A fact of addiction – addiction affects every person that encounters it. The family of an addict is no exception. Typically, the family becomes so immune to the addiction, that the chaotic lifestyle that comes with addiction becomes the norm. Addiction creates a dysfunction that alters the dynamics of a family system. Family members tend to establish unhealthy coping mechanisms to combat the awful reality of addiction. Out of control and unpredictable conduct from an addict causes stress on a family. It may seem that the addict has the sole problem, but the family can also become addicted to enabling the addict’s behavior.
Healing the family system usually only works if everyone gets help for the addiction. Although some family members may not be addicted in the same capacity as the addict, getting sober does not take away the issues that may have been compounded during the throes of the addiction. The goal of the family members may be to achieve harmony within the family unit, but they are actually trying to control the unmanageability to no avail.
One of the first things a family member can do is to educate themselves on what can be medically described as a disease of addiction. Having a better understanding of what happens to the brain of an addict, can shed light on a chronic, but treatable condition. Knowledge of how an addiction can infiltrate the entire family, can help to distinguish between how to help the addict and how to avoid being continuously drawn into unhealthy circumstances.
Getting help through therapy is a great way to gather up a defense against the addiction. Treatment facilities may offer programs that include family sessions which may be useful to help the family to work through the problems that have occurred due to the addiction. If the addict is receiving help through therapeutic means, it is imperative that other family members receive help in the same manner. In a healing family, everyone must be moving forward to the solution instead of being stuck in the mayhem of the past. Setting boundaries, building trust, and healing individually along with healing as a family can be resolved through therapy.
Connection to people that understand addiction because they have been through it with addict’s in their own life, is a great way to learn how to walk through what may seem like the impossible. There are wonderful support groups that point in the way of understanding how to change codependency and enabling while not feeling alone. Al-Anon, Nar-Anon, and CoDA (Co-Dependents Anonymous) are organizations that have been successful in the healing process of a broken family.
These approaches may seem time-consuming. Taking into consideration of how long the addiction has been apparent in family, can put into perspective how long the healing must take place. Healing the addicted family may take time, but it is worth it to gain a family unit that is no longer rooted in the muck of addiction.
You deserve to be ADORNED in your recovery. Life skills, coping tools, education, holistic healing, and a sober support system will help you gain long term sobriety. Serenity Oaks Wellness Center offers a comprehensive treatment program for recovering from drug and alcohol addiction. Call us today for information: 844-720-6847