The day has finally come that you and your family and friends will be welcoming home your loved one from their recovery program. They look awesome and sound even better than they ever have before. You are positive and confident about your clean and sober loved one, but something is bothering you a little bit; what now?
Ask Them How You Can Be Supportive
Speaking with them and asking what you can do to be supportive can be a wonderful way to open up communication with your addict or alcoholic. The lines of communication between you and this person most likely haven’t been very strong lately and may need some healing. Communication is key in any relationship; especially in one where you’re dealing with someone who is going through a radical lifestyle change.
Check Out Al-anon Meetings
Al-anon is a free support group that serves people just like you: the loved ones of addicts and alcoholics. These meetings provide encouragement and coping methods for dealing with the emotional and physical stress that can accompany supporting a loved one in recovery. Seeking support for yourself is two-fold in its beneficial aspect. It might encourage your recovering loved one to feel more comfortable and overall positive towards seeking support for themselves in the form of recovery and aftercare support services, when they witness you getting support.
Speak With Their Therapist
Depending on if your loved one is comfortable with it; see if you can speak with their therapist from treatment. When they are in treatment they develop a very close relationship with their therapist and this could be the best person (especially in a professional sense) to help you figure out what steps to take with your loved one.
Manage Your Expectations
This is also something your loved one will be working on in their program of recovery. It’s important to have realistic expectations about the recovery process and realize that, just like with any other major life changes and adjustments, there will be ups and downs. So, remind yourself that your loved one will not be able to behave ‘perfectly’ right away; often times, recovering addicts and alcoholics who have recently completed a treatment program will need time in order to adjust to life outside of rehab.
Develop a Support System of Your Own
Going to Al-anon meetings can be a great way to have support through this difficult time but it is also important to have a support system of your own. Creating a strong group of friends who you can turn to (which can be individuals you meet in Al-anon) can be very vital to your own recovery from the disease of addiction and the parts of it that have affected your everyday life. When you’re having a rough day and need someone to talk to, it is wonderful to have people you can call who are there for you no matter what.
When your loved one completes treatment it can be a very emotional time. You have high hopes for them to do well, but it’s important that they discover their path to recovery on their own time. You can be a support but you can’t enable or do it for them.
If you or a loved one are struggling with the disease of addiction, please call toll free 1-844-422-6926 today.