AMESBURY — ‘Tis the season, brimming with twinkle and sparkle — and posing distinctive challenges for those in recovery from drug or alcohol addiction and their families and friends.

With almost five decades of experience, Link House Inc. understands the intensity and complexity of the challenges people with substance use disorder face on a daily basis, and especially around the holidays. That’s why the organization recently opened the Center for Behavioral Health and Addiction Treatment Services at Boston North Technology Park, to give people struggling with substance use disorder a place to turn when they need help.

The center’s team has curated a list of tips to help those in recovery navigate the holidays:

1. Make a list of supports. Have their numbers. Call, text, FaceTime.

2. Find a meeting — and again, and again, and again, even if traveling for the holidays or if you’ve never been to one. 

3. Don’t feel obligated to accept every invitation to every event. Choose carefully. Sometimes self-care is the greatest gift.

4. Bring your own drinks — and plenty of them. Make sure your sober supply doesn’t run out. You might be surprised to find that some will want to share it, and other people in recovery might find their way to you.

5. Limit time with people who make you feel uncomfortable and trigger negative behaviors.

6. Keep realistic expectations of yourself and others.

7. Plan activities with people who are supportive. Grabbing a cup of coffee, checking out a movie or going for a walk helps pass the time and clear your head.

8. Be gentle with yourself. Don’t expect perfection.

9. Remember, this will pass. It’s only a few days out of the year. 

10. Ask for help. Keep the center’s phone number’s handy and call anytime: 978-834-6583.

You are not alone on the road to recovery. If you or someone you know needs help this holiday season, reach out.

Link House Inc.’s Center for Behavioral Health and Addiction Treatment Services focuses on addiction recovery, provides individual, group and family therapy, psychopharmacology and medication management services, recovery coaching, community education. and training for professionals. Mass Health and most major insurances are accepted. Call 978-834-6583 or email CBHATS@linkhouseinc.org for more information.

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