The relationship between a parent and child is one unlike any other. Parents often carry a role of leadership, prioritizing the health and safety of their children above all else. Even once great parents are susceptible to addiction. When you are faced with the task of finding help for a parent addicted to drugs or alcohol, you are taking action as a caregiver. This role reversal can be challenging at times, but it’s a necessary step to help your parent regain control of their life.
Support Your Parent, Not The Addiction
Offering love and support may be difficult when you’re feeling conflicted, but it’s important to remember that the parent you know is still in there, and can be recovered with help. Some ways to support a parent without enabling addictive behavior include:
- Refusing to retrieve addictive substances, such as prescription pills or alcoholic beverages.
- If your parent is intoxicated, it’s important to find a non-combative method to prevent him or her from getting behind the wheel of a vehicle. Offer to drive, or call a cab.
- Do not join in on substance abuse with your parent.
- Offer a judge-free ear to listen, but never promise to keep addiction a secret.
- Keep the lines of communication open.
- Keep an eye out for signs of hopelessness, self-injury, or overdose.
Confronting your mom or dad outright, and demanding rehabilitation may cause some unneeded conflict. This route could hinder a thought-out intervention. If you or your parent have supportive friends or family members who could provide some insight, it could be beneficial to reach out for help with research and approach.
How To Intervene Effectively
When addicted to drugs or alcohol, it may be next to impossible to fully recover without the help of a rehab. Unfortunately, not many people will make the choice to go on their own. The thought of confronting your parent with mutual loved ones can feel like a huge undertaking, but it is very necessary if your parent is reluctant to get help. Key elements of an intervention include:
- In this case, your parent.
- Close friends and family members.
- A mediator – This person is well-versed in intervention processes, and is usually employed by the rehab facility. This person keeps everyone on the same page, and helps to answer questions about the recovery process on-site.
- A suitable rehab to offer as a solution.
- A letter to the person for whom the intervention is held, usually describing how addiction is affecting you. The letter may also cover ultimatums, which will be incentive to get help.
Research is the most important factor in an effective intervention. Offering a solution in a vulnerable situation can be the push needed to get your parent on the road to recovery. Choosing valuable people to provide a supportive network can help your loved one find the strength needed to change.
Support After Treatment
Once treatment through rehab is finished, your parent will require a lot of follow-up to ensure that his or her recovery is on the right track. This could include meetings, therapy, outpatient rehab, a sober living home, and physician-aided treatment. There are many ways to assist your mom or dad with these tasks. Some ideas to help aid your parent in lasting sobriety include:
- Encouragement for accomplishments. Little steps toward a healthier lifestyle are all reasons to celebrate.
- Offer to tag along for a meeting.
- Make yourself present. Check in often, even if it’s a quick call to say hello.
- Become a contact in case a situation raises temptation for relapse. Remember that relapse is not an inevitability, but a possibility. Develop a course of action for possible relapse with your parent.
- Stay positive. Refrain from pointing fingers and unnecessary conflict.
- Show gratitude for efforts.
Taking on a supporting role for a loved one can be very rewarding. Strengthening bonds can do a great deal of good for families dealing with addiction. These bonds are especially important between parents and their children.
A parent’s addiction to drugs or alcohol can be especially troubling. You may feel an obligation to protect your parent, while still feeling resentment for their actions. If you have a parent who is struggling with a drug or alcohol addiction, you may wonder if there is something you can do to help. Fortunately, there are many resources available to help your family move forward, and find relief from drug or alcohol addiction.
We Can Help
Addiction negatively impacts the lives of millions of people every day. If you need help finding relief for a parent addicted to drugs or alcohol, the caring staff at DrugRehab.org is here to help. We can connect you with rehab centers, provide conversation guidance, and offer more ways to help your parent regain control of his or her addiction. Contact us today.