There are a lot of reasons why you can’t fraternize with the opposite sex in rehab, but the main one is because that isn’t what you’re there for. You have a disease, and you came to get treatment for that disease.
There are three main goals of every treatment center:
1. They want to provide a safe and drug free environment.
2. They want people to learn how to get clean and stay clean.
3. They advise people who leave the rehab facility to continue working out their addiction issues in some type of outpatient addiction recovery group, professional counseling or both.
Firstly, you are not there to find a boyfriend or girlfriend. That is not the point of treatment. When we get involved in a new romance we turn most of our attention outwards at the object of our desires and are left with less time and energy for necessary personal contemplation and recovery. The intense therapeutic days of rehab are no time to be thinking of anyone but yourself.
Secondly, having a rehab romance can prevent you from getting honest in group therapy because you want to present yourself in a favorable light to the object of your desire. To get any benefit from sessions, it is absolutely imperative that you be completely honest. The rules that say you can’t fraternize with the opposite sex in rehab are designed to prevent this kind of thing from happening.
Thirdly, treatment centers are also highly aware that when people are getting off drugs, their sex drive comes back with a vengeance. No one in rehab is capable of healthy attachment or healthy sexual relationships, and getting into one before you’re ready can slow your progress and possibly contribute to a relapse. A period of addiction and abuse behaviors also includes risky drug administration practices and sexual activity. In addition, many people in rehab have an undiagnosed STD that also needs attention. The last thing anyone already struggling through recovery and sobriety needs is the addition of another health complication and recovery obstacle.
Also, cross addictions are extremely common in early sobriety, and when an individual can’t refrain from having sex or beginning a romantic relationship for the 30-plus days required in drug rehab, it can be a sign of an underlying love or sex addiction.
I hear a lot of girls say “But I just don’t get along with women, I’ve always had male friends.” Men often claim the opposite. However, you can’t fraternize with the opposite sex in rehab because while you may have the purest of intentions, i.e. friendship only, that doesn’t meant that everyone else in rehab does too.
For all these reasons, most places don’t let you fraternize with the opposite sex in rehab. If you are having trouble with the rules against fraternization, it may be time to take a good look at yourself, your relationship and sexual history, and your goals for treatment.
If you or your loved one is in need of treatment for alcohol or drug addiction please give us a call at 800-951-6135.