Addiction is a mental disease that causes changes in the brain. These changes affect how people with addiction think, act and feel. Although they might not notice, their behaviors also affect the people around them. Family therapy is one method of repairing the damage that addiction causes to relationships.
Understanding Family Therapy
This type of group therapy helps more than just those who have a drug addiction. As the name suggests, it also helps family members. However, the word “family” in this case means anyone the patient considers to be his or her family. It’s not restricted to relatives or even those who live in the household.
The idea behind this method is that families are a system of parts. When one part changes, it triggers other parts to change. Basically, when one family member has an addiction, it triggers changes in other family members.
This effect causes unhealthy family dynamics such as secrets and lies. In response, some family members may become distant while others act out. When the family dynamic is already unhealthy, the development of addiction can cause more turmoil.
Even after those with addiction enter recovery, the unhealthy patterns remain. The reason is because the rest of the family has a hard time adjusting to change. Family therapy can help everyone heal, mend their bonds and learn to support each other through these changes.
There are two main objectives in family therapy. The first is to provide the right type of support for each family member. Behavior therapy is a common technique that counselors use. Everyone needs this support so that they can work toward relapse prevention and a steady recovery.
The second objective is to strengthen emotional health in each person. Therapists work with each family member to address his or her emotional issues. They might even suggest individual therapy to dig deeper into those problems. The purpose of this goal is to help the family thrive as a whole.
Counselors may achieve these objectives by helping the family reconcile distrust issues. The family members may learn to forgive where they have guilt and understand what causes them frustration. Therapists can also teach them how to resolve conflicts and dilemmas in healthy ways.
Therapy Session Structure
For family therapy, part or all of a family meet with a therapist. On average, a session lasts for about one hour. The focus of the sessions may change from one person to the whole family. While counselors try to keep emotions in control, the sessions can become intense when volatile subjects come up.
Before sessions start, family therapists may ask each participant to sign a contract. The contract shows that they agree to behave in a certain way, such as not interrupting each other. They might also ask for consent form signatures to show that the participants understand the rules of confidentiality and privacy.
During each session, the counselors may ask questions or listen to the family talk. They learn how each member behaves and communicates with others. They also learn the family’s strengths and weaknesses. This information allows them to choose the right techniques to give the family the help it needs.
At the end of the session, family therapists might give the participants homework. Sometimes they assign activities for them to do together. Other times, they may assign goals for the week for each person.
Serenity House Detox Understands the Importance Family Bonds
People cherish the strong bonds they have with family members. Serenity House Detox understands how important it is to repair those bonds when addiction causes turmoil. We provide family therapy to give those with addiction and their loved ones the support they need. In addition, we offer other therapy services during detox, such as:
- Individual therapy
- Group therapy
- Cognitive behavioral therapy
Don’t let addiction bring your family to ruin. Get detox for your son, daughter or other family member in Fort Lauderdale or West Palm Beach, Florida. Call Serenity House Detox today at 866-294-5306 to get started.