The decision to enter a sober living environment comes with many questions to answer. The location of the facility, the length of stay required, and financial questions all come to mind. Another big one is whether or not to choose a gender-specific sober living environment. While some facilities are structured around a co-ed environment, not all are like this. Gender-specific sober living means the facility only allows either men or women to stay there.
Some people who are ready to enter a sober living house aren’t sure which choice is right for them. There are a few things to consider in order to decide on the best option for them. Here are some things to consider about the subject.
The Willingness to Open Up and Be Honest
While it’s not always conducive to traffic in stereotypes, some of them prove to be fairly accurate. The traditional traits of men vs. women lend themselves to the benefits of gender-specific sober living.
Men are taught to be or at least appear strong and in control of their emotions. Showing emotion can be seen as a sign of weakness. This makes it difficult for some men to open up and talk honestly about their experiences and feelings.
Being a member of a sober living house means getting honest with roommates and any treatment team members a person sees. Hesitation sometimes brought on by being fearful of women seeing them be emotionally vulnerable causes some men to clam up. Men often find it easier to embrace the ability to open up when they are surrounded by other males.
Women often find it comes naturally to them to open up and be honest. They can talk in detail about their emotions and experiences. When in mixed company, some women try to appear more reserved. They don’t want to feel as if men see them as talking too much. Women crying can sometimes make men feel uncomfortable, too. When surrounded by other women, they often find it easier to speak openly.
Removing the Complications of Potential Dating and Hookups
Committing to a new sober life proves complicated enough. When you add in a co-ed environment, the opportunities for residents to get involved personally with each other increases statistically. Some residents may experience loneliness and be more susceptible to pursuing a relationship with someone of the opposite sex. Other residents may feel vulnerable and be more likely to cave to pressure to engage in sexual behavior with a roommate.
Often a person new to sobriety is warned not to begin a new relationship until they have banked an extensive amount of time in recovery. They may feel they can make an exception if the other person is also in recovery. They think this means the two of them will understand each other’s situations. This thinking proves flawed because a new relationship or casual fling distracts from the work of becoming and staying sober.
Allowing Physical Appearance to Take a Back Seat
Anyone who works in an office environment and socializes with friends knows about pressure related to their physical appearance. While it may be subtle in some cases, it remains an issue. Women often feel they have to make an extra effort to wear makeup or dress in appealing and sometimes revealing clothing when they are around men.
In return, men tend to feel they have to dress to impress women. They may want to emphasize being physically fit. They may lean towards wearing more formal clothing than they would prefer to wear.
In gender-specific sober living houses, residents report feeling less pressure to worry about their looks. Women are more likely to enjoy the ease of wearing comfortable clothing like sweatpants. They often forgo daily makeup and throw their hair up in a ponytail or clips. Female camaraderie centered around this can make it easier for the women to develop bonds with each other.
Men who forgo the co-ed living option may find they are happy to go a couple of days without shaving. They can wear comfortable clothing that allows them to relax more when working on their recovery. Men can develop a similar bond to the one women do when they don’t worry about dressing to impress.
Past Trauma Can Effect the Sober Living Experience
Myriad types of life events can influence the development of a substance use disorder. Many people who experienced trauma at some point in their lives count it as a contributing reason for their addiction. When that trauma came at the hands of someone of the opposite gender, it can bring a painful aspect to living in a sober house.
For this reason, many people prefer gender-specific sober living homes. They feel more equipped to speak about and work through traumatic issues when surrounded by people of the same gender.
Sober Living in Texas
If you or someone you love is in need of facing their alcohol or drug addiction, Purpose Driven Recovery can help. They offer gender-specific sober living houses in a peaceful part of the Houston area. They provide 24/7 onsite management and a recovery plan that helps you stay on a path to a brighter future. Call them today at (713) 266-1507 or click here to contact them.