Nearly everyone who has a substance use disorder also has a family that has stood beside them. This family has likely encouraged their loved ones to stop using the addictive substance and/or to seek outside help. Like most families, yours likely provides both a source of support and stress. A family therapy program in Los Angeles is an important component of recovery.
What is a Family Therapy Program?
A family therapy program in Los Angeles brings you and members of your immediate family together. This can include your parents, siblings and their significant others, if appropriate, and other close relatives or guardians.
Additionally, extended family members like:
- Aunts and uncles might also participate, depending on your relationship with them.
Because you are a result of the environment in which you grew up, your family played an important role in your development. This includes all aspects of:
You are impacted by those family members who were instrumental in your upbringing and their actions impacted you in a myriad of ways. A grandparent’s illness, for example, can affect your life as well as the lives of those who are caring for both you and your loved one.
What is Codependency?
Codependency is a term used to describe family dynamics in which family members are overly invested in each other’s lives and behaviors. This pattern of behavior can often lead family members to neglect their own needs and well-being, becoming overly dependent on the thoughts and actions of others.
While codependency is most commonly associated with family relationships involving someone struggling with addiction or mental illness, it can also occur in other relationships where one person is highly dependent on the other for emotional support and stability.
Many different family therapy approaches can be helpful for addressing issues related to codependency, including family systems therapy, behavioral family therapy, and multidimensional family therapy.
These approaches seek to help family members understand the underlying causes of the addiction and learn new ways of interacting with each other that can promote healing and recovery.
If you are struggling with addiction, or if you have a family member who is struggling with addiction, family therapy can be a valuable resource for addressing the issue and promoting healing.
Why is the Family Unit Important in Substance Abuse Recovery?
The family unit is important in substance abuse recovery because family members can provide a strong support system and help to promote healthy behaviors. Family therapy can help family members understand the underlying causes of addiction, such as:
- Family dynamics
- Other factors that may contribute to substance abuse
Additionally, family therapy can teach family members new ways of interacting with one another that can foster healing and recovery.
How Do the Roles Change in the Family During Substance Abuse?
The roles of the family change during substance abuse in several ways. First, family members often take on different responsibilities as the substance use progresses, with some family members becoming more focused on taking care of their loved one’s physical and emotional needs, while others may focus more on supporting them financially or helping them navigate legal or social challenges.
Additionally, family dynamics can become strained as family members struggle to communicate effectively with each other or respond to behaviors that are detrimental to both the family member suffering from addiction and their loved ones.
While there is no “one-size-fits-all” approach to family therapy for addiction, there are many effective strategies that have been shown to help families manage these challenges and promote healing and long-term recovery.
Some examples include family systems therapy and family strategic therapy, both of which aim to help family members better understand the impact of addiction on family dynamics and develop new ways of communicating with one another.
At its core, family therapy for addiction seeks to address the complex interplay between family relationships, family systems, and addictive behaviors. Whether you’re dealing with substance abuse or behavioral addictions such as gambling or sex addiction, family therapy can be an essential component in promoting long-term recovery and helping family members cope with the challenges that arise from having a loved one struggling with addiction.
What If My Parent is In Addiction Recovery?
If your parents are in addiction recovery, family therapy can help you understand and cope with the challenges that come with having a parent in recovery. Children of parents in addiction recovery may struggle with feelings of shame, guilt, and anger.
Family therapy can help you work through these emotions and develop a healthy relationship with your parents. Family therapy can also help you understand addiction and how it affects families. This knowledge can help you prevent addiction in your own life.
If you are struggling with addiction, family therapy can help you recover by providing support and understanding from your family members. Family therapy can also help your family members understand addiction and how they can best support you in recovery.
How to Explain Addiction to Children
To explain addiction to children, family therapists often use the family disease model. This model explains that addiction is a disease that affects the whole family, not just the person struggling with addiction. The family disease model can help children understand that addiction is not a choice and that it is not their fault.
It is important to remember that family therapy is not a cure for addiction. But, family therapy can help you and your family members better understand addiction and how to best support each other through recovery.
What are the Different Types of Family Therapy?
The different types of family therapy that are commonly used to treat addiction include family education, family communication training, family psychoeducational help, and family-based recovery support. These therapies can help family members understand how addiction affects the brain and the overall functioning of the family. They can also provide tools and strategies for improving family communication and rebuilding trust.
If you or a loved one is struggling with addiction, it may be beneficial to consider family therapy as part of your treatment plan. Working with a qualified family therapist can help you better understand how addiction affects your whole family, as well as provide effective tools and strategies for overcoming challenges in recovery.
Family education is a key component of family therapy for addiction, as it can help family members learn more about the disease and its effects. In family education sessions, therapists will typically provide information about:
– The causes and symptoms of addiction
– How to identify early warning signs
– How to best support a loved one in recovery
Family education can also help family members learn more about their role in the addiction and recovery process, which can be beneficial for both parties.
In addition to family education, group therapy is another common element of family therapy for addiction. Group therapy provides a space for families to openly share their experiences and feelings related to addiction and recovery. It can also be helpful for family members to hear from other families who are dealing with similar experiences.
Family communication training is another important aspect of family therapy for addiction. This type of training can help family members learn effective ways to communicate with each other, which may help improve family dynamics and relationships.
Other common elements of family therapy for addiction include group therapy and family communication training. Through these various therapies and interventions, family members can work together as a unit to support their loved one’s recovery journey.
Family psychoeducational help is when family members are educated on the process of addiction and the effects it has on family dynamics. This type of family therapy is typically used to help family members cope with their loved one’s addiction, as well as manage their own emotions and behaviors.
Some common elements of family psychoeducational family therapy include counseling sessions, support groups, and educational workshops. These interventions can help family members develop better communication skills, as well as learn effective ways to support their loved one’s recovery journey.
Family-based recovery support is a form of family therapy that is specifically geared toward helping families develop skills and knowledge to support their loved one’s recovery from addiction.
This type of therapy typically includes education on the disease of addiction, as well as skill-building workshops on topics such as:
- Conflict resolution
- Boundary setting
Family-based recovery support can be an incredibly valuable resource for families struggling with addiction, as it can help them develop the tools they need to create a healthy and supportive environment for their loved one’s recovery.
What Can a Family Therapy Program Accomplish?
Working with a trained professional ineffective family therapy can provide many services. For example, they can assist you and your family in addressing and resolving a specific issue.
They can also address the role that your family plays in your life while improving those strengths and alleviating any weaknesses. An important way that family therapy assists a person who has a substance use disorder is to help move you and your family through your recovery and become stronger.
Westwind has developed a comprehensive Family Program. With professional Family Therapy and Couples Therapy, Westwind Recovery® can:
- Help family members learn and practice more effective communication tools.
- Help parents take a proactive role in a parent-child relationship.
- Help family members work toward healing and reconciliation for past wrongs.
- Help each family member recognize their needs and the validity of those needs.
- Help an addict or alcoholic recognize social, economic, medical, or psychiatric threats to continuing recovery and, with the help of family members, develop strategies to deal with those threats.
- Help develop long-distance therapeutic relationships utilizing existing technologies like Facetime, Skype, etc.
We offer these services, first as a stop-gap to ongoing harm, and then as a more permanent solution, bringing health and serenity to the damaged family unit.
Benefits of Family Therapy
In many cases, a family therapy program is used to immediately address any crisis that brought you to seek professional assistance with a substance use disorder as a stop-gap measure. Over time, however, family therapy transforms into a valuable tool that’s used to work on the ongoing family dynamics and how they could affect your recovery. Other benefits include:
- Gaining a better understanding of how your family works
- Learn how you fit into your family and your role within it
- Identify ways and methods to make the entire family stronger and more resilient
- Discover both the weaknesses and strengths that exist within every family
- Develop and improve communication skills
- Identify challenges, set goals, and develop strategies for reaching those goals
How Important is Family Therapy to Recovery?
It’s likely that even if you are entering treatment for a substance abuse disorder, you still have family dynamics at work in your life. Perhaps you now have a family of your own and the issues from your family of origin are affecting your own family.
Maybe you need the support of your family as you recover. However, you need to address other issues along the way. When choosing a substance use treatment program, look for one that has the following in addition to a family therapy program:
- Variety of placement options including detox, outpatient, and residential
- Adept at addressing dual diagnosis and mental health issues
- Pet-friendly so you have the support of your favorite furry friends
- Adventure therapy is oriented so you have fun during recovery
Westwind Recovery® is ready to support you during your recovery from a substance use disorder. We have a range of treatment options and methods that can assist you every step of the way. Contact us today to learn more.