Family Restructuring Therapy
When an individual develops an addiction to alcohol or drugs, he or she begins to experience a number of effects as a result of the harmful, progressive disease. The effects of chemical dependency range from physical and health effects—changes in weight and complexion, poor hygiene and eating habits, and so on—to mental, emotional, social, and even spiritual. Individuals who are addicted to alcohol and drugs suffer from a brain disease that causes dramatically altered patterns of thought, manifesting as an obsessive preoccupation with seeking and consuming mind-altering substances. Each day in an addict’s life revolves around the same routines, resulting in the sacrifice of many things that had previously been important.
Perhaps, even more prominent than the physical and health effects of addiction, the psychological and behavioral changes that result from the development of an addiction can transform an individual with aspirations and much potential into someone who barely resembles who he or she once was. Moreover, in addition to affecting individuals from every point on the demographic spectrum, addiction is a disease that has a profound effect on virtually all the people in an addict’s life, such as one’s spouse or romantic partner, parents, offspring, siblings, friends, colleagues and co-workers, and many others. In short, alcohol and drug addiction can cause a variety of problems in individuals’ relationships, exacerbating what is already a very difficult situation.
Addiction & the Family Unit
The thought of addiction conjures images of the devastation the disease has to one’s physical health as well as the potential for financial ruin and even homelessness. However, addiction is often called the “family disease” due to the profound effects it can have to the family unit. Whether the family member suffering from alcohol or drug addiction is the teenage offspring or a parent, addiction in the family unit can cause feelings of animosity, resentment, distrust, anxiety, aggravation, and even depression in each individual. In the case of an offspring who has become addicted to mind-altering substances, relationships with parents and siblings are compromised or even broken as the addict’s loved ones struggle with wanting to be supportive without enabling and firm without being unreasonable. Enabling is especially common in the family members of codependent loved ones, who fear the addict will reject or abandon them if they try to deter the addictive behaviors.
When it’s a parent who suffers from addiction, the effects are almost more than one could count. Being a parent means not only providing for oneself, but also for one’s family; therefore, a parent developing an addiction to alcohol or drugs will greatly affect each member of the individual’s family. As the developing dependency becomes more expensive, the family will experience increasing financial trouble, which could possibly progress to the point of jeopardizing one’s home. Moreover, even the most functional addicts eventually lose great jobs and other opportunities, compounding the risk to a family’s stability. Research has also indicated that the children of addicts are significantly more likely to become addicts themselves, either due to a genetic link to chemical dependency or due to a tendency for children to unconsciously adopt parents’ behaviors. In short, the alcohol or drug addiction of a parent can put not only a family’s immediate stability at risk but also jeopardize the current and future well-being of offspring.
Why is Family Restructuring Therapy Necessary During Intensive Outpatient Treatment?
Recovery might begin at the individual level, but family-level treatment is also an important component of rehabilitation. Over the course of active addiction, members of an addict’s family suffer a number of considerable effects due to a loved one’s addiction. Moreover, the addiction can cause misunderstandings, animosities, resentment, and many other negative emotions in members of a family, and with emotions running high it can be incredibly difficult to communicate effectively. Family restructuring support is a form of action-oriented, focused counseling for the family unit, helping individuals to learn more about the disease with which a loved one is suffering in an effort to become more understanding and empathetic. The ultimate goal of family restructuring support is to help restore peace and unity to the family unit as the addicted individual continues on the path to recovery from addiction.
How Guardian Intensive Outpatient Can Help Your Family Rebuild
As part of our intensive outpatient curriculum, we offer family restructuring support as a means of helping patients and their families heal from alcohol and drug addiction. An individual’s family often represents their most important and treasured relationships, but these are also the relationships that tend to be most directly affected by alcohol and drug addiction. Family restructuring support at Guardian Intensive Outpatient is a treatment in which patients and the members of their families will be guided through a state of dysfunction toward a place of balance, health, and communication. It’s essential that family members have a thorough understanding of the disease of addiction in order to have a better understanding of an addicted loved one and his or her recovery needs. Moreover, we hope to identify those behaviors that have existed in the family unit and have allowed the addiction to continue while teaching family members how to reinforce an individual’s sobriety. Having positive relationships with family members will serve to reinforce an individual’s recovery with the support, encouragement, and understanding of loved ones.
Begin Again with Family Restructuring Therapy at Guardian Recovery Network IOP
Addiction is a family disease that requires family treatment. At Guardian Intensive Outpatient, we incorporate family restructuring support into our time-tested, evidence-based curriculum so that individuals and their loved ones can progress on the path toward a state of health and peace. If you or your loved one is suffering from chemical dependency, let Guardian IOP help. Call today so one of our recovery specialists can match you or your loved one to the program that best suits individual needs. A better life is just a phone call away. Call us now at 1-855-517-1871.