Changes Online Addiction Family Support Group
The Changes Online Addiction Family Support Group is open to friends and family members of addicted persons.
It is not only the addict or alcoholic who benefits from attending support groups. It is critical that families and close friends of addict in or out of treatment take advantage of support groups.
It’s easier to think that dropping your loved one at rehab will solve the problem. In truth, the family system has contributed to addiction development and everyone needs attention and care.
We know that around 50% of a person’s vulnerability to alcoholism, and 70% to other drugs, can be linked to genetic factors. This means that it’s highly likely that addiction, in some form or other, has run in the family for a long time. Not only is it a brain disease, but it’s so deeply entrenched, it’s in our DNA. Remember, there is no short-term solution to a long-term problem.
It can take some time for the person with the brain disease to make clear & sensible choices. So family and friends play a critical role in any addicted person’s life. It’s often a crisis, not a “moment of clarity”, that brings patients into treatment and keeps them in recovery. You can do a lot to bring about and maintain the urgency that results in appropriate long-term care for your loved one.
It’s untrue that addicts and alcoholics need to be ready and willing to benefit from treatment. The disease of addiction itself renders the addict less and less capable of spontaneous recognition of the severity of their condition. Often addicts and alcoholics forced into treatment find stable recovery despite themselves. Resistant patients can recover without having to hit “rock bottom”. For some families, it can be as simple as: either continue to enable the addictive behaviour or begin to put the addicted person in a position where they have to acknowledge their illness and start to take responsibility for it.
Treatment outcomes are improved when families:
- Participate wholeheartedly in their loved one’s treatment (see the below list).
- Explore how underlying dynamics and enabling roles can contribute to either recovery or relapse. This can strengthen and extend the benefits gained in rehab. Switching enabling behaviours for healthy bottom lines will contribute to the families and your addicted loved ones’ recovery. Learn more about family roles here.
Doing the following work is important. It’ll help promote lasting change.
- Complete the collateral questionnaire and letter. These are key tools for the clinical team to help narrow the discrepancy between your loved one’s perception of their addiction, and how it really is. Imagine how well treatment would go if we relied entirely on your loved one’s story? Please pay this document a lot of attention.
- Attend the Changes Rehab online addiction family support groups every Tuesday at 5.55pm. Some families attend this group for many months and even years.
- Attend all conjoints (therapy meetings with patient and family).
- Attend two mutual help groups a week. See Al-Anon, Nar-Anon, Tough Love, CoDA, and Co-Anon. These groups are slightly different, you’ll need to attend several groups and discover which suits you best.
These groups run every Tuesday at 5.45pm – 7pm (excluding public holidays)
The Changes family support group happens once-a-week and is open to the public, not only to family members of people in Changes’ care. It is a powerful, constructive and non-judgemental therapeutic space. Families learn and share with each other with the help of a trained facilitator.
Facilitators change week-by-week and include psychiatrists, psychologists, addictions counsellors, social workers, occupational therapists as well as recovering addicts and families of recovering addicts.
Please note that the Meeting ID Zoom room stays the same each week, so you can just click the above link.
Possibly the most important lesson to be achieved from the family support group is learning how to implement and maintain healthy boundaries so that the family’s collective stance is one that supports healthy behaviour and discourages dysfunction. The support group also connects you with people who are in similar situations and may be able to help provide you with resources that they have found to be helpful (such as treatment options, therapists, etc.).
This group gives you some support and a safe space to share your own struggle with people who have gone through similar experiences.