Addiction has often been referred to as a “family disease” because of how deeply it affects everyone in the life of the addicted person. All it takes is one family member or friend having an addiction to drugs for the functionality of that family to fall apart. Many family members struggle to address their loved one’s addiction and how it is impacting them. For family and friends in the life of someone addicted to drugs and/or alcohol, speaking to them about the addiction is one of the most difficult parts of helping them realize that they need treatment. However, not addressing their addiction and the impact it has on everyone around them can be a recipe for disaster.
Family Involved in Addiction Treatment
Family involvement during treatment cannot be overstated and a supportive family increases the likelihood of successful treatment. Family members are encouraged to get involved in their loved ones’ drug treatment and there are many different ways you can get involved and help them through a tough time as well as help yourself in the process. The first thing you should do is to get informed so that you know what you are talking about.
Benefits of Supportive Family in Addiction Recovery
Having supportive family members at an addict’s side will help them recover and stay sober in the long run. At the same time, it’s important to give space and room for the recovering individual to grow in their sobriety journey. It is very beneficial for everyone involved when you are educated on the disease of addiction and what your loved one’s treatment is like. It might seem overwhelming to gather all of this information of your own, but it is pretty simple to get informed on this disease and what the treatment will be like you can do a few different things including:
- Go online and read about the nature of addiction and the treatment process from reputable sources
- Attend Al-Anon meetings or other support groups specifically designed to help the families of addicts. These are meant to inform, help you, and get you connected with others in the same position as you.
- Call and speak with the treatment center your loved one is attending to learn about their programs of action and how they go about treating their patients.
How to Get Involved In a Loved One’s Drug Treatment
Whether your loved one is involved in an inpatient treatment program or an outpatient program, there are ways that you can get involved. In an inpatient, or residential, treatment program the patient will reside at the facility where they will undergo an intensive 28-30 day detox program where they are fully submerged in the recovery process and don’t have the option to leave the property. Family involvement during this time is still important and most inpatient programs encourage regular interaction by having visits with family and friends. Inpatient treatment is not meant to isolate the person from their friends and family, but it is meant to focus on your loved ones’ physical recovery as well as the mental recovery from active addiction. Addiction therapy is supported by the involvement of the family in the process.
Help But Don’t Enable Your Loved One
When someone is involved in an outpatient treatment program, it means that the person is not separated from their family while they attend therapy and treatment at a facility close to where they live. You can be supportive and involved in their recovery, but it is important to not belittle or hover them in the process. While your intentions may good, it can overwhelm your loved one. This also allows you to address your role in their addiction. Well-meaning families can often become stuck in a cycle of co-dependency and enabling without even realizing this. Attending therapy with your loved one can help you see your role and gives you a chance to practice being a positive entity in their life of recovery.
Get the Help You Need
Family is a person’s most valuable support group. There is hope for both the one suffering from addiction and the family around them. It is never too late to fix what is broken. We at Evoke Wellness at Cohasset are ready to assist you by helping your loved one through their recovery journey.