Relapse is the dirty word that always rears its ugly head when you're in recovery. It's an awful period to be in, and I hate to admit that I have been relapsing pretty hard recently.
Bad feelings and memories from the past have been working their way back into the front of my mind, and bad thoughts about myself have been coming up a lot. It's been a really tough few days, and I don't know how much longer it's going to last. All I can do is hope it passes soon and I need to keep taking care of myself to make sure I'm safe and not letting my self care relapse along with my mental health.
The thing with recovery is that a relapse can come at any time and in any place. Those bad urges to harm yourself can come back at any moment, and they're totally unpredictable. I don't like admitting this to myself, but I have self harmed again - and that's not a good thing. I hated that I did it and I haven't done it again since. Whilst it gave me the old feelings of temporary relief, it's given me long lasting pain and turmoil. I have my boy who's been amazing with my low mood recently, and he's helping me so much to not self harm again.
When you relapse, you need to take care of yourself. You need to keep showering and you need to listen to your favourite music and relax/distract yourself. You need to keep going out to classes or work and you need to keep attending any appointments you have. Relapse doesn't have to mean your life falling apart, you need to make it mean you're not feeling great but you're still clinging onto life. You're still doing everything you're supposed to be doing and you're not letting anything slip.
It can be incredibly hard to keep making meetings and classes etc. and I've missed a lot of University these past couple of weeks due to my relapse. But it's important that you try your hardest to drag yourself out of bed and it's important that you keep your life going. If you let these important things slip, you could be setting yourself up for a longer than necessary relapse and you could end up having a full on break down when things start going wrong.
Relapses are inevitable when you're in recovery, and there's certainly no avoiding them. But just because they're inevitable, that doesn't mean they have to be huge and dramatic. Using your recovery skills that got you out of that bad place the first time can prevent your relapses from being too bad, and they can help to keep you safe in the long run.
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