Recovery Housing – One Final Tool for Recovery

Kraig Reichley

Fury At Fifteen

“At 15, I had my first experience with alcohol,” Kraig Reichley said. “I drank till I passed out – finding my addiction to that euphoric feeling right away. I was back at it again by the very next day.”

Having grown up in a home with a functional alcoholic parent allowed Kraig to view alcohol as a normal part of living. His addiction to alcohol continued through his 20’s and 30’s; he was able to maintain his job as a mailman, drinking only on weekends.

Road Blocks At Forty

By the time he hit his 40’s, alcohol became part of his everyday life. His father died, he was in a bad relationship, his mental health was in decline, and alcohol filled those voids. He eventually lost his job, his home, and his friendships. With nothing holding him in Cleveland, he moved to Wooster to care for his mother who was facing health issues. 

“I came here knowing that I had to do something with my life beyond helping my mother. I immediately went to the agency then known as STEPS and moved into Pathway, the residential treatment program for men,” Kraig related. 

Pathway To Sobriety

For the first time, he realized that he was not alone in his addiction. OneEighty (formerly known as STEPS) presented him with a ‘new way of looking at life’. It included inspiring him to ‘not fall on his failures’ but to find ways to better himself.

“At the time, I was able to stay in the program for 19 months. Having that stability enabled me to go back to school and earn an undergraduate degree at Akron University in social work,” Kraig recalled. “But, over time I submarined myself by skipping AA meetings and not working with my sponsor.”

Living a relapsed life was not what he wanted, so he returned to Pathway. However, in retrospect, he realized he was not very committed to working the program. He was employed as a food service worker at the jail, but employment wasn’t enough to keep him in recovery. 

Sober Living House Final Step

“I returned to Pathway a third time with a much different attitude. I was committed to leaving my old life behind. I went through the transition or step-down part of the program which required me to find a job, find housing, and be faithful in attending regular AA meetings and using my sponsor,” he said. 

Only this time, OneEighty had a spot for him in one of its ‘Recovery Houses’ in Millersburg, OH. There he found work as a security guard at the hospital, and his sober life was taking shape. Within a short period of time, an opening in one of OneEighty’s Recovery Houses in Wooster became available. He jumped at the chance to come back and live near his family.

So why did this final step in his recovery program make such a difference? He has no trouble putting that into words!

“To be able to live in a totally drug-free environment surrounded by peer housemates striving to stay sober adds such a strong layer of help to someone in recovery,” he explained. “Then, I have a very affordable rent, so I don’t have the stress of housing costs taking the majority of my income. And, we have peer support meetings every two weeks and house meetings monthly. I live with 5 other men who share my challenges. We discuss our successes and any struggles we are facing. Add in the resources we still have access to at OneEighty, and we have a super supportive situation.”

Kraig points to the Recovery Houses are yet another testament to OneEighty’s commitment and focus on helping people and its community at large.

“OneEighty really cares about its clients, and they do their job well.”

Kraig says he is functioning as he should now in a sober environment. He also began working at the Wayne County Public Library which he credited as being a wonderful environment, very conducive to his continued sobriety. 

But he kept remembering what one of his counselors said in a past session. She mentioned that he was someone who would be a great peer support person for OneEighty. Now two years sober and feeling strong in his recovery, he decided it was time to put his life experiences and his degree to work by following his passion – making a difference in people’s lives.

We’re here to support you.

We help people change direction with programs for addiction, domestic violence, rape crisis, mental health, housing, and prevention and education. At OneEighty, we actively support an evidence-based approach to sustainable recovery from trauma and addiction – restoring dignity and purpose, reimagining potential, and rebuilding lives. OneEighty offers counseling programs, intensive addiction treatment programs, group addiction treatment, residential services, victim services, recovery housing, and peer recovery.

Sharing The Tools

For the past 3 months, Kraig has been a Residential Peer Supporter. 

“I share with our recovery residents that staying on the program will help them avoid the depression, isolation, and hardships that come with addiction. I assure them that life is better sober. I try to help them build their confidence by encouraging them to discard the level of self-blame we all have and to learn how to deal with life in new, productive ways,” he said. 

His final words — “Sober life is fantastic! I feel reborn, and I hope I can help others turn their lives around.”

OneEighty Resources

For those encountering a substance use crisis, please call OneEighty’s Substance Use Crisis hotline, available 24 hours per day, 365 days per year, at 330.466.0678. For other resources, click the links below: 

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