There are many good arguments against drug testing by employers. Drug testing makes certain assumptions about prospective employees, it’s unnecessarily invasive, and outside of careers involving dangerous materials or keeping people safe, it’s probably not all that necessary.
But when it comes to drug testing in a sober home environment, there are good reasons for it. A sober home is a shared space full of people working on the goal of staying free from drug and alcohol addiction. Drug testing is the first line of defense for a sober community.
All About Safety: How Drug Testing Keeps Sober Homes Safe
Drug testing in a sober home really helps keep the environment drug-free and safe for residents. Drugs and alcohol can be dangerous for people in early sobriety, so it’s important to have a drug-free environment. Apart from undoing the hard work of recovery, drugs and alcohol can cause people to behave erratically — even violently.
An unstable person in an environment of people already feeling somewhat rattled from the demands of treatment isn’t just disturbing — they’re dangerous.
Also, returning to drug abuse after even a short time sober can increase the risk of relapse. A heavy user of opioids who gets sober and then returns to using the same amount they were using before treatment is at serious risk of an overdose.
Drug testing allows house management to intervene in problems before there’s an incident that puts the rest of the house in danger or relapse or worse.
Residents Agree To Drug Testing: It’s Part of the Sobriety Agreement
When someone moves into a sober living home, they agree to drug testing. Drug tests are part of the sober home agreement and form an important part of a drug-free lifestyle in sobriety. They’re something agreed to in exchange for living in a sober environment.
Drug testing is a part of drug addiction treatment centers, too. So when someone moves into a sober home to continue the recovery process, drug testing is part of life and routine. It’s not something that outsiders would consider an invasion of privacy but rather a normal procedure for maintaining sobriety in early recovery.
Accountability is a cornerstone of recovery from drug and alcohol abuse. Drug tests ensure all residents of a sober home are accountable for their actions and behaviors.
Drug Testing Removes Temptation From The Sober Environment
A drug test is also a safeguard against temptation. Addiction can be triggered by many different things — smells, the appearance of paraphernalia, seeing someone under the effects of a drug they used to abuse, and so on.
By testing residents for drugs, house management is again able to stop a problem from getting out of control. An environment free from distractions, urges, and temptations allow sober home residents to work on their recovery free from relapse and cravings.
Drug Testing Sends A Message, Too
Drug testing also helps drug dealers know a sober home isn’t good for their business. Drug dealing can be dangerous for dealers and customers alike — drug dealing is a violent business, and drug suppliers don’t care who gets hurt if their product is threatened.
Drug testing removes that risk for residents by making it clear the house is drug-free, meaning there’s no point for looking for customers. If buying drugs simply means the purchaser will get kicked out and move away, why bother hanging around an area where nobody’s buying?
Drug Tests Are Part Of The Rules, And Rules Help People In Recovery Stay Recovered
To an outsider, the rules of a sober home can seem strict — maybe even annoyingly so. While the list of rules can vary widely from house to house, they’re there for good reason. Rules help drug addicts transition from a life of drug abuse to one of sobriety. Rules are there for support, safety, and guidance, and add structure to lives where structure hasn’t been a thing for a while.
Drug tests in sober homes are part of the rules just like no drug use or violence is part of the rules — they’re all there to keep people safe and help them recover from addiction. Rules also keep people accountable — again, accountability is a major part of successful recovery.
Here’s an example: it’s made pretty clear in most sober homes that any substance use is grounds for eviction. If a resident is feeling drug cravings, knowing that the rules forbid certain behaviors allows the resident to play the consequences of their actions out in their heads, recognizing that giving in to their cravings could get them kicked out.
Instead of using substances, the resident can go to their house manager and talk about what they’re experiencing. This results in the resident being able to continue living in the house and receiving the positive support they need to stay in recovery.
Fundamentally, Drug Testing Helps Keep The “Sober” In “Sober Home”
Drug testing is one of the many measures sober living homes take to prevent drug use and protect their residents. To an outsider, drug testing can seem draconian and cruel. To a sober home resident, drug testing is simply another part of living in recovery, keeping them sober, honest, and on the right path.
Finding a sober home isn’t always easy, however. It’s often a tough hunt, requiring hours of research. That’s why we created SoberLivingNearYou.com, the largest collection of sober home listings on the web. With thousands of sober home options at your fingertips, finding a sober home to call your own has never been easier.
Start your journey towards a substance-free life with SoberLivingNearYou.com today!