Family Therapy in Treatment

When a lot of people think of those experiencing alcohol and drug addictions, they only think of how those addictions are adversely affecting the lovers themselves. Addicts make poor decisions and mistakes that cause pain and chaos within their lives. Seldom do people consider at first how a habit could be affecting the family of an addict/alcoholic. And more often than perhaps not, many people do not understand how family members and family units may contribute to addiction.

When it involves alcohol and drug habits affecting the household of an addict/alcoholic, it should be noted the affects can be extremely damaging. It is possible that verbal and even physical abuse become issues when an addiction is present. Your family of an addict or alcoholic frequently experiences an excellent number of psychological pain as they view their loved one damage themselves again and again. Trust may be dropped, resentments may create, and the relationships in a family can be very rough between the addict and other family members.

Let’s also maybe not forget that the existence of addiction in one single person in a family can result in the growth of addiction in other members of the family later on. This can be most common with addicted parents setting a good example for their children to follow.

When drugs or alcohol are an integral part of family life, kids learn early on to suppress their emotions, withdraw from family interaction, act out or as an easy way to control their environment self-medicate. Members of the family develop methods for coping that are more and more structural, because addiction and alcoholism are modern. Usually the children are left to fend for themselves or accept the role of parenting other children in the family.

A number of the features that kids develop in response to addiction or alcoholism include:

* Anxiety

* Depression

* Helplessness

* Hypervigilance

* Desire to self medicate

* High danger behavior


Clearly, addressing the family in rehab is essential. If it’s not resolved once rehab is done, while the addict is in therapy the addict can return to exactly the same dysfunctional family system. This increases the incidence of relapse and also sets up the household members for failed relationships in the future. Family therapy will help identify patterns in the family. Therapy can help family increase trust and communication.

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