When you love someone recovering from alcohol or drug addiction, you may feel a huge sense of relief when they agree to go into treatment and get sober. You want to believe that all the bad times are behind you. However, if your loved one ends up relapsing, it can be devastating for you. Relapses are not uncommon. Although relapse doesn’t happen to everyone who gets sober, it does happen to a lot of people. For some, relapse is part of the journey of sobriety. The person in recovery may have to make certain mistakes in order to clearly understand the steps they need to take in order to remain sober long-term.
It may take time to recognize triggers and to honestly admit that the disease of addiction is ongoing and is stronger than the individual. Going through this can be very difficult for families and friends. You may experience a wide range of volatile, negative emotions. However, there are some things you shouldn’t do if your loved one picks up a drink or a drug. Learn what not to do when your loved one relapses and find an addiction treatment program that can help them get back on track. If you have any questions about addiction treatment for a loved one, you can also reach out to Recovery Ranch TN today at 1.844.876.7680.
Don’t Blame Yourself
There’s a good chance the person using substances will try to make you believe that it is your fault that they picked up. They may tell you that the relapse wouldn’t have happened if you didn’t say or do certain things. This is absolutely not true. Those battling drug or alcohol addiction have the urge to drink because they are struggling with a severe mental health condition. It’s that simple. You don’t have the power to make your loved one relapse, and you don’t have the power to make your loved one get sober. Please don’t blame yourself for the addiction, and don’t let them blame you.
Don’t Get Angry
Anger is a common reaction when someone you love relapses, particularly if there has been more than one relapse. You want to get on with your own life, and you are angry that your loved one is continually giving in to their addiction. They may revert to old behaviors like staying out all night or stealing money from you. It’s a complicated situation, but becoming consumed with rage doesn’t do you or your loved one any good.
If you scream and shout or otherwise express your fury with the situation, you’re only making a bad situation worse. When explosive, overpowering emotions take over, you hurt yourself most of all. It may help your loved one if you remain calm and supportive. Instead of expressing anger, encourage your loved one to call their sponsor or go back to treatment. Give them the opportunity to talk to you and express their feelings about what happened.
At the same time, it’s possible your loved one will reject your efforts to be supportive. If that happens, turn your focus on yourself. In Al-Anon, you can learn more about the disease of addiction and how to take care of yourself, control your anger and handle your own reactions.
Don’t Give Up Hope
Although relapse may feel like it’s the end of the world, it isn’t. No matter how hopeless it may seem today, hold on to the belief that things can get better. People do recover from severe forms of addiction, and your loved one can, too. Relapse doesn’t mean your loved one has permanently failed. It only means they may need to try again or seek additional treatment.
The only thing you have control over is your own life and your own reactions. You can learn many of the skills you need for living with addiction by attending Al-Anon meetings. You may also want to consider working with a counselor. No matter where your loved one is in their recovery journey, your most important task is to take care of yourself. Make a commitment to learning how to remain calm and accept whatever happens. Above all, don’t give up hope.
Learn More at Recovery Ranch TN Today
Relapse prevention is one of the core components of our programming at Recovery Ranch TN. We provide a serene, healing environment where men and women can focus on their recovery. Our evidence-based approach includes individualized treatment plans, 12-step support, and therapeutic options, such as:
- Cognitive-behavioral therapy (CBT) – CBT is highly effective in treating addiction and helps our clients understand the thoughts and emotions that trigger substance use.
- Dialectical behavior therapy (DBT) – DBT is a type of CBT that emphasizes mindfulness and acceptance. It helps our clients feel more in control of their emotions and less likely to turn back to substances.
- Motivational interviewing – This approach helps our clients explore their ambivalence about recovery and develop the motivation to change.
- Individual and group therapy – We offer both individual and group therapy options, which help our clients learn more about themselves and connect with others in recovery.
- Family therapy – Family therapy is an important part of the healing process for our clients and their loved ones. It helps repair relationships and build a foundation of support for recovery.
Recovery Ranch TN is here to help you or your loved one on the road to recovery. Contact Recovery Ranch TN today at 1.844.876.7680 to learn more about what not to do when your loved one relapses.