Addiction is often referred to as a “family disease,” seeing as it deeply impacts all members of the immediate family – not just the individual who is suffering from a substance abuse disorder firsthand. Addiction is also called a family disease because it is genetic. Men and women who have addicts and alcoholics in their immediate family are far more likely to develop substance abuse issues themselves. The disease is hereditary.
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How Family Education Helps Recovering Addicts
For an individual to thoroughly and permanently heal from the devastation of addiction, his or her family members must undergo treatment themselves. This is especially true if the individual plans to return home after a multi-phased program of clinical care. If you have watched a loved one suffer at the hands of addiction, you might be wondering why you would spend your time undergoing a recovery process – it isn’t your problem, after all. You are not the one struggling with substance abuse. You are merely an innocent bystander, one who was unfairly forced to observe the devastation of addiction, but not one who lived it.
On the contrary, if you have watched a loved one suffer at the hands of addiction, you have lived through addiction yourself. Observing someone who has been struggling with substance abuse can be nearly as traumatizing as experiencing the associated symptoms firsthand. For this reason, undergoing your form of treatment is essential – of course, it will be significantly less intensive.
Family Education and Healing from Addiction
There are many reasons why family education is so beneficial to men and women who are in early recovery from substance abuse and addiction. Some of these reasons include:
- There is extensive research pointing to the fact that a high level of family involvement leads to lower rates of relapse overall. When the family is engaged in the recovery process, the client is more likely to experience long-term success in sobriety.
- Having a deeper understanding of the disease model of addiction can help facilitate feelings of understanding and compassion, and the client will ultimately feel more comfortable returning home once clinical treatment has concluded.
- Family therapy helps promote an improvement in communication skills, which contributes to a healthy exchange of personal experiences and feelings, promoting healing within interpersonal relationships and healthy communication among members of the family unit.
- When members of the family have a stronger grasp on the disease model of addiction, they will be more equipped to set and maintain personal boundaries that help them avoid enabling their loved ones. They will understand that constantly supporting their loved one financially and otherwise ultimately does more harm than good. Family education also focuses on which personal boundaries should be set.
Family Therapy and Drug Rehabilitation
At Recreate Life Counseling, we believe that family involvement is essential to every single stage of the recovery process. if the family members of the client are not willing to participate in his or her treatment program or treatment programs of their own, the likelihood for long-term success in sobriety diminishes significantly.
However, this is not to say that staying sober is not possible without family support. We understand that some of our clients are on their own – that their interpersonal relationships have been severely and potentially permanently damaged by active addiction. no matter what your current circumstances, we are available to help.
Our Family Program at Recreate Life Counseling
At Recreate Life Counseling, we offer a comprehensive family treatment program, geared towards providing the loved ones of our clients with the tools and resources they need to heal on their own and as a collective family unit. We believe that the family is crucial to the maintenance of long-term sobriety, seeing as they serve as a built-in support system and ultimately can mean the difference between relapse and recovery. It is important that the family members of our clients thoroughly understand the disease model of addiction, and know-how to address any issues that happen to arise in early recovery.