Why you haven’t failed if you relapse

Addiction recovery is a process – one that often involves setbacks – so don’t give up if you relapse or slip. It doesn’t mean you’re a failure or that you’ll never reach your goal. Each relapse is an opportunity to learn and recommit to sobriety, so you’ll be less likely to stumble in the future.

What to do if you relapse


  • Take yourself away from where you relapsed and throw away the alcohol or substance.
  • Don’t forget that a small setback, such as one drink or fix, doesn’t have to mean a total relapse.
  • Think back to the last time you were using heavily. Did it help or hinder you?
  • Remind yourself that, no matter what has happened, you still haven’t reached your ultimate rock bottom [Link to rock bottom blog post] – death. Ask yourself if that’s what you want to happen.
  • Phone your counsellor, sponsor or a good friend immediately.
  • Call Red Umbrella to return to, or try for the first time, professional treatment.
  • Always get professional medical help and never try a sudden detox on your own.
  • If full treatment is too expensive, at least call Red Umbrella to arrange a medical detox straight away.
  • Don’t let shame, guilt or blame stop you from taking the road to recovery. All our staff at Red Umbrella have relapsed on their recovery journeys, and so have nearly all addicts who are now living a happy and sober life.
  • Seek help. You need support to keep you on the right track.

How we can help you recover after relapse


If you have been in treatment before, it is probably not a good idea to return to the same facility. Some people go back time and time again, seeking familiarity, but in fact a setback is not the time to return to what you know (you did that by relapsing). This is time for a new approach with a different treatment programme.

Call us and let’s talk about what happened and the treatment you were in before. Let’s identify what’s going wrong, find a new approach and get your recovery back on track immediately. We can also take a long look at planning your future rehabilitation.

Contact us now on +44 (0)300 002 0061 or send a message through our live chat facility so we can help you in your quest for sobriety.