Addressing the Extended Issues of Recovering Alcoholics
- Published on Friday, 24 February 2017 13:41
- Eliot Chapman
When a loved one or a close friend has been treated in one of the United Kingdom’s most recognised alcohol rehab
centres and summarily has completed their program, it is natural to experience a number of conflicting emotions. On one hand, the fact that they’ve made such significant progress is very reassuring in its own right, breeding a deep sense of optimism. On the other hand, you can realise deep down that there’s still quite a long way to go, you’re not able to predict the future and the road head will be likely challenging.
Specifically during this time, the support and help of family and friends could make all the difference between highly successful treatment and complete failure. From keeping the person in question away from temptation and trying to minimise exposure to different triggers and just being there for them in general, this adds up to the kind of after-care help that is a important as rehab itself.
Nonetheless, it is crucial to be realistic in terms of both long-term and immediate expectations alike. Even if the alcohol addiction is kicked and the person concerned makes a great recovery, there will still be a number of challenges to face which are best considered and acknowledged ahead of time.
For instance, it’s quite common for anybody coming out of alcoholism addiction to find themselves with some financial problems. It might have been that their addiction resulted in them being fired, they might have had money problems at the time of their alcohol addiction or they might have been forced to spend all their money on treatment. In all such cases, financial problems cause precisely the kind of everyday concern and stress that could send a recovering addict right back to the bottle.
Contrary to common assumption, offering constant handouts for people in such situations doesn’t represent a truly proactive approach to the issue. The reason is that it does not in any way provide them with the motivation to start regaining their independence, nor does it assist with self-esteem or the temptation to blow the money on old habits and inadvisable purchases. Money matters should be discussed openly and it is naturally important to make sure they have a roof over their head and food in the fridge. But at the same time, the money help should be provided under strict terms which you yourself need to devise.
In the more advanced cases of alcohol addiction and abuse, it’s largely inevitable that the person in question will experience a number of psychological and physical health issues. Not only this, but the recovery and treatment processes in their own right can both bring along some side-effects, which could for some time seem to exacerbate their issues. This can be troubling and daunting for family members and friends, who to a significant extent feel powerless to help and need to instead simply offer support to the individual in question through the process.
One of the most crucial thins anyone involved in a support network can do is to make sure that the individual in question sees their physician, therapist or other professional service provider regularly as instructed. Missing appointments, making excuses and so on can be significantly detrimental, though this is a highly common behaviour among recovering addicts. You might not be able to offer them the assistance they require, but you can at least make sure they get the needed help.
Last but not least, it is perfectly possible that the general behaviour and lifestyle of the person in question prior to their treatment program cost them some important relationships. Chances are that the relationship you yourself enjoyed with them has to an extent changed as a result of their alcohol problems. Contrary to popular assumption, this is something that should not just be brushed to one side and forgotten, but instead dealt with head-on in a responsible and proactive manner.
This means offering encouragement to the recovering alcoholic to talk openly about their relationship troubles, with you yourself being free to do so regarding your own feelings and thoughts. There is plenty you can do to help them, be it contacting their family members and friends to inform them of the progress being achieved, arranging meetings to break the ice once again and in general helping them stay on the right track. There are also so many professional relationship therapy services available, which could do a great job in assisting with rebuilding bridges where they might have been burned in the past. There’s no such thing as a key relationship that can’t be put back on track – something that the recovering person must keep in mind at all times.