Family in Addiction Recovery Part 4- Life After Treatment

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FAMILY SERIES -

Hi it's Dermot again. If you read my last blog from 25th April, you will know that this is a follow up to that blog and part of a "Recovery from Addiction Series", If not read on:
 

I decided as part of my bloging series, "Recovery in Addiction Series", to include a few blogs on family. It is an undisputed fact that family are directly effected by addiction and in most cases it is the family that eventually help to motivate change in an addict or atleast do their utmost to do so. Families also suffer immense hardship through addiction and it does leave emotional scars in everyone. No one escapes the impact and effects of addiction.
 

Life After Treatment (From a families perspective)

When a person completes treatment and is in early recovery, life for all the family can initially still be very dysfunctional. Any change is hard, especially when there are engrained habits and behaviours on all sides that have to be recognised and changed.

What to expect

—In addiction the “abnormal became normal” This needs to be identified and addressed in early recovery & boundaries need to be set or re set. “Bury the hatchet”

Examples: enabling, making excuses for, molly cuddling, turning a blind eye, be over bearing.

—Co-dependency – is initially a means of dealing with the “abnormality” of addiction, which can become an obsession in itself. 

Examples: Letting another person’s mood dictate your mood, Elephant in the living room, Thinking & feeling that if the addicted person is okay then so are we.

What changes do we need to make

—What to do now: Avoid doing EVERYTHING that didn’t work during active addiction.

—Do more of what works for everyone in the family.

—Give time, time, & let trust be earned by all.

—Talk, talk & talk some more.

—Connection & re connection are key to recovery.

—Addiction is a “Family Disease”, thus Recovery must be a “Family Response”.

—All or nothing.

Resilience

—Can we bounce back after a set back or even a relapse.

—Recovery language: I can(do this), I am (worth it), I have (support).

—Positive response is far more productive than a negative reaction.

—Its okay to express feelings: Both good & bad feelings as they are the language of recovery.

—Admitting to addiction is resignation – desire to use/ drink is still there.

—Acceptance to addiction is Letting Go – desire to use/ drink is infrequent.

—The best way to go from A to B is through feelings

Coping irrespective of out come.

—Do not allow things to go back to the way they where.

—Saying “I let him/ her do it for a peaceful life” is resignation & an acceptance of abnormality again.

—You will lower your own self esteem & feel worthless, desperate & depressed.

—Recovery is an opportunity for everyone to grow, its best to grow together even if that means having to pick each other up every now and again. – Team work

—If the addicted person & or family try go it alone and work against each other, recovery will fail.

Self Care

—You cannot fix that which is outside of you without first fixing that which is in you”

—Everyone HAS to put their own needs first, its not selfish, but common sense.

Sum up

—As addiction is un predictable, so is early recovery.

—Working together towards a healthy relationship is key to ongoing recovery.

—Self care is how we can achieve this no matter what the outcome is.

My next article will be is on Gratitude

The articles in "Recovery from Addiction" Series, are the opinion of the author and if you would like to contribute to it, please leave a comment in the comment box below. If you want to subscribe, for free, to any further blogs of mine please leave your email in the blue box below.
 

 

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