Addiction affects so much more than just one person – entire families, entire neighborhoods and entire societies can be impacted in a multitude of ways. If your family has been affected by addiction, a lot of time and healing work needs to take place. Previous studies have shown us that the entire stability of the family can be shaken if addiction enters the picture. This is because sometimes, new roles must be established/transferred, and this changes the overall family dynamic. For example, a parent who is actively addicted to drugs may no longer be able to watch their children, thus placing a younger sibling, working parent or grandparent to take over that role. Family care programs are excellent because they help your entire family work together and grow as a team as a loved one works through recovery, especially since the impact can weighs so heavily.
Families often need structure and guidance for working through this time of healing, as family members may hold a lot of anger, tension, sadness, anxiety and more. Family care programs can be challenging because there is so much pain involved – but the therapist is meant to serve as a safe, third party person to guide everyone through the healing process. Previous research on the topic of family therapy has given us a lot insight into what works for families in recovery, and the most important one is this: readiness to change.
Individual family members must be ready to change just as much as the family as a whole; since addiction is considered a family disease, individuals have to find healing and strength from within in order to make the entire family stronger. Two years ago, researchers confirmed that readiness for change really has an impact on dysfunctional family functioning and continued substance use within the family. Even if family members aren’t quite sure how to work together yet, focusing on the benefit of healing for themselves could be a great motivator for change. As time has shown again and again, harmful family cycles can continue unless family members decide to take a stand against it and do something different. Family programs give people the opportunity to do just that: break the cycle.
Communication is critical, and a therapist can help guide the family into new ways of communicating wants and needs. Different topics can be addressed, depending on specific family issues. If your family is currently trying to move forward from addiction, don’t underestimate the power of additional help. Sometimes an “outsider” can give your family everything you need to move forward with recovery.
Cumberland Heights is a nonprofit alcohol and drug-addiction treatment center located on the banks of the Cumberland river in Nashville, Tennessee. On a sprawling 177-campus, we are made up of 2 twelve-step immersion campuses, 12 outpatient recovery centers and 4 sober living homes. We believe that each person has a unique story to tell – and that’s why we always put the patient first.
Call us today at 1-800-646-9998 to take the next step towards your happiness and health.