In the early stages of recovery, a flurry of emotions can overwhelm the newly sober person and their family. The freedom from drugs and alcohol can evoke positive feelings which can be diluted when the parties involved consider the differences between rehab and home. The concern for many is that the rehab setting had round the clock guidance and support, and the sober person now has to reintegrate into a society where it is essential to take responsibility for every decision made.
Consequently, the overwhelming realization that the reunited family now has to institute a recovery plan of their own, leads to relapse. Recovery is a lifelong commitment which requires family, friends, and other support systems to play a role in helping the sober person; in spite of the fears. For most families, the first three months are a gray area because they are plagued with difficulties arising from the concerns that the family is exerting a lot of pressure on the sober person or giving up too much power to them.
Strategies to Help Them Readjust
Prepare a Warm Welcome
Conflicting thoughts often affect a recovering addict. Some addicts tend to think of the conundrum they got themselves into and begin to think everyone despises them. The best way to help your loved one adjust is to treat them normally when they come back. Eliminate any inhibitions or judgmental thoughts and let your loved one know how proud you are of them and the happiness that you feel seeing them sober. Encourage the person to continue the treatment process. Supportive words will accelerate the recovery process.
Develop a Recovery Plan
If the addict is living in the home, it is essential to develop a comprehensive recovery plan that includes realistic goals as well as a discussion on the possible consequences of failing to meet various goals. It is important to be free with your loved one about their substance abuse. Open all channels for your loved one to talk to you whenever cravings tempt a relapse. The worst thing that families can do is to pretend as if nothing happened and try to start a new chapter without creating a recovery plan. The best recovery plans are always crafted together with the addict. Families should review accurate information on how to create an effective recovery plan to ensure that they act from the point of knowledge.
Admission to a rehab center deals a big blow to both the family and the addict. Subsequently, both parties need help. It is imperative that the affected family members garner knowledge on addiction. Some rehab centers offer to train affected families on addiction and strategies to handle stress. The entire family needs to take such opportunities seriously to get involved in the treatment and recovery processes. Having such knowledge is crucial in helping your loved one adjust after rehab.
Create a Safe Environment
Although life has to go back to normal after rehab, family members often make it difficult for loved ones to adjust after rehab. It is vital that you support sobriety by creating an alcohol and drug-free environment. Families have to try and adopt sober lifestyles. The home should be emptied of substances that might provoke the newly sober family member to relapse. If alcohol and other recreational drugs were the norms in social events in the house, it might be time to get rid of them to support your loved one.
Create New Hobbies
Addicts get to the point of addiction because they have the time to abuse drugs. Following rehab, it is essential to find new hobbies with your loved one to ensure that they do not have too much time on their hands. More importantly, you need to ensure that the destructive friendships that your loved one had before rehab, come to an end. Talk to your loved one and tell them how you feel about the negative friendships. Let them know how much progress they have made and the joy the family experienced to see them get well. You can reignite the spark for an old hobby in your loved one such as art or sports.
Encourage Support Groups
Support groups are often underestimated. It is vital to motivate your loved one to join a support group after rehab. Apart from the robust support system you create as a family, it is essential that your loved one has people to talk to outside of the home setting. It introduces some level of objectivity in the treatment process. Your loved one might feel like you are giving subjective advice if they do not hear it from other people. Your loved one needs to be accountable to people who are close to them other than you.