When a loved one battles with substance abuse, it affects everyone around them. Grandparents may begin to take on more parental roles since that individual can no longer fulfill family responsibilities. Friends may fade away if they notice significant changes in that person. Not only does a person’s social network become affected, but so does that person’s mental and physical health. Weight loss may occur, and suddenly all of their extra time is spent chasing after something other than what they would usually spend their time on.
It’s common for family members to feel different things at different times, even if their loved one has begun treatment. The lingering pain from being hurt, lied to, stolen from, or blamed can carry on for a while, and it’s a wound that can take many, many years to properly heal. Previous studies have explored exactly how these painful thoughts and emotions can affect a family’s experience with treatment, including being there for their loved one in addition to how the family dynamic is affected outside of recovery as well. Researchers have discovered a number of outcomes that can occur when there are unresolved issues stemming from addiction, such as:
- Backing away from supporting a loved one’s treatment
- Becoming overly controlling or pressuring in recovery
- Holding unrealistic expectations about how quick a loved one is supposed to recover or heal
- Feeling ambivalent about changing attitudes or feeling because of what’s happened
- Ethical dilemmas
- Alliance issues within the family
- Collaboration challenges with therapists
12-Step support groups, such as Al-Anon, can be incredibly helpful to family members who may be having a difficult time working through their thoughts and who may benefit from some spiritual guidance and structure.
If your loved one is ready to seek help, speak with a professional from Alta Loma.
We understand the connection between mental health and substance abuse. Recovery is possible, and there is an entire team of healthcare professionals who truly care about your health and wellbeing. It’s never too late to seek help. Alta Loma is a world-renowned, Texas state-licensed mental health and substance abuse recovery center exclusively for men. We can help you find the roots of your addiction and move forward into a full, healthy life. If you are ready to seek treatment to develop the tools you need to overcome life’s obstacles and be on the road towards happiness, health, and well-being, call us today at (866) 457-3843.