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Addiction is a Family Disease

Living With an Alcoholic Parent - The Bergand Group

Addiction is a disease that affects the whole family. Whether the addict is a parent, child or even a close family friend, addiction creates suffering within the whole family. “Addiction is a family disease that stresses the family to the breaking point, impacts the stability of the home, the family’s unity, mental health, physical health, finances, and overall family dynamics.” When addiction goes untreated, a family can be broken apart. Loss of trust and strained family dynamics are all effects of addiction. Families must learn how to cope with addiction in order to maintain a healthy recovery.

Accepting That Addiction is a Family Disease

Sometimes, those involved with an addict believe that if the addict can just get help for themselves, everything will return back to normalcy. This can’t be further from the truth. While an addict seeking help is one of the major hurdles that propels those suffering towards recovery, things will not just fall back into place as if nothing happened. The family must group together and work towards healing what was disrupted during drug or alcohol abuse. While an addict is responsible for their personal recovery, family members are as well. Restoring the family to a healthy unit facilitates sobriety.

How Can a Family Reconnect After Addiction?

-Seek support. Joining a support group will connect you with like-minded individuals who can act as a sounding board for coping mechanisms.
-Practice Communication. Learning communication skills, and ensuring that they are positive, is important during recovery.
-Do Not Enable. Break old habits and do not enable the recovering addict. This part of recovery is all about taking responsibility for your own actions.
-Engage Children. Children also need support during this time. Engaging children in open discussion will help them feel that they play an important role in recovery of the family unit.
-Appreciate Resilience. When a family goes through drug or alcohol recovery, a certain resilience is formed. Building this together helps support growth.
-Find Fulfillment. Finding fulfillment personally, and as a family, will strengthen connections. This can include anything from volunteering to engaging in an intramural sport.
-Prepare For Relapse. When an addict gets sober, there is always a chance for relapse. Taking certain precautions, such as joining a Relapse Prevention program, will be educational.

Due to the fact that addiction is a family disease, it takes some time to recover. Working together on overcoming this hardship will create stronger family bonds and help heal damage done during an addiction. For support with healing addiction for the whole family, get in touch with The Bergand Group. The Bergand Group, serving Baltimore and Harford County, offers addiction recovery programs for everyone involved with an addiction.

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About The Bergand Group:

At The Bergand Group in Baltimore and Harford County, Maryland, our therapists have more than twenty years of experience in the mental health and addiction fields. Our focus is on providing comprehensive mental health care and appropriate care for addictive disorders. We offer both alcohol rehabilitation and drug rehabilitation. If you or someone you know is struggling with alcohol or substance addiction, there is help available. We also offer several other services, including family therapy and counseling. We can help. Contact us today.


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