Confronting substance abuse is a complicated and daunting reality. It is difficult to come to terms with your need for professional help. It is presumably even more difficult to express this to loved ones and family members. Being forthcoming and vulnerable with those around you may cause you to feel very exposed.
However, involving your family and friends in your recovery journey creates a support system for you. There are many benefits to having a network of trustworthy individuals.
What to Expect When Having These Conversations
While talking with family and friends about addiction is helpful, you may experience various emotions. Such emotions may be hard to handle, so you may need to consider having a professional moderate these conversations. You will also want to prepare. Some emotions you might experience include:
Feelings of Shame
Shame may be one of the most common sentiments. It is natural to feel slightly embarrassed about the need for treatment. Understand that you do not have anything to be ashamed of.
Making the steps toward a healthier lifestyle is the right direction. There is no shame in being honest about needing help.
Feelings of Guilt
One of the harsh realities of addiction is that it skews priorities. Perhaps your struggle with addiction has caused you to place the substance above essential factors in your life. It may have impacted your financial situation, your interpersonal relationships, or your time with your family. Due to this, it is possible to feel a sense of guilt.
Remember that your substance struggle is not an indicator of your love or devotion to your family or friends. It does not nullify or invalidate your role in their lives. However, it does significantly impact your ability to be present and show up for them in appropriate ways.
Try not to be consumed or overwhelmed by guilt. Instead, try to be motivated by the idea of how sobriety will allow you to be more available to your loved ones.
Feelings of Pride
In vulnerable moments, it can become easy to deflect and allow pride to stand in the way of your transparency. It can also be tempting to mask actual pain, insecurities, and other unfavorable emotions to appear as though you are doing better than you are. Letting your guard down at a time like this is perfectly okay.
Irrespective of what you are seeking help for, your humility will allow you to open up to all the different avenues of treatment. Whether it be substance use, mental health, or co-occurring disorder, your best chance at wellness rests in your ability to set your pride aside. It will make room for you to be receptive and open-minded about the treatment available.
Try to Be Transparent
In many ways, having transparent and candid conversations about your present circumstance with loved ones may serve as a precursor for how you will interact with your clinician during treatment. Practicing frankness, honesty, truthfulness, and vulnerability with the people you love and care about is beneficial to your wellness.
It is natural to feel as though you must have a guard up during such times. Please be advised that this does not positively serve you in any way. Isolation, reclusiveness, and solitude are all the antithesis of your wellness. These actions, although tempting, deter you from where you truly need to be.
Recovery is not meant to be achieved in isolation. Instead, it is intended to be achieved with an entire community behind you.
Push Past Your Fears
You will feel less alone if you allow yourself to be transparent. It can be easy to let fear take over during extreme vulnerability.
The fear of being judged or misunderstood may initially monopolize your ability to hold these discussions. Be encouraged to push past this fear. Allow your wellness to take priority above how you may be received.
Although it may initially be difficult, do your best to find some common ground with family and friends. You know and understand more than anyone the breadth of your feelings. Your emotions, as intense as they may seem, indicate how you truly feel inside. They should be listened to and shared with the people who care most about you.
Try to prepare your family for the reality of treatment. The alterations in your day-to-day life should be made plain to your family for them to assist you in carrying out such a plan.
Southern California Sunrise Recovery Center cares about you and your health needs. Seeking treatment is a courageous decision, the first step in a series of good choices you will make toward recovery. You may wonder how to discuss the need for treatment with friends and family. Or how you can hold these difficult conversations with loved ones for the best possible outcome.
The certified clinicians at SoCal Sunrise are readily available to help you address and answer these questions. Our services provide a comprehensive approach to care designed to meet your and your family’s needs. With us, you will develop the foundation to set up a lasting recovery.
If you find yourself at a crossroads and need to discuss treatment with loved ones, allow us to help. Contact us today to learn more about our programs, and call (714) 942-4143.