The disease of addiction is multidimensional and complex. It wreaks havoc in the life of the addict. This disease can also viciously attack relationships of the family members and friends, bringing just as much or more pain. While the damage can be extensive, rebuilding healthy relationships plays a crucial role in a person’s recovery journey. A supportive community of people whom can effectively offer support to one another, communicate well, and share healthy habits, is a crucial part to a sustainable sobriety. It is vital to build new, healthy connections. Likewise, it is also imperative to RE-build those relationships that have suffered the wounds of substance abuse.
The great news is that there are excellent resources out there for families and their loved ones, to assist in that process. They provide a structured way to address issues within relationships, which can transform once negative patterns into more effective and healthy interactions.
These changes do not happen overnight, but with the right support and guidance, once sour relationships can be nurtured to life again.
Acquiring the right tools can take sometime, but once you put them to use, lives can be changed for the better. We hope that through this blog, you will be able to gather a few tools that will revolutionize your relationships.
Debra Jay, the author, brings her years of experience in the field through her book It takes a Family. This book serves as a “model that shows family members both how to take personal responsibility and to build a circle of support to meet the obstacles common to the first year of recovery.” In addressing the addict, we must also look at the dynamics with in the family environment. As Debra puts it, “saving the addict is about saving our families. Addiction crashes into lives, altering families in a manner that threatens all we hold dear.”
Structured Family and Recovery supports the backbone of this book. The program provides additional resources to help families better navigate life with a recovering loved one. It truly does take a family, and with the support of a program like SFR, real change can take place. There is hope.
“People want solutions for addiction that preserve family rather than break it apart. If solutions force them into positions they’re not likely to move forward”.
This team approach gets families working together, uncovering the damaged areas and fixing the foundation. It takes a Family allows its readers to relate into the discussions, interact with the weekly chapters, and put the practical tools into action. SFR also works on helping families getting acclimated to Al-non, a support group for families that meets weekly. (For more information on Al-non click here.)
Disentangle, another great read for families, is founded on the theme of relationships. The author, Nancy Johnson, does a beautiful job uncovering these themes. She presents tangible, practicable tools for families of who have found themselves entangled in their loved ones. As families and their loved ones access the tools, this can really help one to figure out roles in the recovery process. In doing so, it allows “enough space [to establish] a stronger self so you can then decide what to do about the relationship in which you are entangled”.
It is essential to remember that each family member will encounter their own recover process. That is what becoming entangled is all about. Untangling yourself from that relationship so that you are able to go through your own process as part of the process.
“It doesn’t matter if family relationships are rocky. Addiction always damages relationships to one degree or another. The process of working together rebuilds families”. Structured Family Recovery “creates a framework that helps families succeed at recovery and avoid the pitfalls that lead to relapse. We make it together, not by fixing each other, but by mending ourselves”.
It takes a Family... It takes a village… It takes time. But at the end of the day, lives are transformed, relationships mended, and the fight to keep on living well, continues to bloom.
If you or someone you know is a family member in need of treatment, there are resources available. If you are a family member of friend supporting a supporting a loved one there are also resources available. We at Bridging the Gaps are here to get you connected, provide support, and foster a space for healing for both persons to occur.
Contact us at (540) 535-1111 to speak more about how you can get involved in the family programming that we offer here at BTG!