How to Support a Family Member During Addiction Treatment
Many family members feel an obligation to support a family member during addiction, doing whatever they can to help their loved one. While it may seem helpful to offer your home, food, or even money to a loved one in need, it is often these actions that enable the addict to continue using. This will only cause more hurt to the rest of the family and delay recovery.
It’s hard for family members to watch a loved one struggle and not offer help. But, sometimes a person addicted to drugs needs to feel and understand the consequences of their addiction to realize they need help to recover.
When your loved one is given a chance to realize that their addiction is hurting the family, they can begin to understand how destructive they’ve become, and that they do need help. It is not easy to tell someone you love that they cannot live with you, that you will not give them money, or that they are no longer welcome in your home. It may even feel scary or isolating to have to make these decisions, and that’s why Springboard Recovery offers support for the family members of addicts.
When you are surrounded by other people who feel the same way and can offer advice, your resolve will become much stronger. You’ll feel much more confident knowing that you are doing the right thing for your family members.
3 Ways to Support a Family Member During Addiction Treatment
1. Learn About Addiction
Educating yourself about addiction is one of the most important things you can do to support a family member during addiction recovery. It is important to remember that substance abuse does not happen to people who are ‘weak’ or lack willpower. Substance abuse is often a symptom of a much larger problem.
Often, your loved one will be suffering from issues, trauma, or other issues you may not even be aware of. This is one of the reasons why individuals who are addicted cannot get clean on their own, and why they require extensive treatment for their addiction.
Treatment at Springboard Recovery goes beyond treating the addiction and seeks to get to the root of the problem. When the mind is healthy, the body will often follow.
2. Create an Environment That Supports Recovery
Creating a safe, loving, and encouraging environment can help your loved one through recovery. Those who have the support of their loved ones are more likely to succeed in recovery. This means creating an environment that is relaxing and free from stress. Do not try to press your loved ones for details about their recovery or what ‘caused’ the addiction. Creating a schedule so your loved one knows what to expect, offering rides to and from appointments, and having family meals together are all great ways to create an environment that supports your loved one without enabling them.
3. Manage Expectations
Once a family member agrees to begin recovery, many families expect things to return to ‘normal.’ They hope their loved one will be happy, chipper, and carefree right away, but dealing with addiction is often very emotionally draining on an individual. They have to figure out how to live a brand new life, and it can be challenging for a person to navigate. Managing what you expect from your loved one will help to negate any feelings of disappointment, and can ensure you do not put too much pressure on your loved one.
Find Support for You and Your Family Member
Supporting a loved one through drug addiction treatment is a difficult task to undertake, and you shouldn’t face it alone. It is easy to forget about yourself and focus solely on your loved one during this time, but it is essential to remember that you will also need support and counseling as well. The experienced staff at Springboard Recovery are ready to help you as you support your loved one through this difficult time. Schedule a consultation to get started— we’re here to support you and your family.
- Medical News Today: https://www.medicalnewstoday.com/articles/323465
- Healthline: https://www.healthline.com/health/enabler
- National Institute on Drug Abuse: https://www.drugabuse.gov/publications/drugfacts/understanding-drug-use-addiction
- American Psychiatric Association: https://www.psychiatry.org/patients-families/addiction/what-is-addiction
- Healthline: https://www.healthline.com/health/addiction
- Verywell mind: https://www.verywellmind.com/coping-with-a-family-member-in-alcohol-or-drug-rehab-67295
- Verywell mind: https://www.verywellmind.com/substance-use-4014640
- National Institute on Drug Abuse: https://www.drugabuse.gov/publications/media-guide/science-drug-use-addiction-basics
- Inc.: https://www.inc.com/john-rampton/14-ways-to-become-stress-free-in-5-minutes.html
- Medium: https://medium.com/the-mission/how-to-actually-support-your-loved-ones-fc44ae46d056