Three Strategies on How to Care for Yourself While a Loved One is in Treatment
You’ve done all you can to make sure a loved one is finally getting the addiction treatment he or she needs. Now it’s equally as crucial for you to get the support and care you need while your loved one begins their journey to sobriety. It’s time for you to find your center again. Here are three helpful tips for caring for yourself while your loved one is in rehab.
Seek Out a Support Network
Knowing that you’re not alone is vital during this process. Growing your social network will help you cope with the issues faced while your loved one recovers from addiction.
You need support during this crucial time, and sometimes you need people who understand what you are going through. Fortunately, there are many local and national support groups for those with loved ones in rehab. A few well-known groups are:
- AL-ANON – a support group for people affected by another person’s alcohol addiction.
- NAR-ANON – a support group for people affected by a loved one’s substance use.
- ALATEEN – a support group for teens affected by a loved one’s addiction to alcohol.
- ADULT CHILDREN OF ALCOHOLICS – a support group for adults whose childhood was affected by a parent’s addiction to alcohol or drugs.
Whether it’s a support group, friends, family or fellowship, having a strong group of people who lift you up and support you will help keep you stable during this difficult time.
The Importance of Self-Care
Dealing with someone you love during active addiction can leave significant scars and issues in a relationship. And even though your loved one is getting the help he or she needs, you are left to deal with the emotional, and financial fall-out left behind. So now what? It’s time for self-care and healing. The rehab facility your loved one is attending will offer family care and counseling. These services are invaluable and should be utilized during this process. If they don’t provide these services, find a reputable psychologist, preferably someone with a specialty in addiction counseling. Make sure you are comfortable with this therapist as you will need their help for a reasonable period of time.
Self-care should also take the form of rest and recovery. You’ve been through a lot to get to this moment with your loved one and probably haven’t showered, seen friends, or slept in weeks. Make sure to take time for you and go out with friends, exercise, or have a spa day. If you have children, see if you can get some childcare help and maybe take a weekend to sleep in and rest. You need to distance yourself from the cycle of stress you were used to dealing with, and getting away, even for one night, can be beneficial to your health. It is time to press the reset button on your life, so whatever that looks like to you – do it. Not dealing with the emotional, physical, and spiritual fall-out from a loved one’s addiction can be dangerous to your well-being and the success of your loved one in recovery.
Online addiction support and chat groups are also very helpful in learning how to cope with a loved one in addiction rehab, but also to find comfort in knowing you are not alone. Sobriety apps like Calm and Headspace are also beneficial as you can use them at any time to regain your emotional and spiritual center.
It’s Okay to Be Happy
Maybe you’ve spent years pleading with your significant other to enter a drug rehabilitation facility, and they’ve finally started a program. Or perhaps you’ve spent months planning an intervention to help a family member to get the addiction support and treatment he or she needs. During this time, you’ve probably lost friends or family members, sacrificed jobs, cried yourself to sleep, thrown a few dishes, and gone into debt. You may feel guilty about wanting to start a new life while a loved one is in rehab. Guilt is a common emotion to have during this process and you need to be gentle on yourself for all of the feelings and emotions that come up while a loved one is in recovery. The one thing you do need to remember is – it’s okay to want to be happy again, and the reality is – you deserve it. You’ve done everything you can and you are amazing. Now it’s time to taking care of yourself, find happiness again, and developing a robust support system. These actions will help you stay healthy and positive during a time you will need it the most.
If you need support with a loved one in recovery, Silver Lining Recovery is here for you. With the help of our professionally trained staff, we offer individual and group counseling sessions to help families deal with the stress and issues often experienced while a loved one is in treatment. If you or a loved one is ready to enter an addiction program, call us at Silver Lining Recovery (866) 448-4563. We understand this is a very difficult time and are here to support you during this difficult process.