Oklahoma, located in the South Central region of the United States, is bordered by Kansas, Texas, Arkansas, New Mexico, Missouri, and Colorado. This landlocked state is part of the extreme of the Upland South. Oklahoma is sometimes known by its nickname, “The Sooner State,” due to the impatience with which it was settled by colonizers. Today, Oklahoma residents are known as Oklahomans, or sometimes “Okies.” Oklahoma’s land covers three regions: the Great Plains, the US Interior Highlands, and the Cross Timbers — all of which are known for severe weather. Mesas, endless prairie, eastern forests, and mountain ranges all add to the natural beauty of Oklahoma.
Oklahoma is a thriving state, with a strong economic base in telecommunications, biotechnology, energy, and aviation. Oklahoma is also a significant producer of oil, agricultural products, and natural gas. Originally growing during an early 1900s oil boom, Oklahoma’s cities have a refined air quality. Oklahoma’s iconic countryside, sometimes thought of as a gateway to the west, is an example of pure Americana, while its cities are filled with museums, art galleries, and lavish gardens. The culture of Oklahoma is also notably diverse, combining elements of Native American culture is classic Southern hospitality.
Nonetheless, all is not perfect in Oklahoma. Individuals who suffer from drug and alcohol addiction in Oklahoma often feel they have nowhere to turn. Without seeking help, many end up suffering from significant physical and mental health problems. Over time, they may lose their employment and become destitute. As addictions develop, they can cause relationships and even entire families to split apart. Substance use disorders have caused considerable social and economic devastation in many communities in Oklahoma, especially smaller ones where recovery options may be more limited.
Alcohol remains the most commonly abused drug in Oklahoma, though cocaine addiction, heroin addiction, crystal meth addiction, and other drug addictions are also ubiquitous. In recent years, the opioid epidemic has led to skyrocketing prescription opioid addictions. Physicians in Oklahoma write 79.1 synthetic opioid prescriptions for every 100 residents, which is far above the national average. As a result, opioid overdoses made up 43% of the 308 drug fatalities that occurred in Oklahoma in 2018. As more and more residents of Oklahoma develop substance use disorders, these numbers are set to rise.
Help for addiction is available. Sober living houses in Oklahoma help individuals suffering from addiction at any severity. Whether a person is only just beginning to recognize the initial warning signs of an addiction, or if they have experienced severe consequences over many years, sober living homes can help. By making use of the strong support system and structure that sober livings offer, it is possible to get sober, stay sober, and build a quality life in recovery.
What Are Sober Livings?
Sober livings are not clinical addiction treatment programs. Rather, they are residences where individuals can live who are trying to stay sober. In a quality sober living home, the residence is far more than just a place to crash for the night. Residents work hard to develop the skills and tools they need to maintain sobriety over the long term. As such, sober livings not only require residents to stay clean and sober — they also provide structure, schedules, and help residents manage their lives. Residents are free to stay as long as they need, often for a year or more. As such, sober livings are often used as a primary means of getting sober. They are also often utilized as transitional programs for recent rehab graduates, or as a place of residence for current outpatient rehab clients.
Living in a safe and trigger-free environment is an important element of addiction recovery. During early sobriety, most people are very vulnerable to triggers. No matter how hard one tries to stay sober, the process can be complicated if your daily life is constantly triggering you. Triggers can range from direct exposure to substance abuse to emotionally upsetting events. Sober living houses are places where residents have their safety guaranteed, and where everyone they spend time around will be equally committed to the recovery process.
While living in a sober living house, residents support one another. As such, a sober living is more than a home — it is a community. Individuals who have been sober longer often serve mentorship roles and become leaders. It can be profoundly healing having a chance to open up with others who share similar experiences. Housemates offer each other experience, strength, and hope 7 days a week. These relationships, which often blossom into lifelong friendships, not only make life in sobriety enjoyable, they help keep people sober as well. One study on sober livings found that peer support that residents obtain is the most important factor, and for this reason, sober living graduates tend to have lower rates of relapse even years after graduating.
But recovery is about more than just not relapsing. Quality sober livings place great emphasis on rebuilding one’s life. It is rare for a person just to want to quit drugs and alcohol. Most people in recovery hope to improve their relationships, become financially secure, and be able to take care of themselves. As such, sober living houses work hard to support residents as they work to achieve these goals. By attending a sober living home, a person not only gets support as they try to develop long-term sobriety, but they also get support building a new future.
Sober Fun in Oklahoma
If you say the word “sober fun” to someone who is actively using drugs and alcohol, they’ll likely raise their eyebrow. For active addicts and alcoholics, the idea of going to a concert or going camping without drugs and alcohol sounds boring — or even painful. However, by attending a quality sober living home, individuals can learn new coping skills that allow them to handle just about anything. More importantly, the friendships that residents develop make it easy to find laughter, joy, and excitement just about anywhere.
Oklahoma has plenty to offer for locals and visitors alike who are looking for sober fun. Nonetheless, it is important to note that Oklahomans often benefit from leaving their home state during their initial period of early sobriety. All too often, staying in the same place is a recipe for relapse, since it makes it far more likely that one will be exposed to triggering reminders of one’s past life. Recovering elsewhere, such as a sober living home in California, can make it far easier to develop the coping skills and social support system that makes sober life possible — and enjoyable. With a strong foundation of sober skills, however, returning to Oklahoma and enjoying its many offerings becomes quite possible.
Fun sober activities in Oklahoma include:
Oklahoma City Zoo
The Oklahoma City Zoo has many pathways that amble through different ecosystems, from tropical jungles to African plains. This zoo is over a century old, and it includes over 500 distinct animal species, including endangered animals. The zoo is also adjacent to a beautiful botanical garden.
Museum of the Great Plains
Located in Lawton, the Museum of the Great Plains is devoted to educating visitors on the lives of Native Americans and pioneers. The outdoor component of the museum includes historical buildings, a trading post, and an old schoolhouse. Inside, artifacts and exhibits related to Native American culture provide a glimpse into life before Oklahoma was settled by colonizers.
Woolaroc Museum and Wildlife Preserve
Yes, Oklahoma truly is where the buffalo roam. The Woolaroc Ranch is home to longhorn cattle, elk, and American bison. These beautiful and endangered animals roam free throughout this 3,700-acre territory. Visitors are encouraged to be respectful as they take pictures of these magnificent creatures.
National Weather Center
It may sound boring, but it’s anything but. Oklahoma is known for having some of the strangest and most severe weather of any state. Weather occurrences range from dramatic lightning to powerful tornadoes. The National Weather Center is actually a research center, performing important work like predicting storms. However, its mission also includes educating the public on weather phenomena. Guided tours are available throughout the year.
Route 66 is world-famous, running halfway across the country from Los Angeles to Chicago. The longest run of Route 66 cuts diagonally across the state of Oklahoma. Route 66 is the route that many people take when doing a road trip across the country. As such, it has a long and storied history. Countless attractions have sprung up as a result, including the Oklahoma Route 66 Museum, the Transportation Museum, eclectic shops, and 1950s style diners.
Philbrook Museum of Art
The Philbrook Museum of Art, located in Tulsa, Oklahoma, is a former Italian Renaissance-style villa. Today, it is an art museum that includes over 24 acres of gardens as well. The building itself is a testament to the great wealth that existed in Tulsa during the oil boom of the 1920s, while the contents of the museum are a testament to the cultural wealth of the world. This museum’s international scope covers works from Asia, Africa, and Europe.
Benefits of Oklahoma Sober Livings
It is not possible for a person to simply cure an addiction. They are chronic mental health conditions that require lifelong management. However, it is possible to live joyful and fulfilling lives free from the compulsions of addiction. Learning to do so is what is known as recovery. Addiction recovery takes time; it means developing new skills, new behaviors, and new relationships. It means fixing up the wreckage of the past and preparing for a new future. Recovery is certainly not an overnight process and it requires a great deal of support.
Sober livings facilitate long-term recovery by offering structure and a wide variety of resources. They also allow residents to stay for as long as they need. While many treatment centers discourage clients from staying in rehab for longer than 90 days, sober livings in Oklahoma and elsewhere encourage clients to leave when they are ready. However, this does not mean that life in a sober living is all fun and games: residents work hard every day to stay sober and become independent. Some of the many benefits sober living residents experience are:
Addiction is categorized by many researchers as a disease of despair. It often arises from loneliness and social isolation, and it also increases isolation — a truly vicious cycle. Moving into a sober living means joining a community of people who understand. Residents form strong bonds, keep each other accountable, and offer guidance. Moreover, people who are convinced that life in sobriety is boring or joyless will quickly discover that having sober friends changes all that. Many people end up moving into apartments or starting businesses with their friends from sober living after graduating.
Staff members at a quality sober living are compassionate, disciplined, and entirely committed to the recovery process. Not only do they live on-site with residents, but in many cases, they themselves have been through the recovery process. Staff members are experienced mentors. They are available both day and night to enforce house rules, administer drug tests, and help residents with any issues they have.
While many of their peers were out getting jobs, going to graduate school, or getting married, addicts and alcoholics were feeding their addictions. As a result, individuals with addictions often lack basic life skills. Sober living staff members help them learn important skills, ranging from writing a resume to using healthier conflict management techniques. In the process, sober living residents become fit to meet the challenges of early sobriety — and the inevitable challenges of life in general.
Transitions from Rehab
Sober living houses do not offer clinical addiction treatment. Nonetheless, sober livings are frequently used as a kind of “bridge” between rehab and the outside world. Transitioning too abruptly from an inpatient rehab program back to the outside world can be jarring and lead to relapse. It is crucial to take the time necessary to find work, develop a support system, and learn new sober behaviors. As such, sober livings are one of the most commonly recommended types of aftercare programs for graduates of treatment centers. Research shows that getting involved in aftercare recovery programs after rehab reduces relapse rates.
Should I Choose a Sober Living in Oklahoma?
If you’re wondering if sober living is right for you, in most cases the answer is yes. Sober livings are appropriate for all levels of addiction. People whose lives have been destroyed by addiction benefit just as much as those who are only just beginning to recognize the warning signs. Sober livings provide an opportunity to get connected, learn new behaviors, and build a solid life in sobriety. However, for Oklahoma residents, it may be best to choose a sober living elsewhere.
Recovering outside of Oklahoma has many advantages. For those who have spent years abusing alcohol and drugs in Oklahoma, it is likely that associations and reminders of one’s old way of life will be ever-present. Making a clean slate in a new state decreases the likelihood of encountering risky triggers. It also quite literally forces a person to make new relationships and look at the world with fresh eyes.
Countless people venture to Los Angeles each year to begin new lives in sobriety. Los Angeles is a beautiful city to recover in, with its towering and hike-friendly mountains, its surf-friendly beaches, and its cultural riches. More importantly, however, Los Angeles is home to a vibrant recovery community, which can be found in its many structured sober living homes and 12-step meetings. If you visit a coffee shop in LA, there’s no guarantee you’ll encounter a celebrity, but there’s a 99% chance that at least one person there is in recovery.
Recovery is Possible at Design for Recovery
Centrally located in West Los Angeles, Design for Recovery is the city’s foremost structured sober living house for men. The property offers a safe, supportive, and trigger-free environment for young men who are looking for a fresh start. Our emphasis on the 12-steps and on strong principles to live by inform our approach to addiction recovery. Young men in our home strive daily to develop healthier behaviors, address underlying issues, and work toward new goals that may have seemed unachievable only a short time prior.
We believe that recovery goes well beyond physical abstinence. At Design for Recovery, we help residents discover a new blueprint for living, informed by values like accountability, honesty, humility, and integrity. This requires a great deal of outward behavioral change as well as inward soul-searching, but the process is facilitated by the strong relationships that residents develop. Residents learn to rely on each other at Design for Recovery, and in the process, they become leaders — and ultimately the best possible versions of themselves.
If you are ready to put down drugs and alcohol and begin a new life, reaching out for help is the first step. Contact us today for a free and confidential consultation.