When we discuss the devastating impacts of addiction, the primary focus is on the addict. This makes perfect sense because their behaviors have long-reaching consequences on loved ones and the community. However, focusing on the addict is only half the story. For the addict to have the best chance at long-term recovery, the addict’s family must be involved in the recovery process. Family support addiction recovery improves the addict’s chance of staying in treatment and achieving long-term recovery. This article will discuss the importance of family addiction support as well as the benefits of addiction help for families.
Why is Addiction a Family Disease?
When discussing family support addiction recovery, it is often said that addiction is a family disease. For some families, this may be difficult to understand. In reality, the addiction of the user consumes the entire family. When a family member struggles with substance abuse, each family member takes on a role. There may be a family member or members may that enable the addict while another family member becomes obsessed with “fixing” their loved one. Additionally, there will be others that feel great resentment because the addict receives all the care and attention.
To truly help the addict become clean and sober, the family unit as a whole needs to heal. Professional help for families of addicts allows the family unit to come together, understand what part they played in a loved one’s addiction, and learn healthy coping and communication skills. Family support addiction recovery programs provide a nurturing environment for the addict to recover and become more confident in working on a program of recovery.
Does Addiction Run in Families?
Perhaps the most asked question regarding addiction is if addiction is genetic. The reality of addiction is that genetics plays a role in the formation of addiction but is not the sole cause of addiction itself. Addicts that have a family history of substance abuse may have genetic traits which make them more vulnerable to addiction. It is important to note that while people may inherit certain genetic traits that make them more likely to develop an addiction, they may never develop an addiction. The presence of other factors, such as family dysfunction, pre-existing mental illness, trauma, neglect, and lack of healthy coping skills, need to be taken into account.
What are the Benefits of Family Support Addiction Recovery?
As stated earlier, family addiction support programs are crucial for healing the entire family unit. The following are the major benefits of family support in addiction recovery:
Perhaps the biggest benefit of family programs is support. Throughout the rehab process, the family learns they are not alone in dealing with a loved one’s substance abuse. Many family support addiction recovery programs include family support groups such as AA and NA and family-oriented support groups like Al-Anon and Alateen. These groups give families support and encouragement from others who are in similar situations. Ultimately, the family and the addict can be empowered to make the changes needed to create healthier relationships.
Stops Enabling Behaviors
Another benefit of family support addiction programs is that family members identify and stop enabling behaviors that hinder an addict’s path to recovery. Enabling behaviors occur when family members try to help an addict get on their feet, but these actions end up doing more harm than good. These behaviors can include paying rent and bills of the addict, giving rides to the addict, and making excuses for an addict’s behavior. These programs help families realize their role in their loved one’s addiction, and they will learn to replace those ineffective behaviors with more healthy behaviors.
Ultimately, family therapy and related programs help both the addict and the family understand that the recovery process takes a lifetime. While completing a treatment program is an important milestone, ongoing therapy, and care are crucial in continuing to strengthen recovery. These aftercare options include sober living and intensive outpatient among others.
Family Involvement is the Key to Recovery
If a loved one is struggling with substance abuse, it takes the help of the family to help the healing process. The Last House recognizes this fact, and our sober living programs emphasize strong family support and evidence-based clinical programs administered by experienced professionals. When your loved one enters our premier sober living facilities in Los Angeles County, you will see them transformed into the loving and healthy individuals they are meant to be.
Call the Last House today and start a new and exciting chapter in life.