With high numbers of recovering addicts, it’s easy to understand why questions about how to help a recovering addict are so common.
The National Center for Drug Abuse Statistics estimates that over 37 million Americans aged 12 years and older have used illegal drugs in the last 30 days, and approximately 25% of those have a substance use disorder.1
In addition, approximately 20% of the 138,522 Americans aged 12 and over who drink alcohol have an alcohol use disorder.1 Substance and alcohol use disorders don’t only affect the people who are addicted; they also affect family and friends who may not know how to offer the right kinds of emotional support to a loved one who has completed a treatment program.
Preparing for a Loved One’s Return from Drug Rehab in Costa Mesa
Recovery is all about change. People in addiction recovery must change their habits, hobbies, attitudes, and sometimes even their friends to remain sober. All these changes are both invigorating and unsettling.
Most treatment programs do an excellent job of preparing the patient for all of these changes, but family members don’t always get the information they need to help make the transition back home smooth for everyone involved.
The first thing loved ones must remember as they prepare their home for a recovering addict is not to take anything personally. Of course, this is easier said than done, especially if a person’s words or actions were hurtful while they were under the influence of a substance.
Addiction may cause a household’s members to experience:
- Financial problems
- Chaos, instability, and inconsistency
- Physical danger
- A lack of emotional and physical security
Ideally, parents, children, partners, and close friends have participated in family therapy, individual therapy, and peer-led support groups. This kind of involvement provides family and friends with the skills they need to maintain healthy boundaries and receive the support they need to heal from the ripple effects of addiction. If not, it is never too late to begin.
5 Ways to Prepare Your Home for a Recovering Addict
If your loved one is returning home from drug rehab in Costa Mesa, there are several things you can do to help them feel welcome and comfortable in their addiction recovery journey.
1. Clean the House Before the Recovering Addict Returns
This may sound simple, but remember that your family member has been living in dorm-style housing with few personal possessions for the last several weeks. Too many visual stimuli could feel overwhelming. A recovery-friendly environment is clean, neat, and peaceful.
Where it is practical, affordable, and emotionally healthy, providing a neat and welcoming environment will help reassure them that you are glad to have them back home.
2. Participate in the Recovery Experience
If your family member wants you to attend 12-Step meetings or family therapy with them, it means they are trying to reconnect with you in a healthy, positive way. You may or may not feel the need to seek therapy for yourself, but attending recovery-based family events — both social and therapeutic — will help strengthen your relationship and let them know you are serious about supporting their recovery.
3. Provide a Personal Space for Them
One of the things people learn in recovery is how important it is to take care of their mental, emotional, and physical health. It is a priority to have a private space to meditate, exercise, write in their journal, and speak on the phone with their sponsor or other recovery support specialists.
This doesn’t mean you are responsible for making sure those things happen. But providing them with private space is an impactful way to offer your emotional support.
4. Respect Their Schedule
When your loved one returns from drug rehab in Costa Mesa, don’t be surprised to learn they’ve incorporated many healthy new habits into their lifestyle. Especially in the first stages of treatment, a recovering addict learns to rely on a strict schedule to help them get through the day without substances. The person who used to stay up all night and eat junk food for dinner may now require a 10 p.m. bedtime and three square meals a day.
Family members should not be expected to follow the same regimen. However, they also shouldn’t work to convince their loved one to stay up late “just this once” or do other things that are not in keeping with their daily routine. Self-care is vital in avoiding the triggers that could lead to relapse, and each recovering addict must practice self-care routines carefully.
5. Get Rid of Drugs and Alcohol in the Home
Drugs and alcohol are everywhere, and a recovering addict has to learn to deal with temptation. Keep substances or paraphernalia out of the home. Keeping these items in your home when a loved one returns from an addiction recovery program does not show support.
If someone in the home uses prescription medications that could be abused, discreetly store them out of sight. Removing these triggers will help create a space where your loved one feels safe and supported.
Does Someone You Know Need Drug Rehab in Costa Mesa?
Have any questions? Or do you know someone who needs treatment for substance use disorder, Clear Life Recovery is here to help. Call us today for more information about all of our treatment programs.