Addiction impacts the entire family. Substance abuse co-occurring with psychiatric disorders can make matters even worse, taking a toll on everyone involved. 


Substance abuse affects the family unit emotionally and financially, destroying relationships once central to the addict’s life.


Emotional Impact
  • Family members experience emotions ranging from guilt and embarrassment to confusion, denial, and uncertainty. The chronic stress on each family member can lead to elevated anxiety, depression, and insomnia. Addiction is a lifetime disease, and chronic stress for parents, siblings, and other family members can lead to mental health disorders for each individual. 


Financial Demands
  • Treatment facilities are costly and can deplete a family’s finances. It is difficult to balance wanting to help the addict by sending them to treatment and staying on top of your finances. Additionally, there is a fine line between enabling the addict and helping the addict. It is difficult to determine and set boundaries with regards to where the family ends, and the addict begins. Confusion and uncertainty about setting appropriate financial boundaries can be challenging for the family.


Relationship Strains
  • Addiction damages relationships between family members. The disease breaks down connections within the family unit and with each member’s relation to the addict. Living with and having a relationship with an addict is a life-long process, even if the family has no contact with the addict. Resentment, anger, and fear persist long after the treatment has ended. Concern over the future and uncertainty of trusting the recovering addict is troublesome. Each family member has triggers surrounding their relationship with the addict that are difficult to navigate without guidance. 
  • Relationship challenges for the addict include being haunted by their past behaviors, guilt, remorse, and shame. Addicts have their own triggers with regards to their former environment, including prior relationships. The addict needs to repair damaged relationships and win back the trust of the family.


Recovery is a long growth process that includes a continued care plan with both the addict the family unit. It requires gentleness and willingness of everyone involved for recovery, including the family.


At Alta Loma Transformational Living, you will meet knowledgeable, compassionate professionals that understand addiction in all its forms.  Alta Loma uses an integrative and holistic approach to treat addiction and mental health issues. No treatment is one-size-fits-all, where you will have a team of experts prepared to create your customized treatment plan.  We offer care for your mind, body, and spirit, so that you can heal from the inside out and look forward to a lifetime of sobriety and wellness. If you are ready to take the first step in your recovery, please call us at 866-457-3843.