Sober Social Apps
Social media has become a primary means of linking communities, exchanging support and feedback, and developing and maintaining connections from all over the world. These resources can be critical for those in addiction recovery. When an individual in recovery first leaves treatment, it’s very common for them to feel isolated and alone in their struggles. On one hand, they don’t feel as though they can return to the world to which their addiction took them. On the other, their behavior when they were actively using may make it hard for their families and loved ones to immediately fully embrace them as they transition back into their everyday lives. Sober social apps have been used more and more to help people in recovery support one another and make new connections that help them stay clean.
What Are Sober Social Apps?
Sober social apps are social media platforms for individuals in addiction recovery. They’ve been gaining more and more traction over the past five years and have received millions of dollars in grants from the National Institutes of Health. As with any social media app, they span the social spectrum, from those looking for advice and inspiration to help maintain their sobriety, to those looking for new friends in the recovery community, to those looking to develop serious long-term romantic relationships with people who understand and share their struggles. These apps can also serve as a lifeline if users are feeling vulnerable to relapse or have started using again and are headed for overdose.
Why Sober Social Apps?
Traditional social apps like Facebook, Twitter and Instagram usually connect users with family and sober friends who don’t know what it’s like to go through addiction. It can be very difficult for addicts to open their true feelings and struggles in this setting because of fear of judgment, scorn and entirely unsolicited advice. Fellow individuals on sober social apps understand how the vulnerabilities and struggles of post-treatment recovery and can provide an experienced and informed sounding board when others are feeling vulnerability. Though they are not a substitute for traditional recovery meetings, sober social apps can also supplement traditional recovery meetings for those who find themselves unable to go as often as they’d like.
Keeping Users from Relapse
One of the most valuable assets that sober social apps offer is their intuitive relapse-prevention capabilities. Many of these apps can detect when a recovering is in a problematic area or among risky past associations and send them an alert or affirmational reminder of the progress they’ve made in recovery. The app Hey, Charlie helps people avoid environmental triggers that might threaten their recovery from an opioid addiction. It is now being piloted by several treatment centers in Massachusetts and monitors a user’s contacts and location and sends pop-up notifications to caution them about risky acquaintances or neighborhoods.
Other popular sober social apps include, but are not limited to:
- Sober Grid – A social networking app with an Instagram-life news feed that lets users share photos and informational resources and exchange support in recovery. Sober Grid claims to be the world’s number-one sober social app.
- SoberTool– A discreet discussion forum that allows users to safely disclose their vulnerability as they endeavor to stay clean. Users choose from a number of discussion topics to get up-to-the-minute support from their recovery network.
- Recovery Box – Facilitates tracking of daily life activities by easily breaking them down into your “lights”. Breaking habits requires knowing why we do what we do, when do we do it and coming up with goals to break unhealthy behaviors.
- Sober –Offers real time, stigma free support for sobriety in a fun and engaging environment. A sobriety tracker, daily check ins, and a community based daily inspiration feature are some of the additional functionality built into the app.
There are many more sober social apps designed to provide whatever social needs currently exist within the recovery community.
Sober social apps put empowerment, accountability, and support and community right in the palm of your hand. They have proven to be effective in helping younger addicts find the support and affirmation they need to permanently overcome their addiction and avoid relapse. Check them out for yourself or a loved one today. There are people out there who will listen, and sober social apps put them just a few clicks away.
- Hey, Charlie
- Sober Grid
- Recovery Box
- NIH – Social Media Grants