Being the Parents of Addicted Adults
Medically Reviewed By: Dr. Patricia Sullivan, MD MPH on 5/2/2022
Parenting is a difficult job. In addition, being the parents of addicted adults adds a challenge most parents are not prepared for. For those in need of a guide for parents of addicted young adults, it is more challenging still. So many questions arise when dealing with addicted children that often parents do not know where to find answers.
When looking for a guide for parents of addicted young adults, we must explore entirely new avenues as the answers are neither handy nor clear. However, with the stigmas still attached to drug use, finding help without social consequences is near impossible. Call us today at (385) 327-7418. Our team of professionals will help you beat the addiction. Call today and start your road to sobriety now.
Furthermore, here are some answers and places to go for help.
Understanding Substance Abuse Disorders
Addiction is a brain disease manifested by compulsive substance use no matter what the consequences. People suffering from substance use disorders (SUDs) display distorted thinking and behavior. However, they also show chemical changes in the areas of the brain that govern judgment, decision making, learning, memory, and behavior.
Intoxication, or a “high,” is the extreme pleasure, calm, and sensory change felt by a drug. As these feelings decrease over time due to a tolerance buildup, users take larger and larger doses to achieve the same effect.
Generally, individuals start using drugs for one of the following four reasons:
- Feeling good
- Killing pain
- Enhanced performance
- Curiosity and peer pressure
Moreover, SUDs cause health problems, problems at work, and conflict with family members and friends. In addition, the misuse of these drugs is the leading cause of preventable diseases and premature death.
How Addiction Affects the Family
Substance use disorders (SUDs) affect the whole family. The family context holds information about how SUDs develop and what can positively or negatively influence the treatment of the disorder.
Furthermore, each family member is uniquely affected by the individual using substances. The possible problems include unmet needs, impaired attachment, financial or legal problems, emotional distress, and violence.
In conclusion, families need education about SUDs and their development, progression, and treatment. However, when family members have appropriate education and treatment for themselves, they can play a significant role in the abusers’ recognition of the problem and acceptance of treatment. Do you want more information about SUDs? Then call us today. We will ensure you are fully equipped with what you need to help someone struggling with addiction.
Being a Parent of a Drug-Addicted Adults
The parents of drug-addicted adults will remain important sources of attachment, nurturing, and socialization for that child. So, when we look at treatment, treating the addicted person has very limited effectiveness without an analysis of the impact they have on their environment and vice versa. This shows both the importance and complexity of the family.
Because of their natural inclination to nurture their child, some parents of addicted adults fall into the trap of enabling. This is a form of accommodation that protects the person with the SUD from the consequences of their actions. As a result, the addiction is more likely to continue.
For instance, some tips for parents of addicted adults include the following:
- Ask for help from professionals.
- Encourage your son/daughter to attend self-help groups, both while a person is in treatment and after.
Note that support groups exist to provide help for parents of drug-addicted adults as well as other family members.
How Can the Family Come Together to Help?
What do I do? How can I help? Both are excellent questions parents of addicted adults ask. Furthermore, there is plenty you can do for your child. Be there for them without judgment. You can find new activities to enjoy together without alcohol or drugs. In addition, setting healthy goals like eating or exercising together is excellent.
It is important for a person to deal with addiction to change their behaviors. However, it is also important for loved ones to support and welcome that change. Be sure to acknowledge progress. Speak up and offer your support during this process of getting clean.
We can lose a loved one quickly to addiction. Do not wait until it is too late; express your love and concern now. They may respond with excuses or anger, but do not give up. Give them examples of behaviors that have you so concerned. Then let them know you are afraid of losing them.
Recovery is an ongoing process. So is the support of recovery. Once the family is involved, stay involved. Continue to show how much you want them to succeed in long-term recovery. Because they need you. We can help you. So call us today. Our team of experts is here to provide you with any assistance you need.
No-No’s for the Family
The addicted person is already suffering enough. They do not need to feel any worse, no matter what your intention. If talking has not worked so far, lectures, threats, bribes, or preaching will not help now. Avoid emotional appeals. Because guilt rarely motivates an addict to do anything but console themselves with more drugs.
As people who care, we must not make excuses or lie to the addict. When we do so, we are condoning his behavior. Also, do not take on his responsibilities. This protects the addict from the consequences of his behavior and thus amounts to enabling.
Above all, do not blame yourselves. You did not cause this. You are not responsible for this. Being the family member or parent of an addicted adult child is difficult. As a parent, your instinct is to protect them, keep them safe, and fix it, no matter how old they are. But this time you can’t. Because this is something the addict must do themselves.
What are the Treatment Options for My Son or Daughter?
The first step is the addict must recognize his or her problem. Many times, an intervention with family and friends can benefit the addict and prompt him or her to get help. Next, depending on the individual’s situation, different treatment options are available.
A combination of medication and individual or group therapy is usually the most effective. Another important part is also treating any other issues-medical, psychiatric, social-that could lead to long-term recovery.
However, other treatment options include hospitalization, therapeutic communities or sober houses, and outpatient programs. So, call us today, and we will help you find the right type of treatment for you and your child.
In conclusion, no matter what your current situation, help for parents of drug-addicted adults is available and there is hope. However, what is important to remember is this:
- The addiction is not your fault.
- Do not ever give up on them, even if you must use some tough love.
- He or she would never want you to be hurt because of this. Take care of yourself first, then do what you can for them.
- All you can do is work together as a family to help however you can.
It will not always be pretty or pleasant or fun, but if we do it together, we can make a difference. Every person fighting a SUD is someone’s child. Every child is worth saving, no matter how old. Call us today, and then we can work on finding you the best treatment options.
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