When one member of the family suffers from addiction, the entire family suffers. However, everyone can heal together through the power of ohana. If each member of the family provides their love and support toward a loved one going through the struggles of treatment and recovery, they can achieve the path of sobriety much more successfully.
How Addiction Affects Family
Addiction can complicate what used to be a functioning family system. Many conflicting feelings can occur when watching your loved one suffer from addiction. This person may do a lot of things that hurt, like steal from you, get into trouble, or exchange hurtful words. They may give rehab a try after pushing them in the right direction. Unfortunately, this person could return to their old habits after relapsing. Just when you think that things will go back to normal, you cannot help but feel frustrated and disappointed in your loved one. It is important to remember that drug addiction can change a person in ways you would not imagine. These are all side effects of a brain disease that requires time, patience, and support.
Support and Encouragement
The greatest thing you can do for your loved ones is be there for them. In the early stages of recovery, your loved one will need your commitment to be someone they can lean on when hardships come. You can develop a plan on what to do when these challenges come, like if they relapse, deal with mood swings of withdrawal, struggling to find a job, or acting out.
There will always be speed bumps on the road to recovery. However, your loved ones may feel confident going forward knowing that they have you there to provide support and encouragement. Being someone they can turn to while they recover is priceless.
Let Your Loved One Take Responsibility
As a parent, friend, or relative, you may naturally want to save your loved one. Whenever they get arrested, you will be the first to bail them out of jail. If they owe money to a drug dealer, you are quick to give them the money. You may keep telling yourself these are one-time occurrences. However, you are not saving your loved ones but enabling their addiction.
Setting boundaries with your loved one may be challenging, but you will find it necessary. For example, if your loved one is arrested for drunk driving, you can tell them that you refuse to bail them out of jail again or pay for their fine. You may require them to find another place to live unless they check into residential alcohol treatment. If your loved one does not believe there will be consequences for their actions, they will not be motivated to change.
Provide a Safe Environment
If your loved one comes home from an inpatient facility, make sure it is a welcoming environment. Your loved one made a brave move into checking into rehab for their addiction. Now that they are home, the work for them is not done. They will need to continue what they have learned and apply it to the real world. This means to get rid of any alcohol bottles or cases you have in your house. No drugs should be present anywhere. Early recovery can be a sensitive time for your loved one. You want to show your support for their recovery.
Take Your Own Needs Into Account
Cleaning up after your loved one and being on full alert can leave you emotionally drained. You cannot help other people if you do not help yourself. You need to keep up with your own dreams, children, and other matters of great importance. Do not lose sight of who you are. Even though your loved one needs you right now, your physical and mental health needs you too.
If you and your family are still struggling with your loved one’s addiction, this is where family therapy comes in. Instead of your loved one being alone in their recovery speaking to a therapist one-on-one, the whole family can join in. A therapist can educate everyone to learn about the hardships of addiction and the best way to support your loved one. Family is an excellent way to stop the spread of substance abuse throughout the nuclear family and learn healthy ways to cope with emotions.
Family therapy can strengthen the relationships of everyone involved. It will be a comfort to your loved one to know that you are all on this journey together. After all, “ohana” means family. Treatment centers in Hawaii understand the importance of family in the role of recovery. The spirit and the power of “ohana” will bring everyone together to fight against substance abuse.
Family plays a vital role in addiction recovery. Every member of the family has dealt with the confusion and frustration of taking care of a loved one struggling with addiction. You may think you know exactly what to do to help your loved one when, in reality, you could be enabling their addiction. At Hawaii Island Recovery, we can provide you with the ohana power your family needs to get through this challenging time. Located in Kailua, Hawaii, our center for alcohol and drug treatment understands the importance of the role of the family in addiction recovery, and we are here to help you. With a combination of individual and group therapies, medication management, education, and more, you should feel at ease with our treatment center. Through dedication, hard work, patience, and love, your loved one can successfully recover. Call us today at (866) 390-5070 for more information about our services.