In recent years, when speaking about drug and alcohol abuse, the focus has turned inward towards the relationships that drug abusers have with their families, friends and romantic partners. In many instances, the families offer a wide range of support to help the recovering drug addict get the help that he or she needs. However, in many cases the family or other loved ones act as “enablers” or people who encourage drug use and abuse via their behavior. For example, statistics show that a child who grows up in a household where one or both of his/her parents are openly doing drugs or who are drug and alcohol addicts has a greater probability for becoming a drug or alcohol addict before they reach adulthood.
At Benchmark Recovery Center, we know what it is like to go through the drug and alcohol recovery process firsthand. This is why we focus on providing residents with the time they need to not only break their drug and alcohol addiction, but also acquire the necessary life skills and habit that they need for successful relapse prevention.
Family Intervention in Drug & Alcohol Relapse Prevention
According to the National Institute on Drug Abuse (NIDA), many drug and alcohol rehab centers offer families of addicts receiving treatment an opportunity to participate in outpatient addiction programs. However, many families choose not to. At Benchmark Recovery Center, we offer family counseling sessions as well as opportunities for residents to work one-on-one with an addiction counselor in order to help them assess personal issues revolving around their drug and/or alcohol addiction. The fact that families would refuse to seek group counseling with their loved one who is struggling with a drug or alcohol addiction is indicative of the fact that family members may feel personal guilt or animosity towards their loved one for having a drug and alcohol problem.
Knowing and loving someone who is addicted to drugs is an extremely difficult and emotionally trying process- one in which many family members are afraid to deal with openly because doing so would be admitting fault. At Benchmark Recovery Center, we encourage strong, healthy familial support as well as therapy to help develop positive relationships. Family members, often, cannot always blame themselves for their loved one’s drug addiction. What they can do is encourage and support their loved one by providing him or her with a healthy environment once they complete their residency at a drug and alcohol recovery center as well as by developing positive, encouraging communication.
The Family as an Enabler of Drug Relapse
The best thing that a family member can do for their loved one who is in drug recovery is be proactive. What do we mean by this? If you know that your spouse is coming home after spending time in a 30-day drug and alcohol recovery program, then you should make sure that they are coming home to an environment that is free of all temptations. Keep prescription medications out of sight, toss away any alcohol, and rid your home of any other illegal substances.
One of the unfortunately common situations that many recovering addicts face is the fact that when they get out of a drug and alcohol rehab center, they often have no place to go except right back into the same environment that they were living in, which may have contributed to their drug abuse in the first place. An example of this would be a husband who gets out of a drug and alcohol recovery center for an addiction to cocaine and goes home to his wife who is still using cocaine. In order for drug and alcohol recovery to be successful, Benchmark Recovery Center encourages families to become not only involved (in a positive way) in the addict’s recovery but also to become informed so that they can work together to prevent drug and alcohol relapses.