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Addicted Family Member Support and Healing

Addicted Family Member - The Bergand Group

The concept of family can be vastly different from person to person. For some, it follows the kinds of conventions seen in most textbook examples, but for others, the word alone can have a painful sting. Especially for an addicted family member, the reactions and behaviors of their relatives can make all the difference in the world.

Dealing Appropriately with an Addicted Family Member

Addiction is difficult enough to deal with without the scorn and judgment of others. Unfortunately, this kind of scrutiny is all-too common these days, even from one family member to another. Parents may alienate a child who develops substance abuse habits. Children may cut out a parent who drinks too much. Whatever the situation, the addicted family member may suffer, their condition worsening, without the support of the people that they love.

Some view addiction as a “family disease,” saying that an addicted parent might “pass on” the “addiction gene” to their offspring. However, “if addiction were a purely genetic disorder, then programs would never work quickly.” Support groups and treatment centers would not have nearly the kind of success that they have if addiction was determined by your genetics. Luckily, this isn’t the case.

Many individuals with substance abuse are blamed by their family for some kind of moral or other failing that lead to “giving in” to the lure of the substances. Those outside the family might say that family members gave the person too many chances, too much forgiveness. Whether the blame is coming from in or outside of the family unit, it is massively detrimental to a person that needs support in order to be able to successfully recover. Addiction isn’t something that is easy to deal with in any scenario, but it is enormously worsened if a person is alienated by those who could help.

So, what are some necessary steps that can help substance abuse patients to find support and to bring awareness to their families? The latter have to try and be more patient with the addicted family member and, perhaps most importantly, seek out facts and research about the best ways that they can help. It may be easier to shift the blame, the uncomfortable feelings and guilty, onto a single person, but that will only deepen the rift and hurt the struggling patient. Instead, an effort has to be made to speak with the family member to try and figure out what the next steps toward recovery are.

The patient may not know what those answers are, which is where family therapy or meetings with qualified addiction counselors come in. This may be where the family faces resistance or denial, but allowing the individual to continue his or her abusive habits indefinitely can be just as harmful as outright condemnation. Rather, act as a strong presence, an advocate for change, while also offering an ear or a shoulder as needed. The parent, child, or other relative may take time to come around, and it might necessitate a level of force, but they will be grateful for the support in such a tumultuous time.

Facing an addicted family member is never easy. If you need to find help for someone you care about who is struggling with an addiction, then contact The Bergand Group. We offer recovery programs for yourself or for others or are seeking education materials about addictions. The Bergand Group is Maryland’s leading addiction recovery center and offers support for those struggling with addiction and mental health issues, including direction for those who may be denying an addiction.  We can help you to work through your addiction in a safe and healthy environment where everyone is committed to your care.

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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 rehab 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.[/fusion_builder_column][/fusion_builder_row][/fusion_builder_container]

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