How To Get A Loved One Into Rehab
When the signs and symptoms of a substance use disorder appear in a loved one, it’s challenging to absorb reality and figure out what to do next. The situation is emotional, stressful, and, in most cases, the unknown. However, techniques can address the problem and get a loved one into rehab, where recovery can begin. Being supportive without enabling the habit to continue can help someone decide to seek help.
Signs A Loved One Needs Rehab
Identifying an addiction is the first step of recovery. The Substance Abuse and Mental Health Services Administration’s (SAMHSA) National Survey on Drug Use and Health claims in 2020, 40.3 million people in the US over 12 had a substance use disorder. That number includes 28.3 million with alcohol use disorder, 18.4 million with an illicit drug use disorder, and 6.5 million with a polydrug use disorder. Addiction is an illness that can happen to anyone, including family and close friends.
Loved ones struggling with a substance use disorder may be unaware of their addiction or in denial. Many become addicted through prescription misuse or one-time recreational use. Others may use a substance to cope with high stress, mental health conditions, or other lifestyle dysfunctions. Addiction can occur so quickly that addressing the challenge of getting a loved one into rehab can happen within a short time.
Common signs and symptoms of a substance use disorder are any of the following:
- An inability to maintain lifestyle responsibilities at school, work, or home
- Refusal to attend significant social activities
- Ignoring the importance of close relationships
- Taking prescription medication beyond the time frame
- Driving impaired and risky behaviors
- Cravings and urges for a substance
- An inability to stop using the substance
- Moodiness or change in personality
Holding an Intervention
Getting a loved one into rehab may involve setting up an intervention when other methods fail. The Associate of Intervention Specialists claim that the success rate for interventions is between 80-90%. Family and friends set up interventions, sometimes with the help of a third-party professional, in a safe, non-threatening environment to confront the loved one with a substance use disorder. Each participant points out in a non-threatening, non-judgmental manner how their loved one’s behavior associated with substance abuse affects their relationship.
An intervention’s goal is to motivate the opportunity for treatment. Of course, those who have set up the intervention must do the legwork to find a treatment center with professional detox programs and be ready for the loved one to accept help. Professionals assist when help is needed for mediation to occur should conflicts arise. If the loved one agrees to go to treatment, they leave immediately from the intervention.
Address the Issue with Compassion
Compassion can be a powerful gift. Offering it to a loved one struggling with addiction means I join in your suffering. Showing compassion when trying to get a loved one into rehab provides validation and recognition of the suffering connected to addiction. Compassion involves an expression of caring and respect and a willingness to comfort, support, and participate in the recovery process.
Listening to the needs and wants of someone with a substance use disorder without judgment and responding with kindness is the most compassionate form of support one can offer. Compassion is such a strong force that it positively impacts the body and mind. In cases of substance abuse, compassion is an effective counteraction to shame. Genuine kindness and understanding can be the building blocks for trusting relationships in a sober future. Take the time to listen and validate what is said.
Set Boundaries and Remain Firm
Boundaries allow the support system to remain strong while protecting the individual with a substance use disorder by not enabling the addiction. Setting up rules allows the support system to continue to help their loved one by eliminating behaviors that may have unknowingly supported substance use. Clear directions and consistent consequences set the foundation for accountability from the individual with the SUD. Boundaries provide safety for the support team as well.
Getting a loved one into rehab can be challenging, but recognizing their efforts, commenting on their strengths, and being there to listen or just sit lends positive support. Asking open-ended questions prompts someone to contribute more than a yes or no answer. Allowing for time to be curious about their thoughts and repeating responses to prove attentiveness are examples of positive and healthy support. Finally, the importance of genuine caring tones with positive encouragement is priceless.
Examples of open-ended questions include:
- What are the good things about sobriety?
- How would it feel to be in control of your life?
- What are the good things about this change?
- What are the not-so-good things about not using a substance?
- What do you think you will lose if you give up drinking alcohol?
- How would you like things to be different?
- What do you miss?
Attend Therapy and Practice Self-Care
When entering a loved one into rehab, it is difficult to know how to help. Attending individual, group, and family therapies is not just for the one with a substance use disorder. There is much to learn about addiction, self-discovery, and identifying with others about their struggles. Opening up to be vulnerable about how addiction changes everything in life opens the door to self-awareness.
Practicing self-care is vital to the support system’s survival. Taking the time to relax, reflect, and rest will build strength for supportive measures. Taking the time to eat right, exercise, get a haircut, and buy flowers can help maintain normal during this challenging period. Meditation, spending time in nature, and keeping in touch with friends is vital to remain supportive.
Don’t Force A Loved One to Go to Rehab if They Decline
Although children under the age of 18 may need to attend rehab and parents may be able to facilitate that, those who are adults must make the decision on their own. Once the conversation about addiction and treatment is over, the only supportive move to make is to initiate research on treatment centers. It is vital to be patient and be caring and persistent. Read about treatment centers and their successes online, and find facilities that offer beneficial programs.
Receive Solid Advice About Getting a Loved One Into Rehab in Georgia
Finding advice from professionals that suddenly makes things click and leads to a successful admission into rehab for your loved one may seem unachievable. The Retreat of Atlanta, Georgia, provides honest and educational advice for those trying to get a loved one into rehab. Our treatment staff has experience with families and support systems faced with this challenging dilemma. Contact us to hear about the success stories of our past patients and hear that missing link of info you need.