You’ve probably seen them on Facebook, Twitter or Instagram… Photos and posts about a random “holiday” you’ve never heard of, or celebrated before, like “National Dog Day”, or “Sibling Day” …
But how about the even more obscure days, weeks or months of celebrations…?
For example, January 4th is “National Spaghetti Day”, the first week of October is “National Baby Swimming Week”, and May is “Zombie Awareness Month.”
It seems like there’s a day, month or week for anyone and anything. But as silly or strange as some of these celebrations or events may seem, in some strange way, they can
The month of September honors something neither silly nor strange, but something that brings people from all walks of life together.
September is National Recovery Month.
Recovery Month aims to increase awareness and understanding of mental health and substance use disorders in hopes of encouraging individuals in need of treatment and recovery services to seek help. It’s a month to spread the positive message that people can and do recover, to recognize the dedicated workers who provide the prevention, treatment, and recovery support services that help make recovery possible, and to celebrate the individuals who have fought for and reclaimed their lives and are living happily in long-term recovery.
Substance use disorder is a disease often misunderstood and regarded with great stigma.
So, this September we are all being called to end gatekeeping and to welcome everyone to recovery. We do this by of what recovery means and looks like for people with different experiences, to support, and and programs.
2021 National Recovery Month
“Recovery is for Everyone: Every Person, Every Family, Every Community.”
It can be tempting to characterize recovery as a universal experience, but our community is proof that there are as many pathways to, and ways to sustain recovery, as there are people. Our strength is our diversity. By expanding traditional, limited conceptions of recovery, we enrich everyone’s experience. Mental health and substance use disorder are not one-size-fit all conditions, nor do they have the same affect or impact on everyone. Looking beyond our individual experiences strengthens and supports recovery in all its forms.
Think about how the powerful foundation of mutual aid, peer support, and adaptability in the recovery community helps to save lives, reinforce protective factors and build resiliency… The connections built in recovery are life-altering — to honor those, in every form, is a huge piece of sustaining recovery and in building bridges within our communities. We must shift from “I” to “we” … When we connect with open minds and hearts, we learn from one another, and create life-saving opportunities to not only heal ourselves, but also our communities. Social relationships, family support, and neighborhood connections are directly linked to wellness and recovery. We must put in the work to ensure that has the same chance at recovery. Our “I” must become our “we.”
Recovery month is a chance to reiterate the fact that regardless of barriers and roadblocks — ! This September, celebrate your and/or your loved one’s victories over substance use disorder. If you or a loved one are still active, talk about it openly. Break down the barriers, bury the stigma and shed light on what’s really going on in our country.
Recovery Month isn’t just another bizarre “holiday.” It’s absolutely one worth talking about — with the people we love, within our communities, and even on social media.
Recovery matters to millions of individuals and families… so why not recognize it!