
However, we can appreciate that these are times for families to come together and to maintain traditions. At the very least, it reminds us of happier times.
Unfortunately, alcoholism and addiction aren’t particularly concerned with people’s schedules. It isn’t really like you can pencil a loved-one’s next bender until after the holidays.
It’s no surprise, then, that addicts and alcoholics come to our Orange County drug and alcohol recovery center looking for help after what was probably a complete disaster. Whether it was nodding out in the mashed potatoes, getting into a fight with that scrappy grandma, or “only” getting a DUI after driving home from a New Year’s Eve party, the results are the same. It ends in embarrassment and further evidence that a problem exists.
New Year’s resolutions actually account for some of this influx as well. Although only 20% of New Year’s resolutions make it past February 1st, there are those who are determined to make it work. After all, recovery isn’t for those who want it or need it—it is for those who work for it.
Contrary to popular belief, addicts and alcoholics have more willpower than the normal drinker or occasional user. Although they might look down upon the lowly drunk or junkie, the truth is that it takes an unfathomable amount of willpower to continue trying to make that lifestyle work in the face of so much overwhelming evidence that it simply will not work.
If we don’t surrender, though, those of our ilk don’t last very long, and as the incomprehensible demoralizations continue to add up, it isn’t surprising that there is a flood of admissions following the holiday season.