The Role of Parents in The Course of Their Child’s Addiction, Treatment and Well-Being

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The stigma that surrounds the issue of addiction these days causes many problems within the family unit, specifically parents who are dealing with kids who are addicted to drugs, alcohol or both. Some parents use punishment to deal with behavior they consider “immoral” while others simply refuse to deal with it all together. Coming down hard on a son or daughter who is an addict may not be the best course of action, and avoiding the problem is just as destructive down the line, but the truth is parents may believe they are dealing with the problem appropriately in order to eventually help their loved one kick the habit and return to being that good son or daughter the parents once knew. To attain wellness, sobriety or even the most basic and important goal: Understanding the problem, parents need to attack the issue in such a way that does not provoke their child to continue with such risky behavior and through motivation, deter them from the path they are on. Instead of throwing a kid out of the house, which will most likely lead to animosity towards you as a parent, perhaps it would be safer to set a strict list of rules that the child should follow. Rules that will help prevent that loved one from staying out all night and getting into trouble from drunk driving or other behavior that could very easily land them in hot water with authority and the law. Taking away things that the child enjoys or thinks they need like a computer or cell phone may indicate to that child that their behavior is unacceptable and that a change needs to be made in their life in order for them to earn back the luxuries they have come to expect but also cherish.

Sometimes, however, simply rules and their subsequent enforcement may not be enough, especially if the child has a serious addiction to a particular substance versus a rebellious phase that they may be going through as a teenager or young adults. Such a phase would be characterized by a child staying out all night every now and then and perhaps accepting the odd hit off a joint or perhaps swallow a pill of MDMA or even a prescription medication. When it comes to a more serious situation, where a child cannot go without their substance of choice, the family must become more involved in the process of getting their child or children well. The road to wellness is often paved with difficulty, struggle and hopefully, motivation from the standpoint of the family who want nothing more than to have their child attain sobriety and break their habit. It’s a tough road, and it requires families to understand as well as they can the severity of the disease we know as addiction. It requires time, effort, patience and more than anything else the faith needed to help a child get through what could very well be the most harrowing period in their lifetime.

Sometimes motivating is not enough. Sometimes parents will fail to get their kids off drugs and alcohol and that is why treatment facilities, managed by trusted and trained professionals exist. If it comes to seeking such treatment, it doesn’t mean you’ve failed your child or yourself. It means that the disease has a stronger hold on your loved one than you previously thought or understood. Treatment facilities exist in order to save lives in more ways than you may think, and just because your child needs professional help does not mean your role as a motivator has ended. When the treatment is over and your child returns to you, you become a stone in their life and their recovery, and that could very well mean your role as parent and guardian will continue to be as involved as it was when you brought that child into the world. You may end up as a motivational speaker, counselor and coach to your child, but that is a small price to pay for their health and well-being.

The Role of Parents in The Course of Their Child’s Addiction, Treatment and Well-Being