When putting together this list of the stuff people in halfway houses say, I noticed that all of the commonly-heard things are questions. And it makes sense because, if you’ve ever lived in a halfway house, you know that you have to ask permission to do just about anything. Other questions arise out of incredulity at the behavior that your housemates display, like stealing, getting high, gossiping, or just being nasty – as in unhygienic and unclean people to live with.
So, without further ado I give you stuff that people in halfway houses say.
“Did you do your chore?” – now this could be said by someone who is well-meaning and just looking out for you, basically, holding you accountable, which we addicts and alcoholics in early recovery really need. Most likely, though, this is more like a rhetorical question; someone asks this question when they can clearly see that the chore was not done.
“Who’s f*cking dishes are in the sink?! I’m not washing them!” – this one piggybacks on the first question/statement. Living in a halfway house is like any other communal-type living situation; everyone pulls their own weight. It’s frustrating and annoying to live with lazy and/or sloppy people who don’t clean up after themselves and expect others to do it for them. To which you might hear this reply:
“It wasn’t my job or chore to …” – again, you will be living with all different kinds of folks, some lazy, some messy, and some who are so privileged and never had to do chores.
“What meeting are we going to?” – uh…it’s Monday night so, my guess would be the same meeting we always go to Monday nights! A lot of people in early recovery especially are what we like to call “shot-out” so even though your halfway house follows the same daily and weekly schedule, you will still hear people asking stupid questions. And here’s another one:
“Do we have a house meeting tonight?” – halfway houses generally have a weekly house meeting and sometimes hold impromptu meetings especially if there is an issue or some kind of drama in the house which, inevitably there will be. But, just like the outside meeting question, if it’s the designated day for your house meeting then, yes, yes you are having a house meeting tonight. Jeez!
“Who ate my peanut butter (or some other favorite food item)?!” – again, living in a halfway house with a bunch of other addicts and alcoholics means that not everyone is willing to adhere to “an honest program.” So, while you’re in halfway living, learn to deal with it.
“Who took my laundry out of the machine and just left it sitting out?!” – living in a halfway house with a bunch of selfish people will eventually have this sort of thing happen. And again and again.
“I’m on early curfew.” – no doubt you will hear this one a lot. Living in a halfway house means that you have to abide by house rules that you may have never had to deal with growing up (depending on what your parents were like) or, chances are you have been living on your own for some time and so suddenly having rules imposed upon you just doesn’t sit too well. Well, deal with it.
“Has s/he been taking their meds? Because they’ve been acting crazy lately?” – a lot of people living in halfway houses are dealing with mental health issues on top of their addiction issues. So, a lot of halfway house residents are on meds or are supposed to be on meds.
“Is s/he high?” – living with a bunch of only recently former junkies and alcoholics will make anyone suspicious of anything even slightly out of the ordinary. And with relapse a somewhat common occurrence in early recovery, you’ll find yourself wondering who’s getting high in the house.
“Can I get an overnight pass?” – this is something you’ll hear especially from your housemates who aren’t taking the suggestion to stay out of relationships in their first year of sobriety.
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