It’s a fact that the month January invites us to make resolutions.
But keeping them can be a whole different story.
Studies have shown well-intentioned commitments start to unravel by the second Friday of January.
As family members embroiled in the family-systems disease of addiction, let us not allow our resolve to unravel.
The importance of keeping the resolutions we made for our own self-care and for better ways to manage this crisis is of utmost importance.
The disease of addiction can grind a family to bits like a massive granite millstone in overdrive. The effort to keep commitments protecting our wellbeing and helping our loved ones seek a path of recovery is daunting.
Fatigue – physical, mental and spiritual – coupled with the chaos and shame inherent in the disease makes any meaningful progress forward incredibly difficult.
When our family was in the midst of our son’s late stage addiction crisis more than a decade ago, I looked to the days of January as an opportunity to tackle pressing needs.
But as our son’s life deteriorated, my resolve faltered. Quite honestly, I felt like I was bringing a cup of water to extinguish an inferno.
Thank God our family was not standing alone in that blaze.
We had a deep bench of recovery professionals to help guide us to our family’s solution. To this day, I am deeply grateful for all of them. They stood by us and helped bring about family healing with our son’s choice to lead a recovered life for more than a decade.
These recovery professionals were dedicated to helping our family extricate from the strangling web of addiction. Their training and experience as professionals working at rehabs and post-treatment care uniquely qualified them to give our family the best possible guidance for how to establish and maintain recovery.
Our wonderful team included a family counselor, who specialized in adolescent addiction issues, recovery specialists from the reputable residential treatment center our son went to, the director of that rehab’s Family Program, the rehab’s patient advocates and aftercare specialists, and the recovery professional, who managed the halfway house where our son lived once he completed the 28-day program.
We listened to all their guidance, which was at times challenging. They didn’t sugar coat our situation.
We committed to the work of change. Sometimes that was hard to do. But that’s a necessary part of the process.
It took time – a lot of time. But ultimately, through the Grace of God and these trusted sources of help, our son realized his need to change and began to live a life of recovery. His dedication to helping others in the throes of addiction led him to get education and training to become a recovery professional himself. That is a commitment he now lives out every day.
If your family is struggling, if your resolve is crumbling, please know help is available. The expertise, compassion and dedication of recovery professionals can help guide your family to a place of healing.
Seek out their guidance on your family’s journey to solutions.
They are there for you.
Do you have a deep bench of support from recovery professionals?
What guidance have they given you and your loved ones in the family systems illness of substance use disorder?
Please share here. We can all be inspired by our collective experience, strength and hope.