Sending a family member off to rehab is a serious decision and everyone in the family should be aware and understanding of the situation. Here are some ways to help your family prepare for the rehab process.
Photo by Saku Takakusaki
Everyone in the family should do their best to be supportive to the one in rehab, as well as to each other. You’re all going through the same experience, so lean on one another. The stronger you are as a family unit, the stronger you can be for the family member in rehab.
If you have other children, explain to them why their sibling is going to rehab, what they will do there and what will happen when they come back home. Be mindful of how you explain the situation to younger kids, as they may have a harder time with understanding what is happening, but don’t leave them in the dark.
There are several support hotlines across the country that families can call if they need support, advice or counselling. Most hotlines run 24/7 and are toll free. Some popular hotlines include The National Parent Hotline, the Substance Abuse and Mental Health Services National Hotline and the Drug Free Hotline.
There are many family therapy and counselling services available for families with a loved one in rehab. Counselling, whether done as a family or individually, is a great way to talk about anxieties and solve problems with a confidential third party person, such as a counsellor or therapist. Check if your community offers free or group counselling programs, or if there is a support system through the rehab program for families.