Are You Helping Them or Dying to Save Them?

“There’s a big difference in your state of well-being when you can practice the art of helping to keep your loved one alive vs. keeping them alive or you’ll die.” ~Andrea Arlington

The family plays a critical role in either their loved one’s addiction or their recovery. When we become solely focused on controlling and conquering our loved one’s substance use disorder, (SUD) and addiction we start to lose our sense of self, our purpose and our well-being. We often get completely off course in our own lives.

The outcome of becoming obsessed about their every move is destructive both to us as individuals, and the family’s dynamics. It can even contribute to our loved one’s sense of guilt and shame as they sense that we are overwhelmingly disappointed and so obsessed that we have let their SUD in a sense, steal or destroy our own lives. This can make them want to escape using their strategy/substance even more than they already are in order not to feel the pain they sense they are causing us.

That’s why it’s so important that parents and families get educated and informed about what their part is in the cycle of the family dynamic. Research shows when the family gets well, the addict has a better chance of getting well.

Unlike traditional family programs that teach parents to let go, detach and let them have the dignity of figuring it out on their own or, “hit bottom”, which in today’s world of Substance Use Disorder is often a death sentence, Families United for Recovery teaches families to take good care of themselves and focus on taking positive actions to help our loved ones move toward recovery while at the same time letting go of the results.

Letting go of the results is accomplished when we know how to use love, leverage and connection in our interactions with our loved ones. One way is to learn how to use short, calm, conversations that are loving in tone, and that act as mini interventions. After, we immediately get on with the business of our day, or on to other topics so that our focus is on living our lives in the moment as individuals and as part of a family.

We can and do contribute either to their SUD/addiction or to their recovery. You can’t control the outcome of their journey but you can contribute to helping them choose recovery and sustain it. Self-care helps us help them.

For more information on how you can help your loved one move toward recovery and sustain it, please contact us at (424)203-4569.


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