When your teenager is dealing with a substance abuse problem, helping him or her recover may require the help of your entire family. The more involved your family is in his or her recovery, the better the odds are for your teenager. Here are some tips you and your family can follow to help support your teenager.
Before your teen leaves an in-patient substance abuse treatment program, you and your family need to plan for his or her return. One part of planning is discussing continuing care plans with the program's counselors. Work with the staff to develop a program that can address the challenges your teen can face after leaving treatment.
Ideally, the plan will include not only you and your teen, but also other family members and friends who hope for your teen's recovery. Prior to your teen's return, meet with everyone to discuss the plan and what everyone's role will be in helping.
Offer Support for the Program
Once your teen is actually at home, following the continuing care plans that were outlined for him or her by the counselors is important. You and your family can offer support in a number of ways, including checking in with your teen to ensure that he or she is making it to support groups.
Another way you can help your teen is by providing transportation. Remember, anything can be a roadblock for your teen while he or she is learning to deal with the addiction. By offering to transport your teen back and forth to meetings and groups, you can help make the process easier.
Know When to Step Back
As a parent of a child dealing with addiction, it can be hard to step back sometimes, but it's necessary. If you appear to be hovering over your teen all the time, he or she can develop feelings of resentment and believe you do not trust him or her.
At the same time, you also do not want to step back too far. You want your teen to know that you are there for him or her when needed.
To avoid stepping over boundaries, sit down and talk to your teen about the level of involvement he or she wants and needs. For instance, you and your teen can agree that you can attend a certain number of meetings or groups with him or her.
Work with the professionals at your teen's substance abuse treatment program to determine other ways that you can offer support. Contact a local psychiatrist, such as Dr. Lewis A. Weber & Associates, for additional information.Share