Addiction is a disease that impacts the whole family. And one of the relationships it affects most is the parent-child relationship. Children often have a difficult time understanding addiction, which can lead to feelings of guilt, worthlessness, anxiety and stress. If these feelings are not addressed, they can trickle into adulthood and affect relationships and lifestyle choices.
At Awakenings Treatment Center, we make family therapy a priority. All clients can benefit from our Family Support program, which is offered weekly. We cover many topics, including parenting in recovery. Below you’ll find more information on this topic and how to start rebuilding your ties with your child.
Tips for Healthy Parenting in Addiction Recovery
When you complete your time at an addiction treatment center, you’ll return home and gradually take on more responsibility. As a parent in addiction recovery, some of your first responsibilities may involve your children. You might drop them off at school, bring them to their sports practice, or help them with their homework.
As you rebuild your life as a parent, here are some tips to keep in mind.
Work on rebuilding trust.
Addiction is a disease that shatters trust in the family unit. You may have been unreliable or absent from your child’s life, so you’ll have to be prepared to rebuild this trust. You can’t rush this process, either. Trust will develop with time and consistency. In the meantime, the best approach is to show up, be present, and keep your promises.
Communicate openly and honestly.
Parents in addiction recovery don’t need to share all the details, but should be open and honest with your child. Of course, share as much as you feel appropriate for their age and maturity level. But what you don’t want to do is lie. A great way to practice open communication is by setting aside time each day to share about your days. Ask questions, and let your child do the same.
Before you entered our drug rehab in Agoura Hills, you likely had a lot of shame and guilt. And as a parent, you might be especially hard on yourself. However, you can’t change the past, which is why you must forgive and move forward.
Now is your time to be the best version of yourself – and that includes being a reliable and responsible parent.
Take care of yourself.
Parents in addiction recovery also need to practice good self-care. You can’t make good decisions for yourself if you’re exhausted and stressed. You also have needs, so it’s important to make time for your meetings and therapy program. Some parents even do well in a sober living program, even if it means being away for a short time.
Start Treatment with Built-In Family Support
Addiction can affect anyone – and parents are no exception. Awakenings Treatment Center offers comprehensive outpatient rehab in Agoura Hills. We have a Family Support program designed to bring families together. To learn more, contact our admissions department today.