Matt A. spend his childhood in Plano, Texas with his two parents, an older sister, and a dog. Overall, things were nice. Although life was pretty uneventful on Matt’s end of the culdesac, his mom struggled with alcoholism and mental illness. His parents fought a lot, but somehow, the dysfunction remained contained behind an image of picture-perfect suburbia. It wasn’t until Matt was about eight-years-old that the dysfunction and chaos finally broke free. (more…)
Challenges of Having an Alcoholic Spouse or Partner
Alcoholics often hurt family members and friends that they love by drinking too much, lying to cover it up, exhibiting violent behavior, being emotionally abusive, and more. As a result, life with an alcoholic can be unpredictable, stressful, and physically dangerous, not to mention the mental distress one experiences daily.
Choosing to stay in a relationship with an alcoholic without addressing the alcohol abuse can have lasting consequences. Often, these include mental illness, physical injuries, chronic health problems, social trauma, and financial problems.
For example, one study published in the Industrial Psychiatry Journal in 2016 found that the wives of alcoholics often suffered severe problems directly related to their husbands’ alcohol abuse, such as:
- Emotional problems like anxiety, mental disturbances, and frustration
- Health-related issues like ignoring one’s health or having sleep disturbances
- Having problems socializing and feeling ashamed of a loved one’s drinking habits
- Suffering financially
- Experiencing physical violence such as personal physical harm, assault with a weapon, or children being threatened or hurt
- Wanting to commit suicide
- Having a loved one who threatens to commit suicide or kill other family members
The study found that the most common types of issues faced by wives of alcoholics were emotional problems and social issues, with health-related problems being fairly common as well.1
Although physical violence was not experienced by all of the women surveyed in the study, a report from the World Health Organization found that more than half of all U.S. assaults by one partner against another occurred after the perpetrator had been drinking. Research shows heavy drinking is a common predictor of intimate partner violence and incidents of domestic violence.2
How People Deal With a Partner’s Alcoholism
As a result of these challenges, people often develop unhealthy ways of coping with their partner’s alcoholism. Some people may choose to withdraw by prioritizing the interests of other family members instead, leaving the alcoholic alone when he or she is intoxicated, or finding other interests or activities to stay preoccupied. Although this may work for a short time, in the meantime, the addict’s drinking behaviors worsen and the person becomes more distant and removed from friends and loved ones.
Partners of alcoholics may also try to cope with their loved one’s alcoholism by tolerating and ignoring it. For example, they may:
- Make excuses for the alcoholic’s behavior
- Get another job to compensate for financial issues
- Pretend that everything is okay although it’s not
People who respond this way are often too scared to make a change, feel hopeless, or are in denial that the alcoholic has a serious drinking problem. Although avoiding the issue may work short-term, things are bound to get worse.
Another common way family members deal with a loved one’s alcoholism is by engaging in self-harming behaviors, such as:
- Abusing alcohol or drugs
- Mistreating the children in the household
- Spending excessive amounts of money
- Having an affair
- Attempting suicide
These coping strategies cause direct harm to the family members involved. If a person chooses to react to their partner’s drinking in these ways, he or she may be more likely to develop a substance use disorder.
Are Partners of Alcoholics More Likely to Become Alcoholics Themselves?
Some people may feel like they are unable to deal with the effects of their partner’s drinking and turn to drug or alcohol abuse to numb the emotional or physical pain. This is one unhealthy coping strategy with serious, life-altering and long-term consequences. Alcohol abuse can quickly turn into full-blown addiction and it is fairly common for spouses, partners, or even children of alcoholics to adopt this behavior.3
Partners of alcoholics may be more likely to become alcoholics themselves as they struggle to cope with the harmful side effects and challenges of living with someone with a severe alcohol use disorder.
Lasting Side Effects of Having an Alcoholic Partner
The effects of alcohol addiction aren’t just immediately contained to the person who drinks. Its effects are far-reaching and can harm everyone involved. Some of these effects can be long-lasting and carry over into other relationships because they change the way a person behaves and interacts with the world. Here are a few common examples of the lasting side effects of having an alcoholic partner.
- Codependency – People who live with an addicted loved one often deny their own needs and repress their emotions to focus on surviving. They often become caretakers for their addicted loved one, and in the process, they lose touch with their own sense of self. This can lead to low self-esteem, substance abuse, and a victim mentality. By continually rescuing the alcoholic from his or her own decisions, the person feels needed and develops a sense of satisfaction from it. They begin to seek out those same needs in other friendships and relationships, leading to other, unhealthy and codependent relationships.4
- Relationship problems – Addiction can have a lasting impact on family relationships. It often causes emotional issues, dissatisfaction in spousal relationships, and estrangement between children and parents. It can also result in short-term or permanent separations or divorce, essentially breaking up a family due to issues that have gone on without resolution.
- Enabling – Many people with alcoholic partners also exhibit enabling behaviors, which allow the person to act irresponsibly by shielding them from the consequences of their alcohol abuse.5 For example, a person may keep secrets about their alcoholic partner’s behavior simply to keep the peace, make excuses about his or her behavior, bail him or her out of trouble, and take over responsibilities to keep the household functioning well. These behaviors don’t help the alcoholic get better. Instead, they enable the harmful drinking behaviors.
- Mental health issues – Staying in a relationship with an alcoholic is very emotionally taxing. It can cause a great deal of stress that can lead to ongoing mental health issues such as trauma, anxiety, depression, loss of self-worth, feelings of hopelessness, or suicidal thoughts. Social isolation due to an alcoholic’s drinking can also contribute to these problems.
- Financial problems – An alcoholic partner’s irresponsible decisions may also lead to serious long-term financial problems such as extreme debt, bankruptcy, or homelessness. These could be a result of the person losing a job, maxing out credit cards, neglecting to pay the bills, or paying medical bills for physical injuries or health problems related to the alcohol abuse.
- Drug or alcohol addiction – People who choose to cope with a spouse’s or partner’s alcoholism by self-medicating with alcohol or drugs may also find themselves going down the same path. By using addictive substances to deal with difficult life circumstances, individuals may develop harmful habits that can quickly get out of control and become full-fledged addictions.
How to Help an Alcoholic Spouse or Partner
Helping an alcoholic spouse or partner is difficult but ignoring the problem isn’t going to help either. Ultimately, it’s up to the addicted individual to decide to get help. No one else can do it for them.
If your spouse or partner is struggling with severe alcohol use disorder, it may be time to host an intervention. A professional interventionist can help you choose a time and place in which you can safely and effective talk to your partner about his or her drinking habits. The interventionist can also coach you on what to say, how to say it, and provide suggestions for helpful addiction treatment options.
If you don’t feel comfortable talking to your partner via an in-person intervention, you may also consider writing an intervention letter. In this letter, you can calmly state your concerns without being accusatory, clearly explain how you will respond if he or she refuses to make changes, and provide a few treatment options.
In some cases, an alcoholic spouse may refuse to accept help or make any changes, which can leave a partner with no other choice other than to leave or separate temporarily. This may be especially true if children are involved.
Helping an addicted spouse or partner is tricky, but there is professional help available if you need it. Call Nova Recovery Center today to learn more about our addiction treatment options. We can connect you with a professional interventionist and recommend appropriate addiction treatment services for your addicted loved one. Please call (512) 605-2955 to speak with a caring member of our staff today.
The month of October is a great time to help a friend or a loved one who is suffering from substance abuse or mental illness. This month full of annual observances that are dedicated to promoting prevention and awareness of these issues, and chances are, you know someone who is affected by substance abuse, either directly or indirectly.
Students in recovery face significant challenges in a college campus environment, but they shouldn’t have to choose between their recovery and a college education. Collegiate Recovery Programs (CRPs) across the country provide support and resources to help students in recovery balance their sobriety and education while still having an authentic college experience.
All Collegiate Recovery Programs are different and some are provided through the counseling center, student affairs, or wellness center, while others are student-run organizations and clubs. Although each CRP is different, they all offer valuable benefits and opportunities for students in recovery and offer complementary services for students who are enrolled in sober living programs.
If you recently completed an addiction treatment program and you’re ready to continue your college education or start it for the first time, finding a CRP may help you succeed. According to the Association of Recovery in Higher Education (ARHE), many colleges and universities offer collegiate recovery programs specially designed for students like you.1
Here is a comprehensive guide to America’s college recovery programs. For more details about each CRP, please contact the individual program.
College Recovery Programs in the Southwest Region
University of Texas at Tyler
The UT Tyler Center for Students in Recovery offers 12-Step meetings for all kinds of addictions, SMART Recovery Meetings, Refuge Recovery, a student workspace, and fun sober activities for students on campus.
Sam Houston State University
The Sam Houston State University Kats 4 Recovery (K4R) was originally founded in 2015 but relaunched in 2018. KR4 meets twice monthly and is a place where students can learn about recovery, participate in sober activities, and spread awareness about addiction.
University of Texas, Arlington
The Center for Students in Recovery at the University of Texas, Arlington is a place where sober students can come together and support one another. The program provides a weekly peer support group, community events, monthly sober social activities, and space to hang out between classes.
University of North Texas
Founded in 2014, the University of North Texas Collegiate Recovery Program is a peer-based program that provides support group meetings, recovery housing, educational seminars, formalized training in the addiction treatment and prevention fields, and opportunities for community engagement.
University of Houston
The Cougars in Recovery at the University of Houston provides a safe and sober environment with weekly peer process groups, annual collegiate recovery conferences, and an outdoor adventure learning experience each semester. Students also have access to recovery housing, scholarship opportunities, on-campus 12-step meetings, recovery tailgating and more.
University of Texas at San Antonio
The University of Texas at San Antonio Center for Collegiate Recovery offers a variety of recovery meetings including 12-Step meetings and SMART Recovery meetings. It also provides peer mentoring, recovery coaches, hosts sober activities, and works with other campus organizations to provide education about addiction and recovery.
University of Texas at Dallas
The University of Texas at Dallas Collegiate Recovery Program was founded in 2014 and provides students in recovery with one-on-one support from a licensed professional, recovery meetings, sober activities, supportive peers, and volunteer/service opportunities.
University of Texas at Austin
The Center for Students in Recovery at the University of Texas at Austin was founded in 2004. It provides several different weekly support group meetings, sober activities, scholarships, service opportunities, and opportunities to participate in community-wide events in Austin.
Texas Tech University
The Center for Collegiate Recovery Communities (CRC) at Texas Tech University was established in 1986. The program offers weekly seminars for academic credit, a Celebration of Recovery each Thursday at 7 p.m., academic advising and counseling, study abroad opportunities, scholarships, sober tailgating, sober dorms, staff mentoring and peer accountability, and more.
Texas Christian University
The Texas Christian University Collegiate Recovery Community provides individual counseling sessions, weekly open meetings, sober events, sober tailgating, monthly sober events on and off-campus, and service opportunities in the community.
Texas A&M University
The Aggie Recovery Community at Texas A&M University facilitates recovery services on and off-campus and provides a safe, sober environment for students struggling with addiction or who are in recovery from addiction. The program also offers a Recovery Services Guide, 12-Step recovery meetings, sober activities, programming and education for National Recovery Month, and an annual sober tailgate.
Southern Methodist University
The Southern Methodist University Collegiate Recovery Community provides weekly recovery and wellbeing meetings as well as details about community-wide services for students who are addicted to drugs and alcohol or who are in recovery.
The Baylor Recovery Program offers the Beauchamp Addiction Recovery Center (the BARC), which is a dedicated sober space for students in recovery and their allies. The program also offers support from recovery coaches and advocates, a variety of recovery meetings, sober social events, and opportunities to travel to recovery-oriented conferences.
College Recovery Programs in the Pacific Region
University of California at Santa Barbara
The Gauchos for Recovery at the University of California at Santa Barbara is designed for students who have been indirectly or directly affected by the substance abuse of family members and/or friends. The program provides a safe and sober space for students, a supportive peer community, recovery-oriented meetings and events, leaership and service opportunities, and professional counseling and support services.
Southern Oregon University
Southern Oregon University’s Collegiate Recovery Program, called the Community of Recovery in Education (CORE), was established in 2010. The program offers a vibrant sober community, weekly recovery support groups, individual counseling, and academic planning assistance for sober success inside and outside of the classroom.
Santa Clara University
The Collegiate Recovery Program at Santa Clara University is housed in the Wellness Center and offers a safe space for students in recovery or who are seeking recovery from addiction. The program provides opportunities for social engagement during open hours, support group meetings, sober social events, volunteer opportunities, and community events.
Oregon State University
The Oregon State University Collegiate Recovery Community includes sober housing for students in recovery and a 24/7 clubhouse with recovery meetings, study space, coffee and other refreshments, staff support, academic advising, sober events, and a tightly-knit community of students in recovery.
Loyola Marymount University
Loyola Marymount University offers several different recovery groups for current students. Students in recovery may choose to attend on-campus AA or NA meetings, Al-Anon meetings, guided meditation, Women for Recovery, SMART Recovery meetings, or Lions for Recovery, which provides fun sober social events and activities for sober students.
The Collegiate Recovery Community at Gonzaga University provides a sober space for students known as OUR House. It offers a recovery-oriented environment and hosts open group meetings, sober events, study space, and weekly drop-in times for students to speak with staff and receive support.
University of California, Davis
Aggie RISE (Recover, Inspire, Support, Empower) is the University of California, Davis Collegiate Recovery Program. The program welcomes students in all stages of recovery and offers weekly group recovery meetings, 12-Step meetings, and access to related support such as intervention services.
University of California, Los Angeles
The UCLA Collegiate Recovery Program offers a comfortable Recovery Lounge for students in recovery. Also, the Bruins for Recovery (B4R), a registered student organization at UCLA, provides campus meetings and support groups, sober events, academic support, and more.
College Recovery Programs in the Mountain Region
University of Utah
Ram Recovery at the University of Utah is a small registered student organization offering two general recovery meetings per week. As the needs of the sober student population grow, so will the program. Although there are no program requirements for members, the staff does ask that students have 24 hours of continuous sobriety before attending a meeting or event.
University of Nevada, Reno
The Nevada Recovery and Prevention Program (NRAP) at the University of Nevada, Reno is designed for students who are in long-term recovery or who have chosen to live a sober lifestyle for cultural, religious, or other reasons. The program offers recovery groups and meetings, wellness groups, coaching, and a welcoming sober space for studying and hanging out.
University of Denver
The University of Denver’s Collegiate Recovery Community offers a community lounge, sober social events, recovery housing, support meetings, peer mentoring, and educational seminars and events.
University of Colorado at Boulder
The University of Colorado at Boulder’s Collegiate Recovery Center (CUCRC) offers a supportive community of sober students and a lounge for studying and relaxing. It also provides sober social events and activities, a space for on-campus support group meetings, recovery coaching from professional staff, peer mentorship program, sober housing, service opportunities, and a referral network for local treatment and recovery services.
Colorado State University
Colorado State University’s Ram Recovery was established in 2017 and provides support for students in all phases of recovery from various addictions. The program provides weekly recovery meetings, peer mentorship, sober events, group trips, and referrals for treatment and recovery services.
College Recovery Programs in the Midwest Region
University of Wisconsin, Madison
Live Free is the University of Wisconsin’s peer-to-peer student recovery organization. It’s open to students in recovery, students who simply want a substance-free place to hang out, or students who have been indirectly affected by addiction.
University of Nebraska at Omaha
The UNO Recovery Community is the Collegiate Recovery Program at the University of Nebraska at Omaha. It is a new program that is intended to provide recovery support through campus and community by providing a safe space for students in recovery.
University of Minnesota
Recovery on Campus (ROC) is a community of students in recovery and their allies. It offers a vibrant social scene without any of the drinking or drugs. Student members also engage in weekly recovery meetings and participate in organized social events on and off-campus.
University of Michigan
The University of Michigan’s Collegiate Recovery Program provides holistic support to students who are in recovery from drug and alcohol addiction. The program provides peer involvement with other sober students, sober events on and off-campus, recovery support and accountability, service opportunities, academic wellness and support resources, and access to a comfortable sober lounge.
University of Iowa
The Collegiate Recovery Program at the University of Iowa is designed to help students in all stages of addiction recovery through social support, community building, academic support, sober activities, advocacy, outreach, and access to treatment services on and off-campus.
Ohio State University
The Collegiate Recovery Community at Ohio State University was established in 2013. The program offers recovery housing, peer support, treatment referrals, professional support staff, on-campus support group meetings, social events, wellness workshops, individualized recovery plans, and much more.
The StepUp Program at Augsburg University is the oldest and largest residential Collegiate Recovery Community in America. The program addresses both mental health issues and addiction recovery and is led by experienced licensed counselors. On-campus services include sober housing, weekly individual meetings and group meetings, a variety of on-campus support services, and access to a strong alumni support system.
St. Cloud State University
The St. Cloud State University Recovery Resource Center offers a dedicated space where students in recovery can feel supported and safe. The program also offers sober on-campus housing, weekly support group meetings, clinical services, scholarships, sober events and activities, peer-to-peer accountability, referrals, and community service opportunities.
The Collegiate Recovery Community at Purdue University is still growing and members are working with the university to establish a dedicated sober space for students. Otherwise, the program hosts weekly recovery meetings, monthly social events, and ally training for other members of the university community.
R.I.S.E. (Recovery to Inspire, Share and Empower) is the official collegiate recovery community of Ohio University. The program offers two support group meetings each week, which are open to all sober curious students, students in recovery, or students who have been indirectly affected by the substance abuse of friends or loved ones. R.I.S.E. also provides a dedicated space where students can hang out and meet other sober people.
Minneapolis Community and Technical College
The Collegiate Recovery Program at Minneapolis Community and Technical College was founded in 2017 and is for students in recovery who are looking for support. It gives students access to a licensed counselor and Recovery Support Specialists on staff and provides year-round recovery-focused activities based on the needs of the sober student population.
Michigan State University
Michigan State University’s Collegiate Recovery Community provides a safe and supportive on-campus community for sober students. The program provides individualized recovery planning, recovery housing, a 24/7 student lounge, staff and peer support and accountability, social events, community service opportunities, wellness and life skills workshops, and referrals.
Lorain County Community College
The CARE Center for Addiction Recovery at Lorain County Community College provides access to campus and community-wide addiction treatment services and recovery services for students. It also provides education about addiction and recovery, opportunities to meet and socialize with other sober students, and individual counseling.
Kent State University
The Kent State University Collegiate Recovery Community offers support services for KSU students in recovery, including a sober lounge space on campus, regular support group meetings, group runs, and learning opportunities that encourage students to live a healthy and active lifestyle in recovery. Students in recovery also have access to SMART Recovery and AA meetings on campus.
Iowa State University
The Collegiate Recovery Community at Iowa State University was established in 2018 and a peer-led recovery organization formed in the fall of 2019. Together, the two provide recovery-oriented support with community-building, peer support, substance-free campus events, and access to campus and community resources.
Indiana University Purdue University Indianapolis
The Collegiate Recovery Community at IUPUI provides sober social support and a referral network to local recovery resources. The program also offers weekly peer support groups for a variety of types of addictions, awareness events, social outings, and volunteer opportunities. One-on-one recovery coaching sessions are also available to students in recovery.
Indiana University Bloomington
The Collegiate Recovery Community at Indiana University Bloomington offers individual counseling, case management, connections and referrals to local and campus resources, and a supportive community of sober students who are in long-term recovery.
Illinois State University
The Sober Redbirds at Illinois State University is intended for students in recovery, students considering a substance-free life, allies, or students who have been impacted by friends’ or loved ones’ substance abuse. The Collegiate Recovery Community, a subgroup of the Sober Redbirds, is a peer-support based program that offers many different services including recovery coaching, drop-in lounge hours, relapse prevention and emotional regulation assistance, sober networking and social activities, advocacy and community service opportunities, and referrals to treatment services.
DePaul University’s Collegiate Recovery Community provides weekly support group meetings on-campus and sober housing accommodations on a case-by-case basis. Sober students also have access to the Substance Abuse Prevention Specialist on an ongoing basis for support, advocacy, and resources.
Central Michigan University
Central Michigan University students in recovery can utilize the services provided by the Central Michigan Collegiate Recovery Education and Wellness (CMCREW) to maintain their sobriety while in college. The program provides a variety of services including individual evaluations, recovery coaching, peer-led support groups, and classes for students whose behaviors may indicate a developing problem.
Case Western Reserve University
The Collegiate Recovery House at Case Western Reserve University is available to current students in undergraduate, graduate, and professional programs. The program offers a variety of recovery support services, including fellowship with other sober students, referrals to specialized services, a weekly family-style meal, ongoing clinical support and case management, and sober housing.
College Recovery Programs in the Northeast Region
Sacred Heart University
The Sacred Heart Collegiate Recovery Program was established in 2019. This new program is small but has plans to grow. Currently, it provides students in recovery with a sober lounge where they can relax, study, and meet other sober students. The program also provides weekly 12-Step meetings, all-inclusive recovery meetings, and meditation meetings on campus, with access to support staff members.
Ramapo College of New Jersey
The Roadrunner Collegiate Recovery Program at Ramapo College of New Jersey provides a strong foundation for sobriety during the college years and beyond. The program provides individual assistance from allies and mentors, meeting space for mutual support groups, assistance finding supportive sober housing, connections with treatment resources on and off-campus, and provide sober activities and events, among many other things.
University of Vermont
The Catamount Recovery Program at the University of Vermont provides a supportive college experience for students in recovery. Students participate in sober activities, events, meetings, service opportunities, advocacy, and receive one-on-one support. Recovery-based housing is also available for students in recovery.
University of Southern Maine
The Recovery Oriented Campus Center (ROCC) at the University of Southern Maine is a collegiate recovery center that connects students in recovery with other like-minded people. The program provides sober coaching, mentorships, peer groups, community events, recovery planning, health and wellness resources, service opportunities, and more.
University of Pittsburgh
The Panthers for Recovery is the University of Pittsburgh’s Collegiate Recovery Program. It offers student-led support groups, peer connection and social networking, recovery resources (on and off-campus), academic and financial aid resources, substance-free social events and programs, and a dedicated lounge space for sober students.
University of Massachusetts
The Collegiate Recovery Community at the University of Massachusetts offers a variety of services for sober students including referrals to meetings and support services, peer support, substance-free activities, career planning assistance, and the Fresh & Sober support program which is a support network and mentoring service for students in recovery.
University of Hartford
HawkLife is the University of Hartford’s Collegiate Recovery Community, dedicated to supporting students who want to live a healthier, substance-free life. The community is made up of students who have committed to a drug and alcohol-free lifestyle. Many of these students identify as being in recovery while others simply choose to abstain.
University of Connecticut
The UConn Recovery Community at the University of Connecticut provides students with access to sober housing options, weekly anonymous meetings, social activities and events, and recovery-oriented events within the community.
University at Albany
The Collegiate Recovery Program at the University at Albany is a part of the Middle Earth Peer Assistance Program of Counseling and Psychological Services (CAPS). It is led by professional staff and student organizers and provides self-help and mutual aid groups on campus, counseling and support services, and peer-to-peer support and training. All students in recovery from addiction, mental health problems, or related issues are welcome.
The College of New Jersey
The College of New Jersey’s Collegiate Recovery Program meets weekly at an on-campus recovery lounge. Students meet to discuss addiction and recovery issues, plan and engage in advocacy, and engage in social activities with each other and the community. TCNJ also offers recovery housing and scholarships for students in recovery.
Saint Joseph’s University
The Flock at Saint Joseph’s University is a collegiate recovery program that provides holistic recovery support services for students in recovery and their allies. The Flock meets weekly for group meetings, hosts various workshops to raise awareness about addiction on campus, plans educational and community outreach events, and provides access to local resources for students in recovery.
The Rutgers Recovery House at Rutgers University was the first sober housing option for college students in the U.S. when it opened in 1988. The sober community of students that live in the house offers a supportive community, counseling services, and academic and career planning assistance. The Recovery House also remains completely anonymous without signage to protect the privacy of the students who live there.
The Clean Cats is the Pratt college recovery community. The community supports students in recovery from various addictions by 24-hour access to the Clean Cats space, weekly recovery meetings, celebrations of recovery anniversaries, early registration, recovery review and planning, and a variety of different types of support group meetings on campus.
Penn State University
The Collegiate Recovery Community at Penn State University connects students with recovery-related services and helps them develop healthy and sustainable habits. The program offers lunch every Wednesday on-campus and weekly recovery meetings every Friday night.
Northampton Community College
Northampton Community College Collegiate Recovery Program is a voluntary and anonymous community of students in recovery. With programming that welcomes any type of recovery path, the CRP offers weekly meetings, provides volunteer opportunities, facilitates mindfulness/meditation practice, organizes field trips and conferences, and hosts monthly 12-Step beginner meetings open to all students.
Montclair State University
The Red Hawk Recovery Program at Montclair State University helps students learn how to balance their educational responsibilities while maintaining their sobriety and having an authentic college experience. Services include recovery coaching, counseling, recovery housing, self-help groups, recovery support groups, service opportunities, and more.
Monmouth University’s Students in Recovery Club has a growing collegiate recovery scene. The club offers weekly support group meetings, social events, social activities, and advocacy work.
The Collegiate Recovery Program at Mitchell College was established in 2017. The program provides students in recovery with a safe and supportive sober environment in which they can begin or continue their college education. It also offers sober housing, social events and outings, student support groups, and opportunities to engage with recovery support services within the local community.
The Collegiate Recovery Program at Fairfield University helps students learn how to balance their education with their recovery, pursue their personal and academic goals, and make lifelong friends in the process. An advisory board oversees the CRP program which provides many services including AA 12-Step meetings on campus with transportation to meetings off-campus, ACoA meetings, an on-campus recovery lounge, recovery housing, counseling, spirituality retreats, sober recreational activities, and much more.
Community College of Philadelphia
The Office of Collegiate Recovery at the Community College of Philadelphia offers several recovery support resources for sober students, such as weekly peer-to-peer support group meetings, weekly individual coaching sessions, weekly recovery meetings, fun sober activities on and off-campus, and referrals to recovery-based community organizations.
California University of Pennsylvania
The Alcohol and Other Drug (AOD) Prevention Awareness Recovery Center at the California University of Pennsylvania offers support, services, resources, and referrals for Cal U students in recovery. The PARC is a dedicated sober lounge where students can relax, study, and hang out as well as receive information about local 12-Step and recovery support group meetings in the local area.
The Early Recovery Group (EROB) is Brown University’s Collegiate Recovery Community, offering weekly meetings where students can safely and openly share about recovery-related issues in a supportive environment. Brown University also has sober housing and a student club called SoBear where students can participate in fun social activities with other sober students.
The Boston University Collegiate Recovery Program connects BU students in recovery to a network of sober peers, supports personal, academic, and professional student achievement, and educates the campus community about students in recovery. The group is anonymous and members participate in fun events, organizational meetings, and have access to substance-free housing options.
College Recovery Programs in the Mid-Atlantic Region
West Virginia University
The Mountaineers for Recovery is West Virginia University’s Collegiate Recovery Community. The student organization provides a safe, substance-free environment for students in recovery and their allies. Sober students can also utilize Serenity Place, a dedicated sober space for studying, weekly meditation, arts and crafts, and special events like cooking classes, sober jams, and more.
Washington and Lee University
The Washingtonian Society at Washington and Lee University is a support network for students in recovery who want support while they’re in college or who want to socialize with other sober students. Complete sobriety is not required from members and the group meets weekly for a shared meal and fellowship to encourage healthy relationship-building.
The Recovery Community at Virginia Tech is an abstinence-based group that offers on-campus recovery meetings every Monday night with pizza and discussion. On Thursdays, the group meets at a local cafe for coffee and conversation and members are also invited to participate in social events on weekends. The goal of this recovery community is to provide a positive environment and social network that will support students’ sobriety and overall quality of life.
Virginia Commonwealth University
Rams in Recovery is Virginia Commonwealth University’s Collegiate Recovery Program. The program offers recovery housing, social events, group trips, scholarships, and space for recovery support meetings on campus at the Recovery Clubhouse.
University of Virginia – Hoos in Recovery (HiR)
The Hoos in Recovery (HiR) is a confidential community of students, staff, faculty, and alumni at the University of Virginia with the common goal of maintaining long-term sobriety. HiR hosts meetings at the HiR House every Wednesday night with free pizza for attendees and a recovery-related reading and discussion.
University of North Carolina at Wilmington
The Collegiate Recovery Community at the University of North Carolina at Wilmington provides an empowering and supportive community for students who are working to overcome their addiction(s). The program connects students with on and off-campus resources for recovery, sponsors fun social activities, provides personal accountability for students’ individual recovery plans, provides students with service opportunities, helps students find sober housing, and much more.
University of North Carolina at Charlotte
The Collegiate Recovery Community at the University of North Carolina at Charlotte offers recovery support via a social and therapeutic community. The program provides sober students with opportunities for group travel, educational, volunteer, and social seminars, and scholarships.
University of North Carolina at Chapel Hill
The Carolina Recovery Program at the University of North Carolina at Chapel Hill offers weekly peer-led groups and staff-led programs to foster a recovery-based community of individuals on campus. Other services include an alumni mentor program, academic support workshops, sober activities like dinners, outdoor activities, community service projects, and group travel to nationwide recovery conferences.
University of North Carolina at Asheville
The Collegiate Recovery Community Program at the University of North Carolina at Asheville provides a variety of services geared toward students in recovery, including weekly check-in meetings, connections to campus resources, academic support, recovery-oriented events on campus, and referrals for counseling, psychiatric care, and medical services.
University of Maryland, College Park
The Collegiate Recovery Community at the University of Maryland, College Park was established in 2015. The program is small but continually growing and it offers substance-free housing for students, a dedicated sober space called the Recovery Drop-In Space, as well as programming options like social events and community engagement. Students can also receive counseling services, evaluations, and treatment referrals through Substance Use Intervention and Treatment (SUIT) staff on campus.
University of Delaware
The University of Delaware’s Collegiate Recovery Community is designed to help students who are actively pursuing a life of recovery or who have been affected by a loved one’s substance abuse. The program provides a safe and confidential environment where students can discuss recovery-related issues and establish a social support system with sober activities and events around campus.
The Tigers in Recovery is Towson University’s Collegiate Recovery Program for students in recovery from substance use disorder. The program offers alcohol and drug-free social events, peer-to-peer support, advocacy, and collaborative group events with other student organizations.
University of North Carolina Greensboro
The Spartan Recovery Program at the University of North Carolina Greensboro provides free services to UNCG students in recovery. The program’s recovery services include recreational activities, recovery coaching, peer support, monthly celebration of recovery events, roommate matching, referrals, and personal, professional, and academic development.
The Collegiate Recovery Program at Radford University was founded in 2016 with a mission to provide a safe, comfortable environment where students in recovery could thrive. Student members have access to the Recovery Lounge on campus where they can attend weekly support group meetings and gain access to individual counseling services through the office of Substance Abuse and Violence Education Support Services (SAVES).
North Carolina A&T State University
The Collegiate Recovery Community at North Carolina A&T State University offers a safe space where sober students can meet with one another, have fun, and receive recovery support. The program also provides weekly support group meetings (AA, NA, RM, and Al-Anon), service opportunities, and social events like game nights and sober tailgating.
Nash Community College
The Nash Community College Collegiate Recovery Program was established in 2015 and is a part of the services offered through the Student Wellness Center. The program provides weekly coffee socials for members, allies, and prospective members as well as a weekly closed meeting. Sober students can also take advantage of therapeutic services from licensed professional addiction specialists on staff and other holistic health services offered through the Student Wellness Center.
George Washington University
The George Washington University Collegiate Recovery Community supports students in recovery from all kinds of addictions by hosting organized weekly meetings and events at the Serenity Shack, a designated sober space on campus. The program also offers substance-free housing, sober events and outings, leadership and professional development opportunities, and a strong, supportive peer community.
East Carolina University
The Collegiate Recovery Center at East Carolina University serves students in recovery or who want help overcoming their addiction(s). By providing social and educational opportunities that incorporate the needs of individuals in addiction recovery, this program helps students thrive both academically and personally.
Appalachian State University
The Collegiate Recovery Program at Appalachian State University offers a recovery group meeting every week for students who are in recovery from any kind of addiction. Students can receive on-campus support with weekly meetings, relapse prevention assistance, opportunities to make sober peer connections, and academic assistance.
College Recovery Programs in the Southeast Region
Vanderbilt University offers the Vanderbilt Recovery Support (VRS) program, which provides a supportive community for students in recovery. This collegiate recovery program offers biweekly meetings, monthly seminars, recovery housing, and a support group for friends and family.
University of Tampa
The University of Tampa Recovery Community was founded in 2016 and is offered through the university wellness services. This collegiate recovery program provides weekly meetings, a dedicated space where students can host recovery groups or sober study groups, housing assistance, and opportunities to connect with other sober students.
University of Southern Mississippi
The University of Southern Mississippi’s Collegiate Recovery Community is a part of the university’s Student Health Services. Members of the recovery community are invited to use the Blue House, which is a safe and supportive space for students in recovery. The program offers weekly AA meetings, NA meetings, and CRC support groups at the Blue House and members also participate in activities like sober tailgating, holiday potlucks, and seminars.
University of South Carolina
Gamecock Recovery at the University of South Carolina is a student organization that helps students in recovery achieve personal, educational, and professional success by providing a positive and sober community environment. Gamecock Recovery provides weekly family and friends support meetings, All Recovery meetings, recovery meditation, SMART Recovery meetings, and more.
University of Kentucky
The Collegiate Recovery Community at the University of Kentucky offers open recovery meetings, friends and family meetings, and referrals to local treatment services, recovery resources, and support groups around Lexington.
University of Central Florida
The Collegiate Recovery Community at the University of Central Florida helps students stay sober by providing a private study space, recovery coaching, substance use counseling, fellowship and community, recovery-centered academic and career advising, and local support meetings.
University of Arkansas
Razorback Recovery at the University of Arkansas supports students in their recovery by providing a variety of services including weekly meetings, peer support, sober tailgating, social activities, scholarships, advocacy, resources, and referrals.
University of Alabama at Birmingham
The University of Alabama at Birmingham Collegiate Recovery Community offers services that promote holistic health and well-being. The recovery program includes a recovery conference, an equine-assisted wellness workshop, outdoor day trips and camping trips, sober social events, academic support, and community events like cookouts, film screenings, and recovery walks.
University of Alabama
The University of Alabama’s Collegiate Recovery and Intervention Services supports students in recovery or who are considering it. The program offers a sober peer community, sober tailgating, local outreach, scholarships, guest speakers, a monthly newsletter for families, and community-wide events.
University of Georgia
The Collegiate Recovery Community at the University of Georgia was established in 2013. The program provides a supportive environment where students in recovery can receive peer support and other recovery support resources like weekly meetings, personal recovery programs, community service projects, and more.
Mississippi State University
The Mississippi State University Collegiate Recovery Community provides a safe haven for recovering students with peer accountability, opportunities to socialize with like-minded students, service opportunities, and recovery-focused academic advising, tutoring, and support.
Kennesaw State University
The Kennesaw State University Collegiate Recovery Program helps students connect with sober peers and access sobriety resources that will help them maintain their sobriety. Recovery support services offered include addiction assessments, referrals and treatment recommendations, individual counseling, recovery meetings, sober housing, and scholarships.
Jacksonville State University
The Collegiate Recovery Program at Jacksonville State University is available for qualified students who apply and are accepted. Members attend weekly seminars and recovery meetings, “Birthday Night” meetings, receive academic advisement, maintain a required GPA, actively participate in a recovery program, participate in community service projects, and are eligible for recovery-oriented scholarships.
Georgia Southern University
The Georgia Southern University (GSU) Center for Addiction Recovery was established in 2008. Students who want to join the program have to be sober for at least six months and have three letters of recommendation to apply. Students who are involved in the program attend weekly seminars, attend recovery events, receive individualized academic advising and early registration, and they are eligible for recovery scholarships.
Georgia Institute of Technology
The Georgia Tech Collegiate Recovery Program provides a safe and supportive environment for students who have chosen to live a sober lifestyle. The program offers social interaction with other sober students, service opportunities, opportunities to raise awareness about addiction and recovery, and sober events and outings.
College of Charleston
The Collegiate Recovery Program at the College of Charleston offers weekly recovery meetings in the CRP lounge, 12-Step meetings on and off-campus, and weekly open campus meetings that invite sober curious students to engage in the recovery community. Students also have opportunities to participate in community service projects.
The Collegiate Recovery Community at Auburn University was established in 2010. It helps students achieve long-term sobriety by offering weekly AA meetings on campus, recovery nights every Friday, and study seminars each Sunday. Participating students need to have at least six months sustained sobriety and students who are not yet stable in recovery can receive assistance.
We hope this guide helps you find a college or university that provides a safe, supportive, and empowering environment where you can achieve your personal and professional goals while maintaining your sobriety.
If you’d like more information on our addiction treatment and recovery support services, please call (512) 605-2955 to speak with a Nova Recovery Center representative today.
As of August 1st, the SEC officially lifted its ban on stadium-wide alcohol sales with some restrictions. With just a few weeks of the 2019-20 college football season behind us, we have yet to see the consequences of the SEC’s decision to loosen restrictions on alcohol sales. (more…)