In our culture, men are often programmed to call other men out from a place of hostility and angst. However, it’s possible to call someone out from a place of honesty, respect, and genuine care. It’s very important to call out your male friends in early recovery. Here are a few ways to communicate healthfully, so that everyone benefits.
Choose an appropriate time for both of you.
It’s best to choose a time when you’re calm and peaceful, as opposed to angry or annoyed. If you’re feeling upset, you’ll be more likely to react from a place of ego and anger, rather than understanding and empathy.
Identify the clear reasons why you’re confronting this person.
Try to slow down, meditate, and reflect upon your reasons for calling out your brother in recovery. Be as specific as possible and communicate these reasons to your friend.
Use “I” statements, as opposed to “you” statements.
Try to begin your sentences with “I feel…” or “I’ve noticed…” This way, you’re less likely to take on an accusatory tone, which could throw your friend off and cause him to put up a wall. You want your friend to be hear you and ultimately, get help and move towards positive change. Choose your words and tone carefully.
Write down your main ideas before the conversation.
This is another exercise that will serve to clarify the purpose of the call out and serve to ground you so that you’re not coming from a place of emotional reactivity. Write down what you’ve observed from your friend, why you’re calling him out, and what you’d ultimately like to see happen.
Make it clear that you care about him. People are more likely to hear you and integrate your words when you say positive things along with difficult or more negative things. Studies have actually shown that when you don’t positively reinforce someone while offering criticism, the person actually shuts down and isn’t able to take in the information. We are programmed to hear positivity. Think about some of the great things that you love about your buddy and incorporate them into the conversation.
Tree House Recovery of Orange County, California is a premier men’s addiction treatment facility that uses eight different modalities to help our men become the best versions of themselves they can be. We teach our men that every day of their journey is something to celebrate, and that recovery isn’t a sprint– it’s a marathon. To get started with Tree House Recovery, call us today at (855) 202-2138.