Many people in treatment for substance use disorder (SUD) have loved ones who actively abuse substances. Remaining in contact with someone who actively abuses substances may endanger your treatment progress. According to the Substance Abuse and Mental Health Services Administration (SAMHSA), “[R]esearch shows that family support can play a major role in helping a loved one with mental and substance use disorders.” Newport Beach Recovery Center encourages clients to connect with their families if it does not endanger their recovery and sobriety. Our dedicated mental health professionals can help you determine how to support your loved one without risking your safety. 

Family Members With Substance Use Disorder

Sometimes family can try to interfere with an individual’s recovery. If a family member pressures you in any way, it can affect your mental health. The dedicated mental health professionals at Newport Beach Recovery Center can help you establish and maintain boundaries with family members. We prioritize the health of all our clients and do everything possible to protect them from toxic outside influences. 

SUD is often multigenerational, and you may have multiple family members who struggle with the condition. According to Progress in Biophysics and Molecular Biology, “Familial inheritance of drug abuse is composed of both genetic and environmental factors.” In some cases, a genetic predisposition may be activated by external triggers. Environmental factors that can increase a person’s risk of developing SUD include:

  • Trauma 
  • Chronic stress 
  • Toxic family dynamics 

Your relationship with the person misusing substances will play a role in determining how best to respond. A spouse, parent, child, or sibling struggling with active SUD might leave you feeling overwhelmed. If you rely on them financially or live with them, it can add another layer of complication. Individuals in outpatient, intensive outpatient (IOP), or partial hospitalization (PHP) programs, should avoid contact with individuals who may endanger their sobriety. Newport Beach Recovery Center offers a wide range of services and levels of care, including sober living housing if you need a safe, sober space to establish new routines. 

Should You Cut off Communication During Substance Use Disorder Treatment? 

Many people in treatment do not feel comfortable communicating with loved ones who still actively abuse substances. In some cases, it is unsafe to maintain those connections until you feel more comfortable in your recovery. However, family therapy might help your loved one come to terms with the realities of addiction and give them the motivation to get help. Our team will collaborate with you to determine if you should maintain communication with your loved one during treatment and early recovery. 

How to Support a Loved One Without Endangering Your Sobriety

The most important thing to consider is how your loved one’s substance abuse might affect your recovery. You can talk with your therapist and care team to figure out how to address the issue if you want to support them without putting yourself in harm’s way. 

A few ways you can help your loved one without directly interacting during treatment include: 

  • Sending one-way messages of support through mail, by phone, or online 
  • Providing information about recovery resources through a third party 
  • Regularly updating them on your status to showcase the benefits of treatment 

What method you use will depend on your relationship and current mental health status. Our mental health professionals have years of experience helping clients and their families navigate recovery. 

You Cannot Force Your Loved One to Change 

No matter how much you want to help them, you cannot force your loved one to get help or change. However, you can encourage them and become a role model, showing the benefits of rehabilitation. If you and your care team believe maintaining contact during treatment will benefit your mental health, you can participate in family therapy or reach out in a removed way. Individuals struggling with substance abuse often need outside motivation to make positive changes. 

Your friend or family member might not feel comfortable with the idea of treatment, and it can take time to reach them. Some signs that your loved one might not be ready to get help yet include: 

  • Denial of addictive behaviors
  • Lack of self-awareness about their health issues 
  • Angry or violent outbursts when confronted with the reality of their condition 

Even if they are ready to make a change, sometimes people do not have easy access to resources. You can work with your case manager to provide your loved one with essential information about recovery support services in their area. The emotional support you provide might inspire them to make positive changes. You do not have to face this challenge alone. The dedicated team at Newport Beach Recovery Center is here to help you, and your loved one find a healthy path forward. 

Watching someone you care about struggle with substance abuse can trigger cravings and leave you feeling helpless. You can take actions to limit the risk to yourself while supporting your loved one. At Newport Beach Recovery Center, we can help you determine if interacting with your loved one will affect your health and recovery. If you feel comfortable contacting them, you can encourage your loved one to get professional support. In addition, seeing you improve during treatment may inspire them to reach out on their own. Newport Beach Recovery Center provides family support services and family therapy to help you remain connected with your loved ones during treatment. To learn more, call us today at (888) 850-0363.