Family Program

WHY DOES WVADS, INC. HAVE A FAMILY PROGRAM?

Addiction is a family disease that affects all family members, as well as significant others. The patient and family become diseased, and if the patient is only treated, they will re-gain their health, balance, and recovery, yet, the family will remain ill. Research of all types supports the fact that family therapy and support significantly improves the recovery process.

HOW CAN THE WVADS, INC. FAMILY PROGRAM HELP ME?

Our Family Counselor will assist you with:

  • Advise families on pertinent issues pertaining to their loved one’s addiction and recovery
  • Assist families with communication difficulties
  • Identify areas of family dysfunction and barriers
  • Refer the family for other specialty treatment when and if necessary and appropriate
  • Assist with family re-structuring and re-bonding
  • Elicit questions from family members regarding areas of concern for their loved ones
  • Help your family to normalize concerns and feelings
  • Help the family to understand their current level of functioning
  • Provide educational insights into various aspects of addiction and recovery
  • Assist the family in re-framing its problems to make problem solving more achievable
  • Help family members identify new forms of collaborative efforts and alternative, mutually acceptable, ways to cope with difficulties
  • Assist family members who are difficult to engage better understand the addictive process
  • Constructively deal with any family member’s strong resistance to change
  • Teach family members coping skills, conflict resolution, and conflict mediation skills
  • Educate family on the importance of the role of the fellowships of Al-Anon and Al-Ateen
  • Provide information and guidance on relapse prevention strategies that will enhance and augment their loved one’s recovery

SOMETIMES I FEEL GUILTY ABOUT MY LOVED ONE’S
DRUG AND ALCOHOL USE

Remember the 3 C’s:
You didn’t CAUSE it!
You cannot CONTROL it!
You cannot CURE it!

You can, however, become an effective partner with our agency in the treatment of the disease of addiction. The more you learn about addiction and why your loved one is using and abusing sub-stances, the greater the potential of intervention, early detection and identification, effective treat-ment, and a healthy and sustained recovery.

Prochaska et al. 1992, identifies the 5 Stages of Change people go through when they suffer from the disease of addiction;

(1) Pre-contemplation
(2) Contemplation
(3) Preparation
(4) Action
(5) Maintenance

During our family program, you will learn the significance of each stage and the role they play in getting the patient to the point where they are “SICK AND TIRED OF BEING SICK AND TIRED”. Remember the greatest gift our Higher Power gives to any human being is PAIN—Think about it! Pain forces us to go inside ourselves for answers. It causes us to do soul searching and to take a personal inventory. That is why we will remind you to never take the PAIN from your loved one who has a drug and alcohol problem; they have earned that pain and prolonged emotional pain will prove to be a catalyst in getting them to move to change. If there is no pain or consequences, then they will have no reason to change. Families need to be mindful that when our loved ones with addiction hurt, we want to reduce or eliminate their pain and consequences. If you are prone to do this, then consider this definition of enabling….Every time you make an addict’s wrong a right, you give them a right to make another wrong.”

WHEN IS THE WVADS, INC. FAMILY PROGRAM?

The Family Program is conducted every Wednes- day evening from 6:00 – 8:00pm on-site at WVADS, Inc., 437 N. Main St., Wilkes-Barre, PA

WHO IS ELIGIBLE TO PARTICIPATE?

Any family member who resides in Luzerne and Wyoming Counties, Pennsylvania, who is concerned about the use of drugs and alcohol by their loved ones. Your loved one does not have to be in treatment at WVADS, Inc. for you to participate. Family members of WVADS, Inc. patients are especially encouraged to attend.

DO I HAVE TO PRE-REGISTER TO ATTEND THE FAMILY PROGRAM?

No. You just have to show up on any Wednesday evening from 6:00-8:00pm. You will be welcomed by our family counselor and made to feel comfortable.

IS THERE A COST TO THE PROGRAM?

There is no assigned cost for your participation in our agency’s family program; however, donations and contributions are appreciated and accepted, but not required.

WHAT DO YOU MEAN WHEN YOU SAY ADDICTION IS A FAMILY DISEASE….HOW CAN I BE AFFECTED?

When your loved one uses drugs and alcohol, the family and all its members undergo some very serious life-changing events. Addiction impacts family members in many ways. You may experience many of these;

  • Feelings of abandonment
  • Anxiety
  • Fear
  • Anger
  • Hostility and resentment
  • Embarrassment
  • Guilt
  • Feelings of failure
  • Pre-occupation with loved one’s use
  • Shame
  • Rejection
  • Defeat
  • Remorse
  • Feelings that you want to cut ties with your loved one or seek legal protection
  • Additionally, your family unit will also go through many negative changes and consequences;
  • Family becomes isolated
  • Communication breaks down
  • Negativism will become the norm in the family, highlighted by complaints, criticisms, displeasure, and depressive home environment
  • Rule setting and enforcement will become inconsistent
  • Family structure, rules, and boundaries will fail
  • Messages in the home will become unclear and confusing
  • Family activities will be significantly diminished and the harmony of the home will become non-existent
  • Some family members will deny that their loved one has a drug/alcohol problem, which will further divide family members and set up unhealthy alliances between certain family members
  • Other family members will displace their anger or will be afraid to express their outrage with the drug and alcohol using and abusing family member; often times, other family members will begin to misuse drugs/alcohol to manage or deal with their repressed feelings (self-medication)

Remember, when your children grow up in a home where their parent or mentor has a drug and alcohol problem that goes untreated, the child will learn 3 things as they grow older…

  • DON’T TALK
  • DON’T FEEL
  • DON’T TRUST

These are 3 more reasons why you should consider help for you and your family members.

WHAT ARE SOME RESOURCES THAT I CAN RESEARCH FOR FURTHER INFORMATION?