Your Encouragement and Support is Important!
Having a member of your family in rehab like Hope Trust for drugs or alcohol means that you're inevitably facing, and perhaps even struggling with a lot of concerns, questions and maybe some misconceptions about how professional treatment works. The following may answer some of those questions.
He is in Good Hands
First, relax and take a deep breath. Your family member is in a safe and alcohol/drug free environment. His disease has just been arrested. Apparently, he had a substance abuse problem and he needs to get professional help. If that is the case, he is exactly where he needs to be to get the help that he needs.
He is in the hands of a staff of professionals, including medical and nursing personnel, who are experienced and have received special training and education to help people who have alcohol or drug problems. He is also surrounded by peers who are, or have been, in the same situation that your family member is in and will provide an additional support system for him while he begins recovery.
At Hope Trust, he will receive group therapy, individual counselling, medical care and a balanced diet. In other words, your loved one is in the hands of exactly who he needs to be in order get the help he needs to address his substance abuse issues.
Don't Take it Personally
Your family member is in an addiction recovery facility. Due to confidentiality concerns, the staff of the facility may be prohibited from giving out some information about his situation. Your loved one will have to tell you himself. Nevertheless, his physical status, medical concerns and other therapy issues are made aware to immediate family and are called for discussing the same with his doctors and counsellors. His primary counsellor will be sending you monthly Progress Reports via email and you are free to contact him/ her for any clarifications.
No, you cannot talk with him right now, but don't take it personally. In the early days of his rehab program, his contact with the outside world will be highly restricted. His counsellor facilitates his communication with immediate family only in person during family sessions/interventions or through phone conversations after completing 30 - 40days’ of his stay in recovery. This is necessary so that he can concentrate on getting and staying sober with as few distractions or outside influences as possible. In the early hours and days of his treatment, his entire focus needs to be on doing what he needs to do to maintain abstinence.
At Hope Trust, he is in the hands of a staff of experienced professionals, including medical and nursing personnel.
Family Involvement in Rehab
A point will come in your loved one's rehab when you will be asked to become involved. The recovery program at Hope Trust includes the family of the patient in his recovery process because research has shown that it reduces the risk of relapse. Usually during the first week of his rehab, you will be invited to the treatment facility for a "Family Psycho Educational Workshop," or family sessions/interventions. During this time, you will be able to express your concerns, questions, experiences and feelings related to your addicted family member. The Hope Trust counsellor will also educate you about addiction and what the recovery program involves.
Benefits of Family Involvement
Participation in the family sessions/interventions is beneficial in several ways:
- It gives the rehab counsellors the opportunity to gain inputs from the family, observe how the family interacts and learn more about family dynamics
- It can encourage your loved one to continue with his treatment program knowing the family supports him or her (‘support’ may not mean what the family has been believing it be so far)
- It offers your family member an opportunity to learn how the entire family has been affected by his addiction
- The Hope Family Support Program will help the family members initiate their own recovery
Learning about Addiction
The main purpose of involving you in the workshop is to provide you with information about the dynamics of alcoholism and addiction, and how family members can be affected by the substance abuse of others. The goal is lessening the family's burden, increasing helpful behaviours, and decreasing any unhelpful behaviours.
- At Hope Trust, the following topics are commonly addressed during the family workshop/sessions:
- An overview of substance abuse and dependence, including prevalence, symptoms, causes, and basic concepts
- Effects of substance use disorders on the individual, family system, and individual family members, including children
- Overview of recovery issues for the affected person (physical, psychological or emotional, social, family, spiritual and other) and how to measure outcomes
- How the family can help, including enabling behaviours for the family to avoid and behaviours that support the addicted family member's recovery
- How a family member can heal from the adverse effects of involvement in a close relationship with an alcoholic or addict
- Self-help programs for family members (such as Al-anon and Alateen) and how they can help
- Common warning signs of relapse, the importance of relapse prevention planning, how the family can be involved, and how to deal with an actual relapse.
Seek Help for Yourself
You can seek professional marriage counselling, family counselling or individual therapy for yourself. Your counsellor at Hope Trust can help with contact information. For further support, you can participate in mutual support groups, such as Al-Anon, and your children can participate in Alateen. Many family members of alcoholics and addicts have found that joining an Al-Anon Family Group can be a positive, life-changing experience.
You can also begin to educate yourself about alcoholism and addiction and how it can affect every member of the family. The more you know about the dynamics of a family affected by addiction, the more you will be able to offer your addicted family member understanding and encouragement.
At the time of admission at Hope Trust, the family is also provided a unique kit containing useful literature about the family’s healing and rebuilding relationships.