Sober living

How Family Can Play an Important Role in Addiction Recovery

Alateen is another support group that includes teen family members who help each other heal and discuss complications from witnessing a loved one abuse harmful substances. With both support groups, family members can feel connected to the recovery process and provide input over their experiences. Mothers, fathers, sons, daughters, nieces, nephews, and cousins discuss their challenges with a loved one’s substance abuse. Like other 12-Step groups, Al-Anon members use spiritual themes to encourage acceptance and compassion. However, family members can help their loved one achieve and maintain sobriety. Despite seeing a loved one struggle, family members can and ideally do play a major role in the treatment process.

  • Routine SU screening is recommended as a part of routine healthcare for all youth (Levy & Williams, 2016), and evidence suggests that youth-facing healthcare providers are increasingly adopting this practice (Levy et al., 2017).
  • Substance use disorder may include alcohol misuse, but it can involve misuse of other substances as well.
  • Increased collaboration between investigators and treatment providers with dyadic and family expertise pertaining to AUD is warranted in future integrated and large-scale efforts.
  • When each family member invests in their own healing, the entire unit together is better prepared for the long recovery road ahead.

This is then followed by a review of the array of interventions influenced by cognitive behavioral therapy (CBT) and family systems models. Table 1 provides a summary of key elements in each of the treatments reviewed. The need for integrated delivery of adolescent substance abuse and co-occurring family support in addiction recovery disorder services into a seamless continuum of prevention, early intervention, treatment, and recovery support is paramount. This approach focuses on empowering families, developing funding strategies, supporting family choice of service options, and measuring the outcomes of family involvement.

Parental Substance Abuse Effects on Children

Boundaries are essential for maintaining a healthy relationship and ensuring that support does not turn into enabling. For the individual in recovery, boundaries provide a clear understanding of acceptable behaviors and the consequences of their actions. Your loved ones can assume healthy roles and behaviors, like holding you accountable for your actions, to encourage and support recovery. For instance, your parent may act as a supportive yet firm caregiver who encourages you to take positive and thoughtful action. Your loved ones can also provide emotional support, understanding, and acceptance to help you stay motivated in recovery.

  • Conversations should stay optimistic and realistic—acknowledge their hard work and express your belief that they can overcome these challenges.
  • Family engagement can lead to fewer relapses, longer duration between relapses, reduced hospital admissions, shorter inpatient stays, and improved compliance to medication and treatment plans.
  • The Blanchard Institute cultivates a safe, comfortable environment for clients and families across North Carolina to be emotionally connected to their treatment provider.
  • It is well-established that utilizing multiple sources of information to detect youth SU is more accurate than relying on any single source (Winters, 1999).
  • However, research reveals the widespread adverse consequences of addiction on family members, often persisting even during recovery.

As families navigate this challenging path, their support can become a powerful force in making the road to recovery less daunting and more hopeful. It’s a time when the individual in recovery may explore new hobbies, rebuild relationships, and reintegrate into society, all of which can be significantly bolstered by family support. This period also requires families to adapt to the changes in their loved one and the evolving family dynamics. It is critically important for family members to learn to engage in healthy self-care.

Offer Unconditional Love and Support

Milestones could look like attending therapy sessions regularly, reaching sobriety cornerstones,  or simply having a good day. You can personalize celebrations to what your loved one finds meaningful and enjoyable, such as a favorite meal or a small gathering with close friends and family. Your loved ones can encourage you to seek professional help for your addiction. They can also help you find a reputable treatment program and support your decision to seek treatment. With both in-person and virtual options, the Children’s Program can help children learn self-care skills and how to make healthy choices when their care giver struggles with addiction. Facilitators will apply culturally relevant tools, comfort, support and proven resources for participants in this two-hour session for Spanish speaking family members.

Effects of Alcoholism on the Family – Addiction – Verywell Mind

Effects of Alcoholism on the Family – Addiction.

Posted: Mon, 18 Sep 2023 07:00:00 GMT [source]

A key point to understand is that families are both affected and are affected by loved ones who struggle with SUDs. The family and/or friend system has its own personality, just as much as the individual members who are a part of the family. CRAFT (discussed above; Smith & Meyers, 2007) is a provider-delivered intervention sometimes advertised as effective for improving the personal well-being of parents of youth, or spouses of adults, with SUD. However, few studies have rigorously examined CRAFT impacts on the wellness of significant others (Archer et al., 2020), and findings to date are mixed (e.g., Bischof et al., 2016; Kirby et al., 2017).


To be fair, SAMHSA’s (2020b) comprehensive roadmap makes extensive recommendations for involving families in SUD treatment. Beyond aspiration, actually transforming SUD systems of care to become relationship-oriented will require greater system-wide attunement to familial relationships and to cultural context characteristics that shape user experiences of SUD services (Kirmayer et al., 2016). It will also require a shift towards relational conceptualizations of problems and solutions, more fluid and flexible roles for youth and CSO, thicker and more complex narratives of youth and family lives, and from “alone” to “together” in SUD treatment.