Structured Sober Living: FAQ
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Most frequent questions and answers
Be sure to bring comfortable casual wear, gym clothes, running shoes, hiking shoes, bathing suit, toiletries and any special items you might miss from home! But nothing too big! Enough clothes for 7-10 days of living in between laundry.
Oak Forest was originally founded on the principle that men and women should be separated! Our men and woman live in separate houses and only come together while in a clinical setting for groups, at the gym in the mornings, Thursday nights for our community “bonfire” meeting and Game Night on Friday nights! We believe that men and woman in early sobriety should not live together but should start to learn how to interact appropriately in social settings – and while of course being monitored by staff.
ALL of the 5 Oak Forest houses have 24 hour PAID staff – Our staff of tech’s are made up of alumni clients who have completed our program, reached steps 10, 11, 12 with active spondee’s and have over a year of sobriety. Our staff is also paid hourly for all their work! We do not believe in a free living for work exchange.
RJ the Owner and Founder of Oak Forest has tirelessly worked towards and kept the mission of Oak Forest to be one of Community First with the understanding that long term sobriety is only achieved through unity. Over the years we have developed an alumni network of hundreds of sober men and women who attend our weekly bonfire meeting, game night and know that all of our houses keep an ‘open door policy’ to all of our past clients. We have also successfully helped many of our alumni obtain full time employment throughout the Oak Forest network or at locally based businesses owned by sober members of alcoholics anonymous.
We never commit to longer than 30 days at a time with any of our clients who enter our program. However, we strongly believe and push that any program that does not encourage a minimum of 90 days is hardly a success. At Oak Forest we have seen the strongest results from clients who have stayed 6 months – 3 months of intensive treatment and clinical work followed by 3 months of high-structure sober living where the focus is on life skills, entering the workforce and reaching steps 10, 11 & 12 and beginning to sponsor other men or women just starting their own journey.
Cognitive Behavior Therapy (CBT) gives clients the ability to recognize how events/triggers can create thoughts, feelings and behaviors that cause negative results in their life. Through CBT new thought patterns and neural pathways can be created, inspiring positive outcomes in daily life. Dialectical Behavioral Therapy (DBT) helps clients learn how to tolerate overwhelming emotions and distress through emotional regulation and tolerance skills like mindfulness; intrapersonal skills development to build self-esteem, self-confidence, and self-awareness helps clients understand who they are in relation to self. Interpersonal skills development like acquiring emotional intelligence and developing better communication skills to encourage healthy relationships with family and friends are also at the core of our curriculum.
Our clinical program works in sync with our structured sober livings. Our experience is that clients who are enrolled in our structured sober livings tend to have faster and more impactful breakthroughs. Cooperation between structured sober livings and treatment programs helps clients build discipline and confidence through a structured daily routine that connects them with like minded people. Structured sober living clients are required to attend 12 step meetings, participate in daily exercise/ movement and commit to acts of service within their community. They also attend organized social outings and events which helps them build a sense of community and support as they prepare to transition back into society.