Family Therapy Can Help · Behavioral Health Treatment. The challenge of addiction is that the addict is not the only one affected by this disease. Family and friends may struggle with the addict's behavior, financial problems, legal problems, and the daily struggle to provide for a loved one. Here are seven tips that family and friends can consult to support an addicted family member or friend.
To talk to others who have similar problems, think about SMART Recovery Friends %26 Family, which offers secular, science-based support group meetings (both online and in person) to help people affected by drugs, alcohol, or other addictions. Talking to a health professional can sometimes convince you to seek help for addictions, rather than listening to this suggestion from a family member or friend. However, establishing trust is an important first step in helping a person with addiction think about change. Many family members and friends buy food, provide financial assistance to pay court fines or lawyers, or pay rent to help someone, but it usually only prolongs the illness, since addicts can avoid the consequences.
An intervention can motivate someone to seek help for alcohol or drug misuse, compulsive eating, or other addictive behaviors. An evaluation by an addiction professional helps determine the extent of the problem and identifies appropriate treatment options. Step-by-step guides to finding treatment for drug use disorders (PDF): Guides for adults, teens, or people helping someone who is addicted to drugs. It's important to make sure you're well enough to manage the potential stress of helping someone deal with an addiction.
When you learn to help an alcoholic family member or loved one with any other type of addiction, being compassionate is also a great way to help build trust, which is crucial for a successful and lasting recovery. These programs often incorporate elements of CBT and motivational interviewing, which involve the use of structured conversations to help people think about how their lives will improve by ending their addiction. That said, one way to help someone who refuses help for substance abuse is to learn about their addiction and then try to find resources that can change their mind. Some people find that when they seek help for themselves, the person struggling with addiction becomes angry.
An addiction professional will consider your loved one's particular circumstances, suggest the best approach, and guide you on the type of treatment and follow-up plan that are likely to work best. Treating yourself to self-care isn't selfish, especially when helping someone deal with an addiction. Embarrassing or criticizing a family member who is struggling with an addiction to alcohol or opioids is often counterproductive to their recovery. Addiction therapy using CBT focuses on helping people understand how their beliefs and feelings influence their behaviors.