A wide variety of sober living homes and aftercare recovery programs exist to meet the needs of different populations. Some sober living homes are coed. Others focus on the needs of members of the LGBTQIA community. Some are designed with the needs of dual diagnosis patients in mind. There are sober homes for veterans and sober homes for college students. Amidst all this variety are a number of sober living homes that are gender-specific.
Gender-specific sober living homes are available to address the unique needs of men and women in recovery. While addiction affects everyone in similar ways, men often face a variety of obstacles and challenges that are unique to their gender. Recovering from a substance use disorder in the company of a safe and supportive group of like-minded individuals can greatly aid the recovery process.
Benefits of Gender-Specific Sober Living for Men
Gender-specific sober living homes can make the process of recovering from a substance use disorder feel safer, more enjoyable, and ultimately more effective.
Living in a community of other young men allows residents to freely open up about sensitive topics. Men often have issues related to their addiction that they find it uncomfortable to discuss around women. Addiction affects every aspect of a person’s life, including sexuality, mental and physical health, and family life. Men often have addiction stories that include violence and crime. While some people eventually reach a point where they are able to open up about their pasts and their current struggles with anyone, but the early days of sobriety are a vulnerable period of time and it is important to feel safe and unjudged.
The early days of sobriety are a difficult transition period during which many individuals struggle with emotional and behavioral issues. Men in particular are likely to be prone to violent outbursts, compulsive behavior, and competition. Having a gender-specific home for young men is not only more likely to mitigate these behaviors, it is also safer for women and other populations who have their own separate issues to face.
For heterosexual men, being in gender-specific household is also beneficial in that it eliminates the needless distractions of sex and dating, which can derail an individual’s recovery during the early days of sobriety. For homosexual men, a same gender household may not eliminate these distractions, but it does offer a chance for young men to live in a community that is more likely to understand what they’re going through.
Men and Recovery from Substance Abuse
Males have a number of characteristics that increase their risk of developing an addiction and worsen the associated dangers. Men are statistically far more likely to abuse drugs and alcohol than women. Men consume opioids, stimulants, and alcohol in far higher quantities than women. They are also more likely to engage in risk-taking and impulsive behavior, actions that can not only rapidly lead to a substance use disorder but also further endanger people who already suffer from one.
Men often have reservations about seeking treatment even after years of substance abuse. Due to the way men metabolize alcohol and drugs, they tend to experience the damaging mental and physical consequences of substance abuse later than women do. While this may appear to be a positive consequence, the result is that men often spend far more years in active addiction. Men are also more reluctant overall to seek help for their addictions because addiction is far more stigmatized for men.
For many, cultural norms dictate that it is “unmanly” to seek help or to lose control. Burdened by these cultural expectations, men often waste years of their lives fruitlessly trying to exercise discipline and willpower to master their addictions. Unfortunately, without seeking the help of a strong evidence-based treatment program, most have little success.
At a sober living home for men, new residents can join a community of other men who have made the decision to change their way of life. Meeting other young men who have sought help to deal with their challenges can go a great way toward destigmatizing addiction for men. Not only do those who are further along in their sobriety set a great example of what asking for help can achieve, but the simple fact of being around others who suffer from the same conditions can help men realize they are not alone — and that their substance use disorders are not a result of weakness or unmanliness.
Men’s Sober Living Homes in Los Angeles
Los Angeles is home to a thriving sober community. Not only does Los Angeles contain countless treatment centers and sober living homes, but people outside of formal treatment centers have access to support groups and 12-step meetings 24 hours a day. Alcoholics Anonymous and Narcotics Anonymous meetings are held every hour of the day throughout the city, meaning that anyone in need of support is generally only a short walk away from sober companions. Regular attendance of these meetings allows people to develop strong social support systems and new behavioral strategies that facilitate long term sobriety.
Many support groups and 12-step programs offer meetings specifically for men and young people. These meetings allow young men to open up about issues that they might normally be reluctant to talk about in a coed setting or mixed company. Men’s meetings, including gay men’s meetings, are great opportunities to develop social support systems. 12-step programs also often encourage newly sober individuals to get “sponsors” of the same gender. Sponsors are people who have experience in the 12-step program and help guide newly sober people through the process of getting sober and rebuilding a life. The relationship requires a great deal of trust and honesty, and many find that easier with a member of the same gender.
Los Angeles is an enormous city with the largest population in California. Unfortunately, due to rampant crime and poverty, the city also suffers from a major addiction problem. The upside of addiction’s prevalence in LA is that there are many people who have recovered from addiction in the city as well. The city’s open-minded and free-thinking culture makes it a welcome place for people who come from a background of addiction. Many non-addicts in Los Angeles are sensitive to issues of sobriety and addiction, and discrimination is less common in Los Angeles than elsewhere. In fact, in health-conscious Los Angeles, sobriety might even be said to have a certain social cachet.
Sober Fun for Recovering Men in Los Angeles
Los Angeles is an international destination that is widely perceived as an exotic, luxurious place — a paradise for the rich and famous. Residents generally have a more nuanced assessment of the city, but few Angelenos would deny that the city has something for everyone. While Los Angeles certainly has its share of bars and nightclubs, you do not need to be drunk or high to enjoy the city’s offerings.
While it might take some getting used to the idea of “sober fun,” especially in the early days of sobriety, many people discover joy in activities they previously could never imagine doing without the crutch of drugs and alcohol. Having a strong group of sober friends is an important resource when it comes to having sober fun. By connecting with sober companions in a sober living home and in 12-step meetings, many individuals also unlock the city.
While the offerings of Los Angeles are limitless, here are just a few of the fun sober activities to do in Los Angeles:
- The Griffith Observatory. For newly sober individuals, one great way of getting out of your head is looking up — at the stars. The Griffith Observatory offers people a chance to look through high powered telescopes. Located at a high altitude of Griffith Park, you’ll also have a chance to look at the city itself from a bird’s eye perspective.
- The Los Angeles County Museum of Art (LACMA). LACMA’s enormous permanent art collection as well as its revolving exhibits make it an essential destination for the city’s art lovers. There are many other museums throughout Los Angeles as well, including The Getty and the Norton Simon Museum.
- Grand Central Market. Smack dab in the center of Downtown Los Angeles, Grand Central Market is a food hall with plenty of history. Offering both fresh produce and meals at chic mini restaurants, the market draws enormous crowds from all over the city.
- The Santa Monica Pier. The Santa Monica Pier features amusement park rides, arcades, restaurants, and novelty stores. Located above the ocean, the pier is both scenic and exciting.
- Venice Beach. Even if you don’t want to get into the water, Venice Beach is an incredibly diverse place to go for a stroll. Whether you’re interested in shopping or just people-watching, there’s something fr everyone.
- The Hollywood Bowl. The Hollywood Bowl hosts concerts almost every day of the month, featuring major pop stars and experimental musicians alike. There are also countless smaller venues scattered throughout the city, from the Echoplex to the Troubadour.
- Hiking. Los Angeles is nestled against mountains, so it’s no surprise that there are countless trails to hike on. From Griffith Park trails to Runyon Canyon in Hollywood, your options are limitless.
Sober Living Homes for Men
Men’s Sober living homes are often recommended to young men who have graduated from a formal addiction treatment program, such as an inpatient center or medical detox center. They are widely considered an essential part of an aftercare treatment plan, which is a plan for long term addiction recovery after a person leaves the structured world of a treatment facility. Having a long term plan in place is absolutely essential for anyone hoping to stay sober. Research has repeatedly shown that individuals who remain in recovery programs longer have lower chances of relapsing down the line. Men’s Sober living homes offer the ideal recovery program for young men who want to ensure that they continue progressing in their paths to sobriety.
Recovery homes, as they are sometimes known, are also often used as a first line of defense against addiction. At a high quality sober living home, it is often possible for a person to bypass the steps of attending a medical detox center, inpatient program, or partial hospitalization program, though this obviously depends on the unique circumstances of the individual in question and the nature of their addiction. Structured sober living homes in particular are excellent resources for all stages of recovery, since their level of involvement in residents’ recovery extends beyond merely offering a sober place to live.
Male Only Sober Living Homes
Structured sober living homes make a set schedule for every day, manage residents’ activities to ensure sober behavior, help inculcate values such as accountability and honesty, and offer a wide variety of resources conducive to recovery. At a structured sober living home, young men can progress through withdrawal, work on the underlying issues behind their addictions, develop new behaviors and values, and start to rebuild their lives.
Sober living homes are recovery programs that individuals stay in from several months to a year and, as such, they are often seen as a valuable tool for transitioning to the real world. The recovery services available in a sober living home are not limited to addiction recovery. In fact, sober houses place great emphasis on skills and values that are necessary to live quality lives after addiction. To that end, they work with residents to build skills, emphasize values, and set goals.
Many residents of sober living homes enroll in school or get jobs, often aided by the support and resources of the sober living home staff. By the time young men graduate from a sober living home, they have a strong social support system and have begun to build healthy and prosperous lives in sobriety.
Studies on sober living homes have demonstrated that residents have a lower likelihood of relapsing long after graduating, as well as better legal, financial, and mental health outcomes. After graduation, former residents continue to make achievements that previously would have been unthinkable. After finishing the lengthy period of recovery that a sober living home requires, former residents have a strong foundation of sober tools that they take with them into the future.
They will have come to understand that addiction can never be cured, but it can be treated and be put into remission. Many former residents remain involved in their sober living homes, either as a mentor or through graduate support groups. By continually working their program of recovery and expanding their sober social support system through 12-step meetings, sober living home graduates can ensure that they remain sober and substance-free for the rest of their lives.
Finding Men’s Sober Living Homes Near me
Choosing the sober living home that is right for you is an important decision that requires a little bit of research. If you are ready to make a change and take the next step toward sober life, there are a variety of resources that you can take advantage of to find high quality sober living houses near you. These resources include:
- Speak to case workers at your treatment facility. They can often recommend sober living homes that they’ve seen people use successfully.
- Google “men’s sober living houses near me” or “male halfway house near me.” Google will factor in your location and show you sober living homes listed by approximate distance from your device’s zip code.
- Contact a medical professional or social worker who is familiar with your history.
- Get recommendations from members of your support group or 12-step meeting.
- Search the listings on the National Alliance on Recovery Residences (NARR) website.
- Intervention America also lists sober living homes in a large directory. You can even search for specific subtypes, including men’s sober living homes for men.
Ensuring the Quality of Recovery Services
Before enrolling in any sober living home, it is a good idea to ensure that the facility meets your unique needs and is run effectively. You are free to explain to the managers a little bit about your personal history and ask questions about the resources they offer and how structured their program is. A few other characteristics to look for include:
- Managers with extensive training and experience dealing with addiction
- Clear house rules and expectations
- Staff members who are on duty and available 24/7
- Daily schedules and structure (a sober living home is not merely a place to crash for the night)
- Frequent drug-testing to guarantee the sobriety of every resident
- Clean and safe facilities
If you are unsure of the quality of a sober living home, you can consult The Sober Living Network. This organization not only offers a free listing of sober living homes, they also work to make sure that each recovery home in their directory meets quality standards. Members of their Sober Living Coalition are guaranteed to be well-managed, safe, and ethical.
Design for Recovery
Design for Recovery is a sober living home for men located in West Los Angeles. Not only is it centrally located in a city known for its sober resources and community, the home itself offers a highly structured program that can help even the most low-bottom cases of addiction. Young men from all over the country flock to Design for Recovery because the home has a history of helping people who have not had success in other recovery programs. If you are ready to make a change and start rebuilding your life, check out some of the testimonials from other young men who have been through our program and contact us today.