When you’re a gay person struggling with addiction, it can feel like the odds are already stacked against you. Going to outpatient treatment for addiction is a difficult step in itself, and it can be even harder if you don’t feel like your identity will be accepted.
Here’s how to take on this anxiety and make the most of your treatment.
Be Prepared for Uncomfortable Conversations
When going into an outpatient program, it’s important to remember that these types of programs often involve group therapy sessions. This means that you may have to discuss topics openly with people who may not share your views or values.
It is important to be prepared for conversations that could make you uncomfortable before entering the program and to have a plan in place if they occur.
Be Open With Your Provider
It is essential that your provider know about any issues related to being LGBTQ+ so they can best help you get through them during your recovery process. If there are any specific concerns related to being LGBTQ+ that arise during treatment, talk openly with your provider about them so they can help find solutions.
Additionally, make sure that your counselor or therapist is familiar and comfortable working with people from the LGBTQ+ community so that all of your needs are met during treatment.
Focus on Yourself
One of the most beneficial things you can do while attending outpatient program is focus on yourself and your own progress rather than worrying about what other people think or say. This includes accepting yourself just as you are, without judgement or fear of rejection from others.
It also means understanding that everyone has their own unique experiences and goals when it comes to recovery, and that there isn’t one “right” way to approach it—everyone’s journey is different in some way or another! Taking time to focus on yourself can help reduce anxiety around attending an outpatient program as an LGBTQ+ person.
Find Connections with Other Patients
Another way to ease anxiety is by connecting with other patients in treatment who understand what it’s like being a member of the LGBTQ+ community in recovery. This could mean joining support groups specifically for queer individuals dealing with addiction or attending 12-step meetings where gay members are welcome.
These connections can help remind you that you are not alone on your journey—that others have been through similar struggles and still found success in sobriety.
Why Inpatient Treatment May Not Be The Best Option
For some individuals, an inpatient treatment center may seem like the best option—but it might not always be right choice for everyone. For example, if you’re an LGBTQ+ person who feels uncomfortable disclosing information about your sexual orientation or gender identity in a residential setting, then outpatient treatment might be a better fit for you.
This type of program allows you to maintain some autonomy while still receiving necessary therapeutic services on a regular basis—and without having to divulge too much personal information about yourself at once.
Additionally, outpatient programs tend to cost less than inpatient programs—which can make them even more appealing if money seems like a barrier when considering different types of care options available for addiction recovery.
Find Success in Treatment with No Matter What
Attending outpatient treatment as a gay person can be intimidating but with the right preparation, attitude, and support system in place, anyone can succeed in their recovery journey.
It’s important to remember to focus on yourself—your feelings, thoughts, goals—and accept yourself just as you are without judgement from others or fear of rejection. With these steps in mind, anyone can take on their anxiety about going into an outpatient program head-on and make the most out of their experience!
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