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Holidays a difficult time for people recovering from addiction; tips to stay sober

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The holidays are a time to celebrate and enjoy the ones you love.

For some, this is a stressful time of the year, especially if you're battling drug or alcohol addiction.

Grace Shober and Maggie Hunt both use their sobriety to help those battling addiction.

They both say the holidays can be difficult. There's temptation, but it can also be hard to be around the ones you love.

Both of them work at Retreat, a rehabilitation center in Ephrata.

"I was homeless, I lost everything that I had, literally had the clothes on my back, and finally I went to my last treatment center in September 2014," said Shober, talking about her path to recovery.

They're both celebrating years of sobriety.

"You’re around people that you’ve hurt, because typically you hurt your family the most, so you’re around those people you have high expectations that are out on you," Shober said.

There's also temptation, including the presence of alcohol at holiday parties.

Hunt lost her father to a fentanyl overdose on December 27, 2017.

"The silence is what's killing people, not reaching out," Hunt said. "It’s okay to reach out around the holidays if you’re struggling. It's key to know where there are AA [Alcoholics Anonymous] and NA [Narcotics Anonymous] meetings in your area if you do need help."

Hunt says it's key to have a support system, including others in recovery who understand what you're going through.

"They can pull it out of you," Hunt said. "That’s why it’s important to be around those people, because they’re going to celebrate you. The best way for people who are sober to stay sober is by helping other people."

Shober says another tip is to write down five things your grateful for, that can serve as reasons to stay sober.

"It’s really important to know that missing one holiday is okay, so you can be there for the rest," Shober said.

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