According to the Ipsos poll conducted for Global News on substance use during the pandemic “…four in 10 respondents said they have faced mental health, addiction or alcohol issues in some form over the past year.” That’s 40% of the population.
With this is mind, we know that addiction touches the lives of all of us - addiction does not discriminate.
I had a chance to ask our Continuing Care Coordinator, Amy, a few questions about our Family Support group and to talk about the need for family services when treating addiction. One of the main misconceptions about addiction that she mentioned is that the person should have enough willpower to stop using, especially when the consequences of using become dire enough.
Yet, addiction is characterized by the compulsion and obsession to continue using despite adverse consequences. So, what can we as family and friends do?
“I started the Family Support group because I recognized that the families of the men in our program were needing help and support just as much as their loved one. Their lives had also been negatively affected by addiction. I wanted the family members to know they are not alone. There are many of us who understand and have had similar experiences.
The addict in treatment aquires tools to live a healthy life. His family also needs tools so together they can recover from the affects of addiction.”
When we recognize that our efforts to help our loved one have not worked, and as they say in Al Anon “our thinking becomes distorted by trying to force solutions and we become irritable and unreasonable without knowing it,” we are presented with the option for our own healing.
“Getting help for yourself is the best thing you can do, not only for yourself, but for your loved one who is suffering from addiction. When the family member is healthier, it changes the environment for the addict.”
To help support the family, Jericho offers a free, weekly meeting on Monday evenings open to everyone. Family support offers space for education on our own personal recovery, as well as open sharing of our experience strength and hope.
For more information about Family Support connect with Amy Lauber