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26 Feb 2019

Not Everyone Can Forgive: 5 Steps for Dealing with Unsupportive Family After Rehab

5 Steps for Dealing with Unsupportive Family After Rehab

If you've just been through rehab, you know all too well the damage that addiction can bring to all elements of our life.

The financial cost of drug and alcohol addiction alone is estimated to be more than $440 billion a year in the United States, but the cost of addiction can be counted in more than just dollar bills.

Addiction can cause irreparable damage to relationships with loved ones. Not every family member will be willing to easily forgive or forget. Dealing with unsupportive family is just another challenge for you to face post-rehab, so here are 5 steps to help you repair your relationships.

1. Don't Enter Conflict

Emotions will be running high, especially if a family member feels angry towards you for your actions before rehab. Don't let those emotions boil over into conflict. Once the anger is unleashed, it may be difficult to recover from.

It can also set your recovery back further. Focusing on emotions like anger can push you to crave the substance or behavior you've managed to banish as an escape. Rather than fighting with family members, remain calm and respectful.

2. Give Some Space

Unfortunately, staying calm only works to smooth over cracks when the other party is receptive to them. If that's not the case, you need to be prepared to reduce your contact with your estranged family. Time apart can allow the heat behind certain emotions to simmer down and allow for open dialogue. Once that happens, you can then begin to work on repairing your relationship. Your family and friends may need to see that you're taking your recovery seriously before they're willing to support you. Our guide to making amends with loved ones during your recovery should help you.

3. Focus on Those Who Support You

You may have unsupportive parents or judgemental siblings. It doesn't matter who doesn't support you — put your energy first into those who do. It's their support that can help you to strengthen your progress following rehab. They can help you keep on track and watch out for you when things go wrong. Take the support of every family member willing to offer it, and focus on that support before you try and make amends with family members who aren't so forthcoming.

4. Focus on Yourself

Your recovery is about building a better life for yourself, and being estranged from family doesn't change that.That's why you need to focus on yourself first and foremost. Build better habits for yourself in your day-to-day life. Deal with the issues that led you to become addicted in the first place. Only then will you be in a place where you'll be able to show you're serious about your recovery and deal with any family issues that have come from it.

Here are 7 steps you can follow to help you improve your life for the better.

5. Accept Things Have Changed

The hardest part of your recovery may be accepting that, no matter what you do, your loved ones may never learn to forgive or forget. You have to accept that things have changed in your life. Closing some doors can open others, so don't be afraid to stop putting the effort into estranged family members if it puts your recovery at risk.

If you accept the situation as it is, you can make further progress in rebuilding your life as a whole.

Don't Let Unsupportive Family Derail Your Recovery

Recovery can be as much about those around you as it is about yourself, but you can only try your best when you're dealing with unsupportive family.

Give your loved ones time to heal, and don't allow any conflict between you. Focus, in the meantime, on yourself and those who support you. If you can't repair your relationships, don't let it derail your recovery.

Family issues can't stand in the way of your future, and they can't stand in the way of your recovery. If you need support, don't be afraid to speak to us so we can help you stay sober.


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