A Substance Use Disorder is Never a ‘Just You’ Problem

It can be easy to think of substance use disorders as an individual problem—especially if you are the individual in question. When you are struggling with drugs or alcohol, it can feel like you are all alone and that any consequences of your substance use only impact you.

But, of course, that is far from the truth. A person’s substance use disorder impacts a whole range of people. Most notably, the people in the person’s family are likely to face a whole range of challenges—challenges they simply do not know how to handle effectively.

The good news is that just like there is help available for a person who wants to regain their sobriety, there is also help available for entire families. At The Aviary Recovery Center, that help is known as our Family Wellness Program.

Addressing a Range of Issues Families May Face

When a member of the family has developed a substance use disorder, all sorts of problems can arise. Communication may break down between family members—perhaps because feelings of anger, sadness, and more are in play. Members of the family may desperately want to help but not know how to do so without enabling the behavior that is causing all the problems. Finances may be in disarray, self-care may fall by the wayside, and it may seem as though the entirety of life has fallen down a hole of stress and grief

Getting some expert help and guidance can make a huge difference. Our Family Wellness Program provides educational and social support for families for whom a substance use disorder has upended almost everything. The program helps families with difficult issues they may be navigating while also providing information about how best to support their loved ones.

Importantly, the Family Wellness Program also provides essential information about the nature of substance use disorders so that each member of the family has the same, correct understanding of this treatable—but not curable—brain disease.

Topics considered in the program include:

  • Understanding substance use disorders as a brain disease rather than a character issue
  • Understanding the ways in which a substance use disorder impacts a person’s brain, their life, and the lives of those around them
  • Understanding a collection of issues related to family life, including:
    • The intertwined nature of family dynamics
    • How to maintain healthy, useful boundaries
    • Employing safe and successful communication strategies
    • Techniques for conflict resolution and prioritization
  • Understanding ways to meet your own needs when a loved one is struggling with a substance use disorder:
    • Ways to practice self-care
    • Developing and employing coping skills
    • Successfully managing challenging transitions
  • Developing skills for the period after your loved one’s treatment:
    • Planning next steps after treatment
    • Helping your loved one prepare to return home and to work
    • Learning to effectively handle the ways in which your loved one might be perceived after treatment

Bringing Our Expertise to the Table

The Family Wellness Program at The Aviary Recovery Center is led by mental health and substance use disorder professionals. Each approaches the program with a combination of expertise and empathy—and with the goal to help family members develop and embrace an environment of recovery. Family members have the opportunity to try new skills, get feedback, and make adjustments that will better serve them individually and collectively. The program works to help families create an understanding environment that is built around cohesion and that reduces symptoms of depression, feelings of anger, and more that can undermine efforts to move forward together. 

We Can Help You Overcome a Substance Use Disorder

We mentioned at the top of this entry that a person struggling with a substance use disorder can feel as if they are all alone and that no one can help them overcome their dependence on drugs or alcohol. 

But that is not the case. The Aviary Recovery Center—located near St. Louis, Missouri—offers personalized treatment for substance use disorder and co-occurring mental health disorders. We will see you through medically supervised detoxification so that you can reclaim your society in a safe environment that is free of temptations. 

We follow that up with a rehabilitation program that includes group and individual therapy as you develop skills and strategies for maintaining your hard-won sobriety. And because we want you to start your recovery journey with confidence, we provide a continuum of care to ensure that you have access to the resources and support you need.

Meanwhile, our Family Wellness Program is offered as a free service to the St. Louis area community every Wednesday from 6:00 pm to 7:30 pm in our Kirkwood office. For more information, contact us today