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1 G O O Y B D to Send-Off Your How Loved One to Rehab O O D B Y E

2 Table of Contents

3 G O O D B Goodbye is Saying Not Easy If a loved one is abusing drugs or alcohol, helping them enter a rehab program is an important first step in treating their addiction. Saying goodbye, however, is not easy, especially since many rehab programs prohibit contact between participants and family members/friends for the first part of the program. 3 How to Send-Off Your Loved One to Rehab As your loved one prepares to leave for rehab, it is natural to feel many complex emotions. While saying goodbye is not easy, it is an important process that can bring closure to a difficult chapter of substance abuse and prepare both you and a loved one for the next steps in the journey. Y

4 Emotions to Express Positive When Saying Goodbye When a loved one is abusing drugs, their unpredictable behavior can be incredibly frustrating and overwhelming. Witnessing mood swings, carelessness, lying and other irrational, hurtful behavior from someone you love so deeply is not easy. When your loved one finally does enter rehab, coping with their absence can be just as overwhelming. 4 How to Send-Off Your Loved One to Rehab Feelings of relief can give way to anxiety, fear, and worry.

5 1 # Congratulate your loved one on entering treatment The decision to enter treatment is one of the most difficult choices that your loved one will ever make. Admitting to a substance problem is no easy feat. Your loved one may be second-guessing the decision to enter rehab and feeling anxious and nervous about what to expect. 5 How to Send-Off Your Loved One to Rehab Start your goodbye with a heartfelt congratulations to your loved one for his decision to enter treatment. Reaffirm to your loved one that this is indeed the right path for them and that you are very proud of their decision.

6 2 love and forgiveness # Focus on While forgiving your loved one for the pain they caused you can be a long process, sending your loved one off to rehab amidst anger, disagreement, or fighting can be detrimental to their recovery process. Refrain from passing judgment or criticizing your loved one; instead, emphasize your love, compassion and support. Express understanding, and if you are ready to do so forgiveness. 6 How to Send-Off Your Loved One to Rehab Tell your loved one that you care deeply about their health and well being, that you love them very much, and that you will be here for them after they complete rehab. It is okay to still be angry and hurt, and it may take a very long time for you to work through these feelings. Keep in mind that there will be opportunities to address these painful emotions in the future. Right now, however, it is important to reiterate your love and support.

7 3 # Build confidence As your loved one gets ready to depart for rehab, it is natural for him or her to feel anxious, fearful, nervous, and even angry. If your loved one has tried to stop abusing drugs or alcohol in the past and relapsed, your loved one may also be experiencing feelings of shame, embarrassment, and frustration over the prospect of entering rehab again. More than ever, your loved one needs to hear how much you believe in their ability to get healthy and sober. 7 How to Send-Off Your Loved One to Rehab Tell your loved one how proud you are of their decision to seek treatment. Phrases like, I am proud of you for taking this step and I believe in you will help build their confidence and reaffirm that their decision to enter treatment is the right one. Even if you are worried about your loved one s commitment to sobriety, this is not the time or place to express those concerns. Focus on delivering a positive message of support.

8 4 # Express hope for the future Your loved one needs reassurance that entering rehab is indeed the right choice and will lead to a more positive future. Before your loved one leaves for rehab, end your goodbye with a reference to positive, future activities. 8 How to Send-Off Your Loved One to Rehab Maybe you and your loved one always talked about taking a trip together, attending a favorite team s sporting event, or sharing another special activity together. While you don t have to make any concrete plans, expressing hope for the future is important for your loved one and reminds them that you will still be here for them once they complete treatment.

9 with Separation: Dealing How to Cope When a Loved One is in Rehab First, take a deep breath and acknowledge the fact that your loved one will be in good hands. They are finally receiving the treatment that they need. Depending on the type of rehab, your loved one will be well cared for by a team of addiction specialists, medical professionals, and nursing personnel with a background in substance abuse treatment. 9 How to Send-Off Your Loved One to Rehab Next, keep in mind that peers who share the same struggles with substance abuse will surround your loved one. This supportive environment is exactly where your loved one needs to be in order to address his addiction and take positive steps towards long-term sobriety.

10 May be Contact Difficult at First In the early days of the rehab program, your loved one may be prohibited from contacting you. Do not take this personally; it is part of the treatment process. Keep in mind that your loved one will be receiving much needed medical care, group therapy, and one-on-one counseling. 10 How to Send-Off Your Loved One to Rehab Depending on the type of program, your loved one will also be participating in a variety of positive, self-esteem building activities, such as rope courses or adventure challenges, daily exercise, yoga, meditation, and art therapy.

11 Loved One Needs to Your Focus on Treatment It is important that your loved one be able to dedicate their entire focus to sobriety. Addressing addiction is a complex process. Especially during the early days of treatment, your loved one should not be distracted with outside contact even if both of you miss each other. 11 How to Send-Off Your Loved One to Rehab When the time is right in the treatment process, your loved one s rehab center will reach out to you and involve you in the recovery process. Until then, you may wish to write your loved one letters or keep a journal of your experiences while your loved one is in rehab.

12 advantage of Take Opportunities When you are unable to contact your loved one, it is natural to feel isolated. You may benefit from joining a support group for the families of individuals who are currently in rehab. The rehab center where your loved one is currently enrolled will have opportunities for family counseling and joint counseling sessions. 12 How to Send-Off Your Loved One to Rehab Take advantage of these opportunities as ways to better understand addiction and the recovery process, and the role that you can play to support your loved one s recovery.

13 Saying Goodbye: After The Next Steps After you say goodbye to your loved one, there are many things that you can do on your own support your loved one while they are in rehab. This includes educating yourself about addiction, seeking 13 How to Send-Off Your Loved One to Rehab counseling for yourself to help deal with your own emotions, engaging in self-care activities, and when you are ready participating in a joint counseling program or family workshop at your loved one s treatment center.

14 1 # Educate yourself about addiction Many rehab centers offer addiction education programs for family members. These programs will help you better understand the nature of addiction, the treatment that your loved one will be completing, and how you can best support your loved one during the treatment process. Addiction is very complex and different rehab centers follow different approaches to treatment. If your loved one is also struggling with anxiety or depression, your loved one may benefit from dual diagnosis treatment. 14 How to Send-Off Your Loved One to Rehab Addiction education programs will help you better understand the different treatment options available at your loved one s rehab center, including alternative therapies or holistic healing treatments. The more you understand about the science behind addiction and the addiction treatment process, the better equipped you will be to support your loved one during and after rehab.

15 2 # Seek counseling for yourself Supporting your loved one during the rehabilitation process will not be easy. In all likelihood, you are already emotionally exhausted from staging an intervention and helping your loved one take the first step towards sobriety by entering treatment. 15 How to Send-Off Your Loved One to Rehab With so much focus on your loved one, it can be easy to overlook your own needs. Self-care is incredibly important. Now, more than ever, you need to take care of yourself.

16 Your Expressing Fears Counseling provides a safe space to be vulnerable and express your fears, concerns and anxieties. Yoga, meditation, prayer, exercise, art therapy, and other self-care measures are important for nurturing yourself and also helping you work through emotions of pain, hurt, anger, fear, sadness, and anxiety that you may be experiencing in relation to your loved one s addiction struggles. 16 How to Send-Off Your Loved One to Rehab Through counseling, you can focus on healing yourself.

17 3 # Participate in a family workshop or joint counseling session Addiction treatment centers typically provide family workshops and joint counseling sessions where family members can participate in treatment alongside their loved one. These joint sessions are incredibly beneficial for creating a safe space in which you and your loved one can talk about the ways that their substance abuse impacted your life. It is natural to feel angry, resentful, and hurt over their behavior, not to mention gravely concerned and anxious for your loved one s well being. 17 How to Send-Off Your Loved One to Rehab You may also feel emotionally exhausted from multiple attempts to get your loved one to acknowledge their substance abuse program and enter rehab. After all, no one wants to watch a loved one needlessly suffer. Addiction specialists and rehab counselors will lead the family workshop/joint counseling session so you can constructively express your feelings.

18 Will More Than Likely You Miss Your Loved One While you may miss your loved one greatly during rehab and be very committed to the rehab process, it is still normal to be a bit wary of actually visiting the treatment center. Participation in family workshops is beneficial for several reasons: The addiction specialist/rehab counselor will have an opportunity to observe family dynamics in person. Participating in the treatment program demonstrates to your loved one that you support them. You will have an opportunity to constructively share and discuss how the entire family has been affected by your loved one s addiction. 18 How to Send-Off Your Loved One to Rehab

19 Your Support Loved One Family workshops are also an important opportunity to learn more about the best ways to support your loved one during the recovery process and avoid enabling behaviors. While no one wants to see a loved one suffer, sometimes we can end up enabling addiction without even realizing. 19 How to Send-Off Your Loved One to Rehab Learning about substance abuse, including prevalence, symptoms and causes, as well as the type of enabling behaviors that one should avoid, is an important part of the recovery process.

20 You Play a Vital Role in Recovery Remember, even with your loved one in rehab, you are not helpless. There are many things you can be doing to support their recovery. 20 How to Send-Off Your Loved One to Rehab Doing your part helps to ensure a smooth transition process once your loved completes rehab and returns home.

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