When it comes to substance use disorder, those who are addicted aren’t the only ones suffering. Those who are suffering from substance abuse most often have families and loved ones that are being affected as well. Addiction has a sort of splatter effect; when it strikes, everyone in close proximity is vulnerable to the stain substance abuse leaves. Luckily, there are treatment options even for family and loved ones at Unity Behavioral Health.
What is Family Therapy?
Family therapy is a method of therapy in which there is some overlap between the structure of a group therapy session and an individual therapy session. Some intimacy exists in the reverence of the individual for whom all have gathered; the sessions are private, without the presence of other addicted individuals who have no relation to an addicted person (unlike group therapy). The reason it overlaps with group therapy is that the structure allows each individual to take turns speaking while the therapist mediates.
Those who are addicted to substances aren’t the only ones who are suffering. The families and loved ones of those suffering are experiencing the ripple effects of addiction; they also need to be taken care of. Not only that, but even if the family isn’t necessarily suffering in the way that the addicted individual is, the addicted person still may need to repair any sort of broken relationship in the family.
Other Kinds of Therapy
Family therapy isn’t the only kind of therapy in addiction treatment. Some other types of therapy are listed below:
- Individual Therapy
- Group Therapy
- Cognitive-Behavioral Therapy
Individual therapy is a method of care in which those who participate do so in a more private environment. This allows individuals to feel more comfortable sharing the more intimate details of their lives because they aren’t having to do so in a group setting. These environments are imperative for those who long to bring their baggage to a place where they can dump it onto someone who is not involved in their personal lives or trying to fix them.
Group therapy is a method of care that allows individuals to share their grief with others in a setting that is less intimate. The way these sessions work is rather Socratic in the method. Chairs are typically set up in a circle and individuals take turns sharing what is on their hearts. This allows individuals to feel comfortable and empowered by others in order to move past their addiction. This is good because when others feel as though they are united by a common enemy, success becomes more likely to be achieved.
Cognitive-Behavioral Therapy (CBT) aims to take a more analytical approach to therapy. The goal is ultimately to examine why a person behaves the way that they do. The way that individuals view the world around them strongly impacts the way that they interact with it.
The Signs and Severity of Addiction
There are many signs that someone you love could be addicted, some of which include the following:
- Using more of a substance than someone wanted to
- Not being able to say no to a substance
- Consistently being inebriated
- Spending large amounts of money on substances
- Increased tolerance
- Consistent lack of judgment
There are many physical symptoms someone can recognize in order to point out whether or not another is suffering from substance abuse. However, as imperative as it is to recognize physical symptoms, it is equally as important to be cognizant of the impact substance abuse has on one’s mental state. When substances are used, the chemical signals in the brain change and are distorted.
Over time, when someone keeps abusing a substance, they will feel a compulsion to come back to the substance. These cravings are often insatiable and in most cases impossible to overcome.
When it comes to knowing whether or not someone is suffering from a mild form of addiction, it is helpful to look for some of these symptoms. Those who suffer from mild addiction will display anywhere from two to three of these symptoms while those who suffer from moderate to severe addiction could develop five or six of these symptoms.
The Impact of Addiction on Families and Loved Ones
Addiction is not an easy road to travel. It could have a detrimental impact not only on the individual but their family and loved ones as well. This is because disorders such as substance use disorder tend to have a splatter effect on anybody within two feet of an individual (metaphorically speaking). This doesn’t just have to do with finances or being sad for a family member; it’s much more than that.
When someone suffers from addiction there’s an emotional weight that is carried not just by addicted individuals, but their family members and loved ones. It is very much possible for a family member to develop a mental health disorder such as anxiety or depression as a result.
For those who have a family member or loved one suffering from addiction, it is perfectly normal to feel isolated, helpless, uncertain, worried, or even threatened as a result of that person’s addictive behavior.
Problems such as addiction don’t just go away overnight, and for those in the middle of it all, it is tortuous. All anybody ever wants for their loved ones is the best, and when they are suffering from something like addiction, it can be disheartening. Not only that, but more times than not those who are addicted to substances need to be taken care of by others because they cannot take care of themselves.
As a result, they are left caring for those individuals as well as themselves. This becomes exhausting after a while and exhaustion can have a detrimental impact on one’s mental well-being. This is why it is so important that those who have family members who suffer from addiction are able to seek help.
Treatment is not just for individuals who suffer from substance use disorder directly. There are family members and loved ones who may need help processing their grief. In these circumstances, family therapy is the best helper.
Is Family Therapy Right for Me?
When it comes to recovery, there is no cookie-cutter treatment method; there’s no practice or timeline that works for every single person. People come from different cultures, ethnic groups, and environments. This all makes for different histories and experiences throughout their lives, which has a rather large impact on how someone should be treated.
Whether or not family therapy is right for you is a matter of whether or not it’ll improve your specific circumstances. If you come from a broken family or your addiction or mental illness has impacted their lives in a great way, family therapy may be right for you.
On the flip side of the same token, within the context of your addiction, family therapy may not even be necessary. Either that or you may require individual therapy due to the more personal environment. Sometimes people don’t do well in that regard and are more successful in group settings. This is all dependant on the individual; in other words, individual uniqueness requires individualized care.
What Are My Next Steps?
You may be wondering what your next steps should be in terms of finding the right treatment. It’s difficult to find the correct fit whenever you’re so unsure of what your next steps should be. There is so much information that it can be vastly overwhelming. What may help is getting in touch with us.
We have a plethora of individuals willing and able to help you sort out the initial steps of your recovery journey. It has been said that every 1,000-mile journey begins with the first step. At Unity, you don’t have to take that first step alone.
Get In Touch with Unity Today
Those who are addicted or are suffering from a mental health disorder don’t suffer alone. There are individuals who love them who are also impacted by the weight of addiction and poor mental health. This journey is not one anybody walks alone. It may feel isolating at times, but there are others with you who see you and are willing to affirm you. This is one of the most important steps of the recovery process.
Taking your first step is difficult, but you don’t have to do it alone. At Unity Behavioral Health, we are here to walk beside you and strengthen you in every way we can; it takes a vast amount of belief in you to do so.
When patients make their way into our facility, we are sure to meet them where they are and learn about them to make their recovery as successful as possible. Individualized care is at the forefront of what we do at Unity, and it’s because we want to be 100 percent certain that those who need help are not just getting help, but that they’re getting the best care available.
If you or a loved one are suffering and want to find out more about family therapy, or even take the first step, you can contact us here.