Types of Support Groups for Those Affected by Someone’s Addiction

Types of support groups for those affected by someone’s addiction

Loving someone who suffers from addiction is a heartbreaking and isolating proposition. Whether it is a partner, child, spouse, family member, or friend, you will likely feel frustrated and even alone. While others are bragging about a loved one’s accomplishments, you may sit silently struggling with what to do next. Rather than remaining isolated, you might explore the different types of support groups available to those impacted by someone else’s addiction. Hearing the experiences of others who are similarly situated and speaking openly about your own can lessen the feelings of isolation. Additionally, you may hear solutions that help you as you face up to a loved one’s addiction. At The Last House, we understand how confusing and isolating it can be to love someone struggling with addiction. We can help you navigate the types of support groups so that you can support yourself and your loved one during this time.  

Al-Anon and Alateen

Founded in 1951 by Lois W., the wife of the founder of Alcoholics Anonymous, Al-Anon provides support to the friends and families of alcoholics. While it was initially founded to support those who loved an alcoholic, all those who love someone facing addiction are welcome. Like Alcoholics Anonymous, Al-Anon relies on its own set of twelve steps and the option for members to work with a sponsor. Al-Anon is a peer support group; everyone in attendance has been impacted by a family member or loved one facing active alcoholism or active addiction. Meetings are held all over the world, in-person and online. Also available is Alateen, founded in 1957 to support teens affected by someone’s alcoholism or addiction. Neither group is focused on helping anyone with their alcohol or drug problem. Instead, it is solely focused on helping those affected by someone else’s drug and alcohol use. 

Adult Children of Alcoholics

Adult Children of Alcoholics/Dysfunctional Families (ACA) is aimed at men and women who grew up in dysfunctional homes.  ACA is a twelve-step program that also incorporated “The Laundry List,” a list of traits found in adult children. Much like Al-Anon and Alateen, ACA is a peer support group that relies on twelve steps, twelve traditions, and a sponsorship system. ACA is a peer support recovery group that originated within Al-Anon but focuses more on the effects of being raised in an alcoholic or dysfunctional household. ACA uses a Big Red Book rather than the Big Blue Book of Alcoholics Anonymous. 

Families Anonymous

Families Anonymous, while not associated with AA, Al-Anon, or ACA, is another twelve-step program available to those who love someone struggling with addiction. Founded in 1971 in California, Families Anonymous is for those relatives and friends who suffer from a substance abuse or related behavioral problem. Families Anonymous relies on twelve steps, twelve traditions, and meetings to assist those who love someone with a substance or behavioral problem. 

Supporting Someone in Addiction and Addiction Recovery

If you discover that someone you love has been using drugs or alcohol, you’ll find a world of options available to get them on the road to recover. The Last House is here to help keep them on that road. We are a network of sober living homes in the heart of West Los Angeles. We believe in providing our clients with the tools to have a meaningful life and participate in their sobriety.  Activities such as service commitments, sober parties, conventions, dances, and house outings are all a part of helping you learn how to have fun in sobriety.  If you’re helping your teen create a sober life, The Last House is here to help. Contact us today. 

How to Heal From Codependency and Repair Relationships

How to heal from codependency and repair relationships

Relationships are complex enough without the added complications of addiction and codependency. Loving a person who is fighting an active addiction is heartbreaking and exhausting. You may find yourself having an entire spectrum of emotions as the person you love  fights their addiction. You may feel like you are on the most extended road trip with multiple forks in the road but no map to guide you. Relationships with addiction are a breeding ground for unhealthy behaviors like codependency. Once the person you love finds their way to recovery, you’ll be left wondering how to heal from the codependency. At The Last House, we understand the strained relationships associated with addiction, and we can help your family heal the wounds created during active addiction.

How to Heal From Codependency as the Parent

As the parent of an addict, your child’s addiction may have taken over your life. Trying to save a loved one from active addiction can be all-consuming, especially your child. You want to protect your children from harm. Additionally, you’ve probably spent a lot of energy and effort trying to help them avoid the consequences of their addiction in an attempt to preserve their future. Finally, you likely have some level of resentment related to any manipulation that occurred during your child’s active addiction. One of the most important things to realize is that your child has responsibility for healing their addiction; it is not your role to save them. Any addict, no matter the age, must want to recover for any help received to be effective. Still, it’s hard to know where the boundaries are or how to create them.  Fortunately, you will find that you are not alone.  Peer support groups such as Al-Anon will provide you with the space and the tools to heal from codependency. Likewise, family and individual therapy will help you in your journey of healing. 

How to Heal From Codependency as the Recovering Addict

Nearly every person in recovery can look back at their active addiction and realize the number of times they manipulated, used, or lied to their loved ones. When you are active in your addiction, your focus is on using, and everything else becomes superfluous. Sadly, this only gets worse as you get deeper into your addiction, and you may not even remember all of the specifics of what you have done. Part of the recovery journey is to heal the relationships in your life. Sometimes this is done by creating healthier relationships, and sometimes this is done by ending relationships.  Working with a therapist and attending peer support recovery groups can help you to determine what steps are needed in your life. One of the basic tenets of recovery is to keep your side of the street clean, which simply means that you can only be responsible for your own behavior. Understanding this is critical for you to heal from codependency. If your parents have been rescuing you, saving you from consequences, and bearing the brunt of your addictive behavior, you have an opportunity in recovery to change those patterns. Being in recovery is about taking personal responsibility for your actions and your emotions. 

Sober Living at The Last House

The Last House Sober Living is a network of structured sober living homes in southern California. We believe in providing our clients with the tools to have a meaningful life filled with healthier relationships.  We’ll help you learn how to live and have fun in sobriety through service commitments, sober parties, conventions, dances, and house outings.  Our experienced staff is composed of active members of the Los Angeles Sober Living community. If you’re wondering where to start to create your sober life, The Last House is here to help. 

What Does It Mean to Relapse? Signs to Look Out for In Your Loved One

Drug and Alcohol addiction relapse rehabilitation treatment program

It is heartbreaking to watch someone you love struggle with active addiction. It’s also hard to know how to best support them through early sobriety and long-term recovery.  When your loved one is in early sobriety, you will hear a lot of talk about relapse and relapse prevention. But what does it mean to relapse? Relapsing involves picking back up drugs, alcohol, or both after having gotten sober. Relapse can happen at any time in sobriety, and that’s why relapse prevention is critical. The Last House is here to help with relapse prevention and support your loved one as they create their sober life.

What Is a Relapse?

While relapse occurs when someone starts using drugs or alcohol again, most will admit that the relapse began in their minds long before the use began. So what is a relapse? Is it the taking of any substance or just the drug of choice? The answer is it depends. There are those within the recovery community that adheres to a rigid set of standards for sobriety. The ones in this camp believe that the taking of any mind-altering substance equals relapse. Others believe that avoiding the drug of choice while taking other substances is acceptable. Finally, some strike a balance and feel that substances prescribed by a doctor do not constitute a relapse if the medication is taken exactly as prescribed. 

What defines a relapse is personal. What’s more important to know is that relapses, when they happen, are not a reason for shame and do not have to last long. While relapsing can be dangerous depending on the drug used, it can also be educational. Relapsing does not eliminate the work that has been done in sobriety. Instead, a relapse should be examined for the lessons that can be used going forward. 

Who Is Vulnerable to Relapse?

To some extent, everyone who is in recovery is vulnerable to relapse. Addiction is not a disease that vanishes. While it often gets easier over time, long-term sobriety still requires work. To reduce the risk of relapse in early sobriety, some basics help, including: 

  • Making choices that support physical and emotional well-being
  • Having a stable and safe place to live
  • Engaging in meaningful daily activities
  • Building supportive relationships and social networks

Those in sobriety must also learn to identify and recognize their triggers. Developing a plan to address triggers, stress, and other life events is critical to long-term sobriety. 

Relapse Warning Signs to Look Out for in My Loved One

It can be challenging to recognize a relapse, especially in early recovery. Many in early recovery are more emotional and moody simply because they are not using. It is not uncommon for those in early recovery to have some bouts of anger or to cry during the first several months.  Recovery is not linear, and each month will bring new challenges to face. However, the signs of relapse will often be similar to the signs that your loved one was using in the first place. Moodiness may be expected, but slurred words, pinpoint pupils, and marked personality changes are not. As with many things, you have to keep the lines of communication open and trust your gut. 

Live Sober With the Help of The Last House

The Last House Sober Living is a network of sober living homes in the heart of West Los Angeles. We believe in providing our clients with the tools to have a meaningful life, participate in their sobriety, and avoid relapse.  Activities such as service commitments, sober parties, conventions, dances, and house outings are all a part of helping you learn how to have fun in sobriety.  If you’re wondering where to start to create your sober life, The Last House is here to help.