Recovery does not simply happen overnight for the addict and alcoholic. Rather, they must learn to live this new way of life- free of drugs and alcohol. Often times we neglect to realize that the family members and loved ones of the addict also need to adjust to this. Here we go over some tips for family members and loved ones of addicts/alcoholics for how to support them in recovery.
Set clear boundaries
It is crucial to set very clear boundaries with your loved one that leave no room for misinterpretation. For example, make it very clear that under no circumstance will drug or alcohol use be acceptable.
Try to set aside judgment and resentment
As hard as it may be, it is important to set aside judgment and any lingering resentment we may have towards our loved one while they enter recovery. A time will certainly come when we can deal with these feelings. But early on we should try our best to keep them at bay.
Don’t be afraid to speak up
Family members and loved ones can usually sense something is wrong before the addict even can. If you sense something is off or may be wrong, do not be afraid to approach your loved one in a non-confrontational way.
The dangers of enabling a drug addict and/or alcoholic does not end once they enter recovery. It is crucial to continue to resist enabling, and to stick to the boundaries you have set.
Many treatment centers and treatment programs offer education on addiction and recovery to family members and loved ones. These programs can offer invaluable information on relapse prevention and dealing with a loved one in recovery.
Take care of yourself as well!
Addiction without question also affects the loved ones; sometimes even more than the addict themselves. Numerous programs exist for the families and loved ones of addicts, such as Al-Anon and Nar-Anon. These programs will not only help you cope with having a loved one who is an addict, but they will also help you to support them even better.
This article is intended for those considering a new way of life, free of the pain of drug and alcohol addiction. For more information on recovery and anyone seeking help with addiction and substance abuse problems, please call True Recovery at (844) 744-8783 or visit us online.