Friends and family members are instrumental in the recovery of a loved one with an addiction. A strong support circle can keep a person with an addiction on track and focused on their recovery. However, missteps from friends and family can also cause unintended harm to their loved one’s recovery, especially during their return from drug addiction treatment. While it is entirely understandable that you want to support and help your loved one during their time of need in any way possible, you must also be considerate of what to do — and don’t do — when a loved one comes home from their drug addiction treatment.
- Get Informed About Recovery: Inform yourself about recovery and what it entails. Learn more about addiction and common recovery pitfalls so you and the person you’re supporting can try to avoid them. Doing all of this will allow you to know what to expect and to have realistic expectations. Having a greater understanding of recovery will also help you better support your loved one.
- Ensure a Sober Environment: One of the best things that you can do for a loved one returning from drug addiction treatment is have them come home to an environment free of alcohol and addictive substances. This includes medications, which should be secured and kept away from the person in recovery. In place of drugs and alcohol, you should also look to fill your home with items that give off positive energy. This can be plants or even motivational books. Establishing an environment that encourages sober behavior reduces the chances of a relapse.
- Find New Interests: To prevent your loved one from reverting to old habits and behaviors, you want to help them find new interests. Occupying their mind with unique attractions and activities will divert their attention from cravings and pessimistic thoughts. Hobbies are a great way to keep your loved one busy and focused on achieving a goal. You may even want to join them and have a shared experience in learning something new together.
- Drink or Use Substances around Your Loved One: It is imperative that you and those around the person in recovery do not drink or use any substances when in their presence; it sets a bad example and can even tempt them into relapse. Instead, focus on finding new activities and hobbies that will keep your loved one’s mind away from substance use.
- Enable Bad Behavior: The desire to accommodate your loved one, especially upon their return from drug rehab, is entirely understandable. However, you cannot allow yourself to enable bad behavior. You must hold your loved one accountable for their mistakes and help them realize the error of their ways. This is the only way a person in recovery will learn from their mistakes and not repeat them in the future.
- Make Them Feel Left Out: Feeling left out and excluded can make it more difficult for someone returning from drug addiction treatment to stay on the right path. Make your loved one feel supported and include them in as many social activities as possible. This helps ease their transition to their new, healthier lifestyle and helps keep them on track toward recovery. The last thing that your loved one needs is to feel alienated and different because of their past behaviors.
Recovering from addiction is no easy task, and it requires support and guidance to happen. Ensure that your loved one gets proper help by reaching out to Twin Town Treatment Centers and our five drug and alcohol rehabilitation centers throughout the Los Angeles and Orange County area. Our individualized outpatient programs and drug addiction treatments have been personalized to account for our patients’ unique needs and circumstances. Get in touch today by calling us at (866) 594-8844 or filling out our online form to get started. Our team of drug and alcohol treatment professionals will provide you with a no-cost interview and assessment for alcohol and drug issues.