At WhiteSands Treatment Center, we have a vision of providing care not just for addicts, but family therapy as well. Indeed, addiction is often called a family disease precisely because of the profoundly negative impact that it has on loved ones. If you are a partner, parent, child or sibling of an addict, you may feel embarrassed about your emotions and worry that you are being selfish given the scale of the problems faced by your loved one. However, experts emphasize that the families of addicts need support and treatment too, and we want you to recognize that your feelings, needs and wants are just as important as the addict’s. Lasting change must come not only from the addict but also from the most important figures in their life.
Dealing with your emotions as a family member of a person dealing with addiction
WhiteSands provides an extensive family therapy program that works to heal the family unit on multiple different fronts. Firstly, we work to address the most common types of emotional problems faced by the families of addicts, and to mend the broken or damaged bonds between addicts and family members. For example, it is common to feel anxious, hurt, frightened and resentful in the wake of discovering a loved one’s addiction. You may struggle to trust the addict, and this can lead to profound conflict in the family. We will help you to build trust, and help the addict to understand why your trust problems exist.
In addition, our addiction counselors are well-versed in identifying and changing the types of problematic behaviors that can enable addicts. In spite of having the best of intentions, family members can exacerbate or encourage a substance abuse problem by keeping it a secret or by trying to restrict drug or alcohol consumption (rather than taking a firmer stance). You may also have false guilt, wondering if you are responsible for the addict’s behavioral patterns. We will address this form of co-dependency, and we will teach family members new, more productive behavioral patterns that will help to reduce the risk of the addict relapsing in the future. We are experienced in equipping addicts and family members with the communication skills required to have more honest, healthy conversations with each other.
Psychotherapy can be especially useful when it comes to facilitating improved communication in relationships. Our addiction counselors teach addicts and their families how to be open, honest and respectful when discussing contentious issues, and moderate discussions that explore the roots of alcoholism and drug abuse. For example, one half of a couple may feel that alcohol offers an escape from the inherent troubles in the romantic relationship, and we can help to tackle these problems directly (discouraging unhealthy coping mechanisms).
Dealing with addiction can lead both addicts and their loved ones to say and do things that leave emotional scars. Addicts may feel profoundly guilty for lying to those who depend on them, and family members may wonder how they can ever come to trust the addict again. Our family therapy programs provide you with catharsis by allowing you to express all of your most intense emotions in a safe, empathetic environment. In addition, our therapists work to address these alcohol and drug abuse effects in practical ways, helping you to create productive strategies that promote hope for the future.
Lack of understanding
Often, the families of drug and alcohol rehab patients feel confused about what is happening to their loved one’s mind and body. Should the addict be held accountable, and if so then to what extent? Were all of the addict’s behaviors voluntary, or were all of them involuntary? It is important to strike a balance between heaping blame onto an addict and refusing to view them as being in any way culpable. We offer educational programs that explain the complex nature of addictions and how they affect the mind and body. Whether you are hooked on opiates or dependent on an illegal drug like crystal meth, we can explain what it is doing to your brain and your health. This type of education helps to demystify addiction, teaches family members about what they can expect from the addict in the future, and aids them in offering concrete support.
Updates and education
We understand that you will want to know what is happening to your loved one in rehab, and we will keep you informed about their progress in inpatient detox. We are happy to ensure that you know everything about the treatment program and get a chance to ask any questions or air concerns.
We also place a strong emphasis on family education; we want to help you understand the complex nature of addiction, and the physical and psychological ways in which it has touched your family. When your loved one is ready to leave the treatment center, everyone involved in the situation will be able to move towards a healthy, happy family future beyond the chaos of addiction.
You deserve to be free from the devastating cycles of drug and alcohol addiction. Call (877) 855-3470 to talk to our team of alcohol and drug treatment specialists about why WhiteSands is the perfect place to recover.