Building a Support System in Recovery: A Step-by-Step Guide

There are strong connections between family functioning and drinking outcomes. Family behaviors can contribute to changes in drinking, and, conversely, changes in drinking can contribute to more positive family functioning. For example, in early studies, Moos and colleagues examined the longitudinal course of functioning in families of men receiving treatment for AUD.

As substance abuse rises, need for additional programs comes into focus, experts say – TribLIVE

As substance abuse rises, need for additional programs comes into focus, experts say.

Posted: Sun, 17 Dec 2023 08:00:00 GMT [source]

Family support can offer understanding and acceptance, which are crucial for healing. Family members who understand addiction as a disease are better equipped to provide the support needed for recovery. It can provide the motivation and encouragement needed to seek help and stay committed to recovery. Family members can offer a sense of belonging and acceptance, which are crucial for rebuilding self-esteem and confidence.

Types of Resources Available

Agencies frequently do not prioritize family-centered outreach or treatment planning (SAMHSA, 2020b). And families themselves experience lack of resources, low confidence, and stigma-related reticence to engage with SUD systems of care (England-Kennedy & Horton, 2011). The effectiveness of peer/community and DTC supports for youth could be bolstered if those approaches intensified their commitment to helping youth augment the strength of their familial networks. This may be especially salient for young adults who are estranged from their families of origin but remain connected with other concerned adults in their family-of-choice circle. Research is needed to evaluate the potential benefits of infusing peer/community and DTC services with family-oriented programming that scaffolds youth to pursue healthy (re)connection with family and (re)investment in familial goals. Establishing boundaries is a crucial, yet often challenging, aspect of supporting a loved one through addiction recovery.

family support in addiction recovery

Ozechowski and colleagues (2016) advocate for the no missed opportunities paradigm, in which practitioners aim to have family members complete a brief screening instrument during every youth clinical encounter. Ideally, such screening instruments are administered in parallel to youth screening tools. The goal of this conjoint approach to screening family support in addiction recovery is to increase the likelihood of case detection and set the stage for family involvement in subsequent stages of the continuum. Evidence suggests that parental reports are fair-to-good proxy measures of youth substance use behavior (McGillicuddy et al., 2012), though they typically underestimate to some degree (Fisher et al., 2006).

Family and Couples Therapy

Assisting a loved one through treatment requires patience, understanding, and a compassionate approach. Your guidance during this time is invaluable; however, remember that you don’t have to do it alone. Depending on the needs of the individual, family therapy may also be included in a treatment plan.

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