Addiction, like all diseases, does not only affect the diagnosed individual. The pain and stress of a substance use disorder affect not only the client but also their family and social network, who suffer the pain of living with an active addict or alcoholic. Oftentimes, in order to protect their addiction, individuals with substance use disorders engage in behaviors that create dysfunction within the family system. In response, family members engage in coping mechanisms that may ultimately fuel their loved one’s addictive behavior, such as enabling. The aim of Diablo Valley’s family counseling services is to deconstruct these unhealthy and dysfunctional family dynamics and help the family unit to heal and replace these behaviors with healthy patterns.
Family counseling services at Diablo Valley Drug and Alcohol Services are also done via outpatient methods in order to allow the family of clients to participate in the treatment process without disrupting their normal daily lives. Family counseling is approached by Diablo Valley therapists as a way to help heal the entire family unit in a way that best serves each client and family’s needs.
Unfortunately, addiction and alcoholism don’t just affect the identified patient. The lies, secrets, manipulation, and destructive behavioral patterns that are part of the nature of addiction impact everyone who comes into contact with the addict or alcoholic, particularly the family. Witnessing a loved one engaging in dangerous behaviors can be extremely traumatic for their loved ones. The reactions of family members vary widely, from anger and rejection to enabling and enmeshment. All of these reactions are normal aspects of coping with a disease that isn’t easily treated. Fortunately, however, there is hope. Family counseling services can help to heal individuals from the pain of addiction and help to foster healthier relationships within the family dynamic. It’s also vital for the treatment of each client, as a supportive and healthy environment helps to promote long-term recovery.
Family counseling services at Diablo Valley involve sessions with a clinician that are designed to promote assertive communication in an emotionally beneficial setting. These sessions are geared towards:
Having a healthy family dynamic and social support network is vital for anyone who is recovering from drug or alcohol addiction. For the loved ones and family members of our clients, it’s also necessary to have an outlet for expressing the emotional ups and downs that come with living with and loving an addict or alcoholic. That’s why we offer family counseling at Diablo Valley. Through this therapeutic program, we help families learn how to best support their loved one in treatment, and also allow for families to address underlying issues and to process their experiences of dealing with active addiction or alcoholism in the home.
By attending outpatient family counseling sessions, both clients and their loved ones have an opportunity to repair damaged relationships and set healthy boundaries with one another in order to promote well-being for everyone.