4 Tips on How to be There for a Loved One During Treatment

If your loved one has made the difficult decision to go to treatment, you may be wondering what you can do to be there for them. This can be especially true if they are entering residential rehab or traveling far for treatment. Here are four tips on how to be there for your loved one during treatment to make sure they have the best experience possible.

How to be There for a Loved One During Treatment: Educate Yourself

The first way you can be there for a loved one during treatment is by educating yourself on the disease of addiction. The more you are able to understand addiction, the better you will be able to understand your loved ones and the patterns they may have fallen into.

Educating yourself about addiction can include:

  • Doing research. There is a wealth of information online, including in our Cliffside Malibu blog, about the disease of addiction. You can also watch videos, take a class, or read books on addiction.
  • Seeking help. Talking to professionals in the field of addiction, whether at your loved one’s treatment center or elsewhere, can help you get an outside perspective.
  • Learning the signs of relapse. While your loved one is in treatment, it is important to learn the signs of relapse ahead of time so that you are prepared upon their arrival.

#2 Be Part of Their Treatment

Being part of your loved one’s treatment can be extremely beneficial, especially if they are a close family member. If possible, attend therapy sessions with them. Visit them on family day or visiting day. Attend their last day ceremony. Call them frequently to check in with them. Speak to their therapist to see how their progress is coming along, if possible.

#3 Let Go of the Past

Addiction can make people act in ways they normally wouldn’t. There is a good chance that your loved one has created a volatile environment for you at some point, argued with you, been abusive in some form, or has otherwise mistreated you. It is important that when your loved one apologizes and seeks forgiveness for his or her actions that you are receptive and able to let go of the past.

This can be difficult, depending on the degree of your loved one’s actions. However, living with guilt and shame for past actions can cause a relapse situation down the line. If your loved one has confidence that you have forgiven them and are able to let go of the past, they will be more successful in recovery.

#4 Be Supportive

Treatment for addiction can be emotional, overwhelming, uncomfortable, and physically challenging. Your loved one will need your support more now than ever. Being supportive is a very important way you can be there for a loved one during treatment. There are a number of ways you can be supportive:

  • Don’t use. Do your best to not use alcohol or drugs in front of your loved one while they are in early recovery. If you live with your loved one, clear any substances out of the home to help eliminate any temptations.
  • Encourage their stay in treatment. Make sure you do your best to encourage your loved one to stay in treatment, no matter how much they may be complaining about it. Treatment can be a struggle, especially in the first weeks, but don’t let them manipulate you into thinking that letting them leave is best. Continue to encourage them and remain hopeful.
  • Be there for them. Sometimes, your loved one might just need a good venting session, without necessarily any advice. Be the ear and shoulder your loved one can use when times get tough so that they know you are there for them, without judgment, when times get tough.
  • Do sober things with them. A major way you can be supportive of your loved one during treatment is by being their “sober buddy.” Navigating life after sobriety can be difficult with finding ways to spend your time. Encourage new activities, such as hiking or doing yoga, and offer to do them with your loved one.

It can be difficult to find ways to be there for a loved one during treatment, especially if they are far away. Luckily, there are many ways you can support your loved one’s successful recovery. However, it isn’t always easy. If you find yourself struggling with being there for your loved one, let us know. Cliffside Malibu is here to help your loved one’s entire support system and we can help guide you through the process.

About Cliffside Malibu

Because no two addictions are the same, we develop individualized treatment plans for every client at Cliffside Malibu. We are committed to providing evidence-based treatment through a continuum of care model across a range of levels of care, including medically supervised detox, residential treatment, day treatment, and outpatient services. Our program includes family therapy and holistic therapy. Whether an individual has a substance abuse and/or alcohol addiction, our programs are structured to create a supportive environment where healing can begin.

In addition to world-class treatment, Cliffside Malibu offers luxury accommodations, a serene environment, five-star dining, and plentiful amenities. We understand that addiction treatment is a rigorous process. Therefore, we provide for your comfort and relaxation at every turn, allowing you to rejuvenate, and meet the demands of treatment with your greatest energy and attention.

Visit Cliffside Malibu for more information.