Someone you love has finally decided that they are ready to live sober and has entered recovery. That loved one needs your support, and it is vital that you not give up on them.

The first thing you need to understand is that recovery does not mean cure; it does not mean there will be no relapse.

So how do you prepare for supporting the person you love through recovery?

5 Tips on preparing to support your loved one in recovery

Here are five tips to help prepare to support the family member or friend in rehab. 

  1. Understand and accept that recovery is not a cure, there will be a relapse or two
  2. Have a plan to deal with relapse. 
  3. Prepare a good support group not just for the addict after recovery but for you too. Your group should be there during and after rehab for you.
  4. Seek counseling, personal, and family after the addict is out of recovery. Your therapy can begin while your loved one is in rehab, to help you get a handle on feelings of resentment, anger, depression, etc. 
  5. Clean house; remove anything that reminds the addict of the alcohol or substance they were using. Cleaning applies to your home as well as theirs if you do not live together. Create a sober living atmosphere for them to help reduce the chances of relapse. 

While some of these tips may sound like you are trying to take responsibility for the other person, such as cleaning your houses, that is not the case. What you are doing is supporting them by providing them the best chances at continued recovery. 

Things not to do in support of the addict

There are some things you should not do when trying to support the recovery of a loved one. Here are some tips:

  1. Do not ignore the problem
  2. Do not come at them from a place of anger or resentment
  3. Do  not look down at them or look at them as a failure
  4. Do not enable them
  5. Do not force them into or back to rehab

It can be hard not to give up, especially if they have successfully completed treatment and have stayed sober for 12 months before they relapse. It can feel like they gave up on the recovery and your relationship, but you need to change your negative view. Remember, addiction is a disease. Do you blame a cancer patient who has a relapse? Of course not, and addiction is also a disease. You can support them, talk to them about going back to rehab but do not force it.

449 Recovery has a monitored detox program and can teach life skills and tools to help reduce the chance of relapse. Call us today (855) 435-7449 to learn more about the skills you can learn to help you should you relapse and what to do about it.