Should My Teen Live in Sober Housing?
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Sober housing feels like it is restricted to adults because adolescents should live with their families, right? But, there are a lot of situations where young people live in safe settings apart from their families: camp, boarding school, inpatient rehab, etc.
Often, young people need to occupy a separate sphere to grow or to mature and these spheres are developed and maintained by professionals who can offer support and guidance. Sober living houses are no different.
Many teens in recovery need the support that a sober house can provide, but those houses also need to be tailored to the adolescent addict. The concerns of an adult man and a teenaged boy are very different. They respond to peer pressure differently; their brains and bodies are at different stages of development; their concerns and stressors are different. There are many ways in which the two diverge and the same is true of adult women and teenaged girls.
However, there are sober houses that are geared toward the adolescent resident and they might work wonders for your child or adolescent loved one. If you would like help finding appropriate sober housing for a teen addict or you need questions answered, SoberHouse.com can help. Call 800-373-1667 (Who Answers?) today and speak to an expert.
Teenagers go through a few stages of development, which stretch from age 11 to age 21.
- Early: age 11 to 14
- Middle: age 15 to 17
- Late: age 18 to 21
During these stages, physical, emotional, social, and intellectual development occurs. Puberty is the most obvious physical change. These changes happen fairly early in adolescence and are complete by the middle stage. If your teen is still in the middle and early stages, the changes in their body will need to be catered to in order for the sober housing to holistically support their needs.
Intellectually, young people see the world in black and white; things are right or wrong and there are no shades of grey. They also fail to acknowledge the future and act in the moment. Because of this, they will experiment with risky behavior, like testing drugs or alcohol.
Even though they are able to think with more subtlety and consideration of the future as they get older, the skills are still fairly new and can be used inconsistently. Sober living will need to keep these intellectual boundaries in mind and approach teens in ways that they can understand and respond to.
Emotionally, teens are working to become more independent and sober housing may appeal to their desire to stand alone without fully having to take charge of their own life. But, teens are conflicted about the process of independence and they will often desire going back to the care of their family. Sober housing can give them both support and autonomy.
Socially, a young person’s life revolves around family. As teens mature, their social circle widens. They will develop crushes and fall in love with complete abandon and total passion. An all ages sober housing situation may not be able to work around teen’s fluctuating emotional development.
Teens and Peer Pressure
Adolescents act based on peer pressure more than they know. Researchers studied the risk-reward response of adolescents, young adults, and adults as they proceeded through a computer simulated track. Traffic lights frequently turned yellow and it was up to the driver whether to stop and wait or proceed through at the risk of getting in an accident. Adolescents (not young adults or adults) chose the risky option much more often when they knew two friends were watching, even if the friends did not say anything to influence the choice.
Further research discovered even peer pressure and peer conformity that did not make clear reference to drug use still linked strongly with drug use in teens.
Because peer pressure so greatly affects the actions of teens, many teens turn to drugs and alcohol as a response to peer drug and alcohol use. Sober Housing benefits them in a few ways. It distances them from peers who are a poor influence, and sober housing uses social influence to support and maintain residents’ sobriety.
If you believe that an adolescent in your life would benefit from sober housing, finding an appropriate housing situation can be difficult. Let Us help. Just call 800-373-1667 (Who Answers?) and work with us to get your teen the help he or she needs.