Overcoming from an addiction is an incredibly challenging process. Watching a loved one struggle with breaking the repeating cycle from drugs or alcohol is heart-wrenching for a family member and they often wonder how they can help.
It’s important for friends and family members to realize they cannot go through the resporation process for their loved one and that they cannot make their loved one quit destructive behavior. However, there are a few things they can do to support their loved one through this difficult time. If you have a loved one moving along the pathway to restoration, here is what you can do to help.
Learn More About the Process
Learning as much as you can about the process helps you provide appropriate support. When you know what symptoms your loved one is experiencing, signs of relapse, and specific triggers you can help them avoid, you can better support them on their path to restoration. Read everything you can about recovery and consider talking with a specialist or attending a support group like Al-Anon.
Express an Interest in Helping
It may seem obvious to you that you’re there to help your loved one however you can, but they may not see it that way. Make sure you tell them that you are there for them and that you want to support them in this difficult process. Sometimes all they need is for you to extend a helping hand to accept your support and ease their path to restoration.
Lecturing a loved one or telling them what they should do is not helpful and will likely cause your loved one to pull away. In many situations, your loved one simply wants someone to listen. They may want to talk about the challenges they are experiencing or their fears about what lies at the road ahead. Other times, they may want to talk about anything other than the restoration process. The important thing is to be there to listen compassionately.
Create a Supportive Environment
Whether they live with you or not, creating a supportive environment where they can come for help and support is imperative in helping your loved one. Part of this includes taking care of yourself so that you have the strength and energy to help them when they need it. It’s also important to remove triggers from your home that could lead to a relapse. Setting appropriate boundaries with your loved one will also help both of you navigate the process successfully.
It’s never easy watching a loved one go through a difficult time, and the restoration process can be one of the most difficult times in any person’s life. By offering a loving environment, by being non-judgmental and by educating yourself, you can help ease the path for someone. If you have questions about restoration process or would like to better understand how the cycle of bad decisions can lead to homelessness, please visit BayAreaRescue.org.