Addiction takes a toll not just on the life of the person struggling with a substance use disorder but on everyone close to them. After your loved one has committed to treatment, especially in the case of Residential Treatment, you may feel helpless for their well-being or overwhelmed with your own emotions. That’s why Gateway Foundation’s team develops a personalized treatment plan for each patient to accommodate them plus their support systems.
Although patients are not allowed to use their phones during treatment at Gateway Foundation, you and your loved one can communicate during phone and visiting hours at all Residential locations or opt for an Outpatient Treatment plan for after work and school hours. Gateway Foundation also offers family therapy sessions. If the individual does not wish to see you during treatment, it may be because they need time and space to focus on their recovery without reminders of their outside environment. Remember, they may harbor shame and regret for the past behavior influenced by their substance use disorder.
Below are some tips for coping when a loved one is in treatment:
Don’t blame yourself.
Someone you know who abuses drugs or alcohol may blame you for addressing the problem, or the individual may consider their behavior your problem. Even if you are correct in assessing the substance abuse problem, understand you may be blamed if the person believes the problem is not with oneself but with everybody else. Whatever issues have led an individual to develop an alcohol or drug abuse problem, you are not to blame – addiction is not something that one person can do to another.
Make time for yourself.
To whatever extent someone else’s problem has become a part of your life, it’s still important to take care of yourself. If the situation is affecting your studies or work, make sure you communicate with the appropriate people, such as a professor or employer, so they understand your situation. Don’t feel guilty about spending time doing what you enjoy, such as hobbies or socializing with friends and family.
Work with Gateway Foundation to find support groups for people with loved ones in treatment or recovery. If you prefer one-on-one support or would like anonymous support, consider scheduling therapy sessions.