You’ll often hear people refer to addiction as a “family disease.” That’s because the effects of substance misuse disorders spread out to the lives of everyone who cares about them. Naturally, the addiction recovery process will affect your entire family as well.
Nobody would ever characterize the road to sobriety as a smooth one, and the earliest stages of addiction recovery can be the most challenging for everyone involved. During these difficult early months, family support is essential to aid a young adult who is living with a substance use disorder.
Why Is Family Support So Crucial?
Recovering addicts with a robust support system have an improved chance of not only completing a treatment program successfully, but also in maintaining their sobriety at home. But helping a loved one recover from addiction involves more than mere encouragement. While support is one part of the equation, you must also be prepared to get actively involved in the healing process in ways such as:
- Attending therapy or support group meetings with your son
- Educating yourself about what addiction and recovery entail
- Working with other family members to create a positive home environment
- Learning healthy communication skills
- Addressing any dysfunctional behaviors, like enabling, that may have contributed to your loved one’s addiction
How to Get Ready for Recovery as a Family
Setting the stage for health and healing requires a process as unique as your son’s fingerprint. No two individuals will handle the ups and downs the same. However, here are some things family members should keep in mind to equip themselves to handle a loved one’s journey to wellness.
Patience Is Essential
Recovery is an emotionally fraught time, both for the addict and those who are closest to them. You might feel guilt, loneliness, anxiety, stress and desperation, often all within the same day. Give yourself time and space to work through these emotions, and remember the mantra “one day at a time.”
Practicing your self-awareness and empathy are two additional ways you can get ahead of your family’s needs in the early phases of recovery. Your son and everyone else involved will be trying to process different issues at varying rates, and it can be easy to let those emotions bubble over. Try to put yourself in your son’s shoes and imagine how difficult early recovery is, especially during withdrawal.
Rediscover the Power of Hope
Substance misuse can take control over every aspect of a person’s life. As family members of a young man who is living with addiction, you can find some comfort in the fact that it is an illness that can be managed with the correct treatment. At Spearhead Lodge, we can facilitate a full recovery for young men living with addiction at our Austin, Texas, facility.
Our team of mental health and behavioral disorder specialists can provide guidance to young adults going through a difficult time in their life and help them realize their full potential. Reach out to us to learn more about our extended-care treatment center and how your loved one can begin to build a better future here.