Having the love and support of your family can be a true blessing on the road to long-term sobriety. After all, abusing drugs or alcohol can isolate you from the people you love and who truly care about you, too. Part of recovery, then, is learning to rebuild those relationships so you can have a positive support system in place. The stronger your family ties, the less risk of relapse while building a new, sober life.
Here are a few strategies that can help you grow closer together.
Share a meal. Taking a few moments out of your busy schedule to enjoy a meal with your family is a great way to spend quality time together. And, in fact, it’s the perfect setting to share stories and catch up. Schedule a standing dinner date each week and ask everyone to bring a dish so it’s not too overwhelming or too expensive.
Connect without being connected. You can’t really give your spouse or children undivided attention if you’re constantly checking your smart phone. By turning it on silent or putting it out of sight, you’ll show them that you are making them a priority.
Pick up the phone. Social media and text messaging has its perks but to develop a more meaningful relationship it’s often best to pick up the phone and give family members a call. There’s nothing quite like the sound of each other’s voice or laughter to feel connected.
Family Care at Synergy
When patients work with their families toward recovery, prognosis is greatly enhanced, according to research. At synergy we provide an intensive family care program to help you and your loved ones deal with addiction together. To learn more, call 888-267-8070.
It’s pretty safe to say that a bad day when you’re sober is better than a good one while in active addiction. Yet, unfortunately, this isn’t always enough to help you endure those truly horrible days that are inevitable during recovery. There are a few fairly simple steps you can take, however, to help you muddle through. First and foremost: Remind yourself that things can always be worse and that there are sunnier days ahead!
A few more tips to consider:
- Take a deep breath. Conscious breathing – or inhaling and exhaling deeply and slowly – can help calm you down and focus.
- Write it down. Putting problems down on paper can be mentally freeing. This simple exercise will help you pinpoint what exactly made your day so awful – whether a spat with a spouse or stressful therapy session, for example – so you can move past it.
- Walk out your frustrations. Clear your head and get those endorphins working by taking a brisk walk or long hike. Just being in nature can do wonders for putting things in perspective.
- Go on a cleaning spree. Some experts say that having outer order is a great way to find inner peace.
- Find a positive distraction. It’s okay to try to forget about your day – as long as you do it in a healthful way. Some ideas: read a book, watch a movie, meet a good friend, pop in a yoga DVD.
- Lean on others. Sometimes you just need a friend, loved one or sponsor to help talk you down from a bad day.
Mental Health Help at Synergy
Having co-occurring psychiatric disorders can make it that much harder to beat those bad days. Our dual diagnosis treatment gives clients the tools needed to sustain a healthy mind, body, and spirit during recovery and beyond. To learn more, call today: 888-267-8070.
Honesty is the best policy. Sounds very black and white. Once you have entered treatment there is no more grey when it comes to honesty. There is no point in lying. There is no benefit. Everyone losses when the addict enters treatment and continues to lie.
The addict will give many reasons why they feel that telling the truth does more harm than good–afraid they will hurt their family is the most common–, but the reality is that they are just trying to protect themselves. The truth is however, that a lack of honest means that recovery will never be achieved.
Until you are ready to be honest you are not really ready for recovery. Whether you used 6 bags a day or 12; it doesn’t matter. Whether you used 10 roxi’s a day or 15; it doesn’t matter. Continuing to deny that you hocked a family heirloom means that forgiveness will never come. With honesty comes forgiveness and with forgiveness comes starting over. It is when you and your family are ready to start over with a whole new clean state that recovery has a chance. That can never happen without honesty.
Perhaps most important if you can’t be honest with yourself then you can never face your demons it if you don’t face them—THEY WILL WIN. And you will lose!
They call us retreads which basically means that someone has been through treatment more than once without being successful through the different types of research suggesting that certain types of therapy and treatment can be more effective than others. From experience and being in recovery since 1987 I am what we call in the business a “retread” or someone that chronically relapses. I have gone through the best treatments in the world to the so called worse, including halfway houses and detox centers. My experience suggests to me that a multi modality treatment approach is the most effective however, is the aftercare component that plays a big role in the effectiveness of the treatment. There is a severe drop off in effectiveness.
Through research, we have learned that stepping a client slowly through a period of time is the most effective course of action, while continuing to attend self help group within the community, with people that can relate and can offer advise and suggestions. In my experience these are the individuals that are most likely to achieve long term recovery, yet the question still arises, why some get it and some don’t? People die, or go to prison or other institutions as a result of this disease. No one has an answer to this mysterious question, we as professionals must challenge ourselves to that question and seek the means necessary to find the answer to this question.
FOUNDER SYNERGY GROUP SERVICES
Conventional “wisdom” in the field of addiction says that an addict often must “hit bottom” before they will be ready to begin the process of recovery. My question is, “Why does the bottom have to be so deep before that process begins?” Why wait until ones’ life has been completely turned upside down before you realize that you need help. Some would say that the consequences must be great before the disease of addiction finally sinks in. I would say that in most instances consequences don’t matter to an addict. If consequences mattered then the “bottom” would never exist at the point at which an addict’s life is essentially destroyed.
Recently a mother of 3 who drinks too much drank too much in front of her children. It was not the first time. It was not the second time. It has happened on enough occasions that the children could see it coming and implored their Mother not to let it happen. When it did happen they were justifiably upset and the following day the emotional burden was evident on their faces. Evident to everyone it would appear except their Mother. Clearly the Mother has made a choice that her children’s emotional well being is not as important to her as is her alcohol. Shouldn’t the pleas of her children to stop drinking be her “bottom”. Does she really have to wait for someone to get physically hurt or her children to get emotionally scared?
An alcoholic recently received her first DUI. Her attorney told her she did not need to enter treatment. Why not? Is the attorney waiting for her to dive deeper to her “bottom”? Why isn’t the first DUI deep enough? Shouldn’t this be a big enough wake up call to seek treatment before she ends up in jail or someone gets killed?
Lastly an addict in our program is about to lose his family. Estranged from his wife and children, unemployed and just starting to get the message that it is time for help. His problems started years ago but a sense of urgency to change the direction of his life is just catching up to him now. He is too late. His “bottom” is too deep for his family to deal with and they have moved on; emotionally and physically.
I am not sure how we can get the message out to everyone in need. Consequences alone will not do it. We see over and over again that addicts don’t get the message until the “bottom” is so deep that everyone that they care about is jumping ship. We must find a way to bring the “bottom” up to a more acceptable level before lives are destroyed.
There is an old saying, “A fool closes the gate after the horses are gone”. An addict needs to hit his “bottom” before it is too late. Don’t let the bottom be too deep and this won’t happen.