Seeking treatment for addiction is the first empowering step to your new sober lifestyle. While some may assume that there’s no need for addiction and family to go together, the opposite is actually true. Family support is critical to achieving addiction recovery.
Studies show that when both parents participate in their son’s recovery process, it increases his chance of long-term recovery exponentially. But, we also know that sometimes, the best of intentions can go a bit astray. That is why Little Creek Recovery offers a program intended to help families relearn how to work with each other.
The family program at Little Creek Lodge is designed to promote healthy interaction between family members and their sons through education. Family members of Little Creek patients are a significant part of our addiction treatment process. This is because they contribute to our residents’ emotional growth.
To be a part of the Little Creek family program, the family members of recovering alcoholics and drug addicts must be willing to recognize the co-dependencies that they’ve developed as a result of their loved ones’ addiction. Family members of males receiving addiction treatment at Little Creek must also recognize their impact on their loved ones’ addiction recovery.
Ultimately, the Little Creek family can help families with individuals who suffer from addiction function better as units. In doing so, Little Creek is providing assistance to families along each step of the road to addiction recovery.
What is Family Therapy?
Family therapy is a type of psychotherapy (counseling) that is geared towards helping families resolve conflicts, improve communication and build a healthier home life. Family therapy is a recognition that addictive behaviors can involve all members of a household, not just the one suffering from addiction.
Family therapy will help the families of someone struggling with addiction understand the roles they play in enabling poor behavior patterns and the ways they can change to help their loved one overcome addiction. Family therapy requires all members of a family to be bought into the treatment for the good of the addict and the family as a whole.
Family therapy involves group-session counseling that is traditionally led by a licensed mental health counselor, psychologist, or clinical social worker. Family therapy is usually a short-term program that involves as many of the immediate family members as possible (that are willing to participate). Specific treatment plans will vary from family to family, but most will include counseling, conflict mediation, and the building of healthy communication and behavior patterns.
The Little Creek Recovery Family Program
The Little Creek family program is held on the first Sunday of every month at 10:00 a.m. These programs occur at our outpatient program at 518 Easton Turnpike Hamlin, PA 18427. The family program is conducted by Little Creek’s Clinical Team, along with a monthly rotation of guest speakers. Our educational program challenges parents to learn a new way to love.
Family members of our Little Creek patients that attend the family program will also learn about codependency, boundaries, and direct communication. One of the most important things that we teach family members of recovering addicts is how to be on the same page with each other in matters regarding the recovery process.
The second half of the Little Creek family program takes place within Little Creek Lodge, where we hold group therapy sessions with both residents and parents. When the guided interaction between mom, dad, and son reveals true intentions and motives, the unearthing of the family takes place. Then, the forum becomes intimate.
Little Creek residents should become more transparent with each passing month. They should also become more vulnerable (not defensive or secretive) and trusting in the recovery process. Little Creek residents should even be more vulnerable and trusting with dialogue that takes place within the group.
Addiction and Family Therapy
Family attendance strongly is encouraged. We here at Little Creek Lodge believe it is vital for parents to learn the language of recovery and 12-Step philosophies. That way they can effectively communicate with their sons who suffer from addiction. Therefore, all family groups are counselor-guided.
During the Little Creek family program presentations, discussions about the disease of addiction, codependency, and family roles take place. This sparks questions and interactions between parents and counselors. Through such interaction, real awareness unfolds.
Standard Types of Family Therapy
There are four standard addiction and family models. These four models include the cognitive-behavioral therapy model, the multidimensional model, the family systems model, and the family disease model.
Cognitive-Behavioral Therapy Model
The cognitive-behavioral therapy model for addiction and family helps families recognize the negative thoughts, emotions, and behaviors that they exhibit. That way, the members of these families can change their negative thoughts, emotions, and behaviors into positive ones.
The multidimensional model for addiction and family helps families identify the environmental and other contributing stressors that trigger the addiction. Once these environmental and contributing stressors are identified, family members of individuals that are recovering from addiction should make a conscious effort to remove or alter these environmental and contributing stressors.
Family Systems Model
The family systems model for addiction and family identifies issues that can cause a person to relapse. Family members of recovering addicts that are receiving this model of family therapy should make a conscious effort to resolve their issues once they’ve been identified. That way, the recovering addict will be less likely to relapse.
Family Disease Model
The family disease model for addiction and family identifies problems within the family that need to be changed for their loved one to overcome addiction. Thus, whatever results families receive while in the family disease model of therapy, they must immediately address.
Family Roles Within a Family That Suffers from Addiction
There are many roles that family members of individuals that suffer from addiction often take on. These roles include:
The hero is the person in the family that’s always working to bring people in the family together. The hero is also always trying to fix everything and take care of everyone.
On top of that, the hero is usually a perfectionist. This is to make up for the lack of perfection in the addict. The hero is also a perfectionist because it helps make it easier for him or her to fix everything.
Because the hero is often a perfectionist, the hero is always stressed. As a result, the hero often develops anxiety disorders and/or other stress-related illnesses. The hero is often the eldest child within a family.
When it comes to addiction and family, the scapegoat is the person that everyone blames for everything. This is because family members of addicts need someone to cast all their stresses on.
Scapegoats often act out when they get older. This is partly because families have low expectations for the scapegoat. For example, male scapegoats often become violent later on in life while female scapegoats often become promiscuous.
The scapegoat within a family with addiction is usually the second eldest child. This is likely because the scapegoat couldn’t keep up with the perfect ways of his or her heroic older brother or sister.
The Lost Child
The lost child is the child within a family that suffers from an addiction that people often forget about. This is partly due to the lost child usually being quiet and withdrawn.
Because the lost child is shy and withdrawn, he or she usually struggles to form close bonds with others. As a result, the lost child often lives a life of solitude.
The mascot is the person within a family with a person in it that suffers from an addiction that likes to make people laugh by being silly. Because the mascot within a family is always entertaining others, he or she is always seeking the approval of others.
The person in recovery that’s a mascot also uses humor as a mask to hide his or her inner turmoil. As the mascot gets older, he or she often turns to substance abuse to start masking his or her inner turmoil.
Thus, the mascot is the person in the family that often perpetuates the cycle of addiction. The mascot is often the youngest child.
When it comes to addiction and family, the addict is the person that actually suffers from a substance use disorder. Thus, the addict is the person that needs to enter addiction treatment at a rehab facility such as Little Creek Recovery.
Within a family, the addict is the person that brings chaos wherever he or she goes. Due to their strong desire to get more substances, addicts often lie, cheat, and steal. In fact, drug addicts will often put their lives along with the lives of others at risk just to get more substances. They’re not doing it on purpose and family members must remember addiction is a chronic brain disorder.
The best way to overcome addiction is to attend professional detox followed by professional drug rehab. After individuals attend addiction treatment, they should make use of aftercare services and support groups.
With Our Families By Our Side, All Things are Possible
To learn more about Little Creek Lodge’s policies, we encourage you to download the Little Creek Parent Guide Booklet. Here, you will find Little Creek Lodge’s policies regarding communication, visitation, and home visits, as well as drug testing, medication, and payments.
The leaders at Little Creek Lodge are motivated by love. The families of Little Creek Lodge patients are motivated by love as well. It’s because we value addiction and family so much that we incorporate family into our treatment programs.
If you have questions about our family program here at Little Creek Recovery, contact us today! You can also contact us by filling out an online contact form on our website. There is no moment to spare when it comes to repairing broken family bonds! Contact Little Creek Recovery today and start healing from addiction.