When someone you love is addicted to drugs or alcohol, the toll it takes on family relationships can be devastating, especially as a parent. It’s likely that you’ve heard many opinions on what to do as a parent with a child suffering from the disease of addiction. Some say to take the tough love approach, while others say that intensive involvement in their addiction treatment and recovery is the best thing you can do.
7 Tips for Parents of Drug Addicts
With all the varying ideas and opinions, how are you to know what is the best way for you to help your addicted child? We put together 7 tips to help you decide which path will be the right option for you and your child.
Offer Positive Addiction Support
Often times simply offering to help – even if you have no idea how – is helpful in and of itself. Another way to be involved is to try asking your addicted child how you can be helpful to them. If you choose to be involved in their drug addiction treatment ask their addiction counselor or therapist how you can be most helpful.
Help Them Find a Substance Abuse Treatment Center
Searching for the right addiction treatment center can be a taxing experience that can add a lot more pressure to an already emotionally tense situation. Being there for your loved one and creating a strong support system for them, as well as for you, will be beneficial as you both navigate the path to effective drug addiction treatment.
Love Them Without Enabling Them in Their Drug Addiction
How can I show my child who is struggling with drug addiction that I love them with enabling them at the same time? This is one of the questions we get asked the most often. Often the difference between love and enabling is a slippery slope in regards to addiction support but there is a way to have your cake and eat it, too.
Be cool, calm, and collected when you approach the subject of their addiction and be honest. Let them know that you love them but you can no longer support or enable their drug or alcohol problem. Of course saying this and actually following through are two very different things so try your best to stick to it.
Understand: You Can’t “Fix” Them
Addiction is a family disease and recognizing your role in your loved one’s addiction is vital to their recovery. Active participation of the family unit is also proven to positively contribute to the recovery of someone struggling with drug addiction. However, it’s only one component and you alone cannot stop them from using or “fix” them.
Forget About Hitting Rock Bottom in Drug Abuse
For most recovering addicts, hitting rock bottom was instrumental to their recovery. Some even say it’s what saved them from themselves. But experiencing a low like that isn’t always a necessity and you really shouldn’t wait for someone to get to that point in order to seek treatment. Any time is a good time to get help for drug addiction.
Don’t Forget to Love Yourself
When you are all wrapped up in your loved one’s substance addiction problem, it’s common to forget about yourself. Their needs often come before your own and a lot of the time parents will see this as an act of love or sacrifice but at the end of the day, you will suffer the most from this followed closely by your loved one. Think of it this way; how can you help someone else if you can’t help yourself?
Family Program for Drug Addiction Treatment
We hope this has helped you but just in case you have more questions or want to reach out for help, our addiction specialists are here for you. Our family program is a strong component to the recovery of many of the residents at The Discovery House. Each Saturday, we welcome families into our facilities for our multifamily group sessions as well as individual family consults to provide information and resources on how to be supportive during your loved one’s recovery. We encourage family togetherness, and we work with individuals and families to help address underlying issues that have contributed to the addiction.