A first DUI arrest is a nightmare scenario. For many, they were just out for a night of fun with friends and have no prior record of criminal activity. Unfortunately, their blood alcohol levels were enough for a criminal charge. If you’ve found yourself in a similar situation, then you’re probably panicking.
Your finances and freedoms are on the line. High fines, losing your license, increased insurance premiums, and jail time can severely impact your life. Luckily, there are things you can do to help get your life back on track. Here’s how to get back to normal after a DUI.
Learn from Your Mistakes
While it might be tempting, keep in mind that alcohol isn’t going to fix your problem. It isn’t uncommon for people to reach for the bottle during this stressful and depressing time, but drinking is going to cloud your judgment moving forward.
It’s vital that you commit to staying clean after your DUI. Sobriety shows the court that you are serious about reform and that you understand the severity of your actions. It’s also an excellent way to show remorse if your family is less than thrilled about the situation.
Representation is Everything
Whether you were simply over the legal limit or are dealing with a felony DUI, hiring proper representation is the only way to help lessen the consequences. Choosing to represent yourself will end in disaster unless you’re a lawyer well-versed in DUI cases.
Hiring a lawyer can help you avoid jail time, reduce your fines, and keep your license in some cases. Even when facing severe consequences, legal aid can help reduce your charges. The less time it takes to pay for your crime, the sooner you can get your life back to normal.
You’ll need some help to get your life back on track. That starts with the support of friends and family. Don’t be afraid to ask for rides when you need them or any other form of help. While your family might be angry, being honest with them about the situation and showing them that you’re working to be a better person will go a long way in earning their forgiveness.
You should consider a support group and a counselor or therapist. The court will probably decide that support group attendance is mandatory. If it does, go to every single meeting. If this isn’t a requirement, go to one anyway. It’s an excellent way to show the court you’re taking charge of your life.
Finally, it’s never a bad idea to seek help from a counselor or therapist. This is especially true if drinking or substances have become a problem in your life. One-on-one sessions, in addition to your group therapy, are the best way to kick your habit and turn your life around.
It takes time, but life will return to normal again as long as you’re actively working to better yourself. In the meantime, make sure to avoid triggers that cause you to drink. That could be anything from partying with friends to toxic family members or certain social situations. Your therapist can help identify these triggers and teach you how to avoid them.