It can be difficult to admit you need help. People want to be in control of their own lives and handle their own problems. This can be a major obstacle when dealing with addiction. The longer addiction maintains its hold, the more damage it does to both the individual and his or her family. That’s why it’s important that an addiction treatment plan involves the recovering addict’s loved ones to help everyone move forward.
Addiction can inflict damages on the family in a number of ways; anger, anxiety, fear, financial issues, helplessness, physical harm and stress are the most common. The cumulative stress of dealing with the addiction of a loved one can cause changes in the brain chemistry of family members, as well. It’s important to understand that your loved one did not become addicted on purpose. Addiction is a serious medical condition, but it is possible to heal those it has harmed.
While in treatment, your loved one is working on the various issues that contributed to his or her addiction. Many recovery plans involve education, therapy and emotional breakthroughs in a supportive setting. However, if the family isn’t involved, their trauma remains untreated. Unhealthy coping mechanisms and behaviors family members have developed to deal with the situation oftentimes go unaddressed. Once their loved one returns home, these unresolved issues and the potential for lingering resentment or doubt can trigger relapse and cause further damage to the entire family.
When the family is involved in recovery, each person’s perspective has the opportunity to be shared. Healing becomes possible for everyone involved. Problematic family dynamics that existed before addiction or ones that developed after the fact can be addressed.
As a family, you might have felt forced to cut the person struggling with addiction out of decision-making processes, discussions or activities. Family therapy can help you reintegrate your loved one into everyday family life, and lines of communication that were shut down can be reopened in a safe, neutral setting. As your loved one recovers from addiction, family therapy can help you also heal so that your entire family can have a fresh start once treatment is completed.
At Cycles of Change, we emphasize family involvement in drug and alcohol treatment. Our compassionate professionals have experience dealing with complicated family dynamics and how those might influence or be influenced by addiction. We are committed to helping you and your loved one recover. If your family needs help dealing with a loved one’s addiction, don’t wait another day. Contact our team and begin the process of healing now.