Family Communication for Utah Inpatient Addiction Recovery

family communication inpatient addiction recovery

The process of addiction recovery is one that many people hope to navigate with the help of others close to them, and family members are the most common resources often utilized here. For many who are spending time in an inpatient addiction recovery treatment center, communication with family will be a vital part of recovery that should be promoted and encouraged.

At Brighton Recovery Center, we’re proud to offer caring, comprehensive forms of addiction recovery to those in need throughout Utah, including our Residential Treatment program that typically ranges from 30-90 days of inpatient treatment. These programs include many areas of family involvement, from family therapy sessions to many ways participants can stay in touch with their family throughout their stay. Why is this form of communication important for many people in inpatient facilities, and what kinds of recommendations can we make to both our guests and their families for maintaining this sort of back-and-forth support? Here are some important basics.

Value of Staying In Touch — For Some

For many who are taking part in inpatient addiction recovery, keeping in touch with family throughout their stay will lead to several benefits:

  • Comfort and support: Often, those who are struggling with addiction feel a great sense of isolation and loneliness. Having family members to reach out to can help provide comfort and support during this difficult time.
  • A connection to home: It’s also important for those in inpatient treatment to feel as though they’re not completely cut off from the world. Being able to communicate with family can help provide a sense of continuity and connection to home.
  • Shared responsibility: In addition, family communication can also help to share the responsibility for recovery between family members and the individual in treatment. This can be especially helpful if there are concerns about relapse or ongoing struggles with addiction after leaving inpatient treatment.
  • Identifying triggers: In some cases, family members are some of those best positioned to help identify any potential triggers for relapse. Receiving input from family members can help those in treatment be proactive about avoiding any potential setbacks.
  • Helping manage family issues: In many situations, family members are part of the support system that helps manage any potential problems that may arise during addiction recovery. This can include anything from helping to make sure bills are paid on time to providing a listening ear and emotional support.
  • Identifying co-dependency: While this may also take place during family therapy sessions, it’s vital that family members be on the lookout for co-dependency issues that may arise. Co-dependency can hinder addiction recovery and should be addressed as soon as possible.

At the same time, we want to be very clear: Communication with family is not ideal for everyone in an inpatient addiction recovery program. Some people may even prefer to avoid it, and this could be for a few reasons:

  • Family leads to triggers: In some unfortunate cases, family members may be one of the main triggers for addiction. If this is the case, communication should be avoided until the individual feels comfortable and safe enough to engage in it.
  • They don’t have a support system at home: For some people, family may not be a strong source of support. If this is the case, reaching out to other loved ones or support groups may be a better option.
  • They feel they’re burdening family members with their struggles: Finally, some people may avoid communication with family out of fear that they are burdening them with their struggles. This is often not the case, but if this is a concern, it’s important to talk to family members about it.

Know that in our Brighton Recovery Center programs, there will be no pressure to communicate with family if you don’t want to. If you do, however, we’re happy to facilitate this however possible.

Tips for Communication From Inpatient Facilities to Family

Here are some tips we often provide to those who are in our inpatient programs and are looking to maintain quality communication with their family during their stay:

  • Agree on format ahead of time: Will you be calling, texting, or emailing? Decide this ahead of time and be consistent with your method of communication.
  • Be specific in your updates: When sending an update to family, be as specific as possible. This will help ensure that they have a clear understanding of what’s going on and can provide better support.
  • Don’t burden unnecessarily: While your family is here to support you, don’t rely on them to be your sole support system. Remember that you need to take care of yourself as well and should reach out to other resources as needed.
  • End on a positive: Even if you and your family have disagreements, do your very best to wrap things up on a positive note. This will help to maintain the relationship going forward.

Tips for Families Communicating to Inpatient Facilities

On the flip side, here are some tips we offer to family members of those in addiction recovery programs if they’re looking to stay in touch:

  • Don’t be pushy: If your loved one doesn’t feel comfortable communicating, don’t push them. This could do more harm than good. This includes bugging them to respond to texts or calls if they’ve gone a few hours without doing so — just give them some time.
  • Start small: If your loved one is open to communication, start with small updates and work your way up. This will make it easier for them to handle and will help to build trust between you both.
  • Be supportive: Above all else, be supportive. Addiction recovery is a difficult process and your loved one needs all of the support they can get.
  • Be willing to point out triggers: Part of the support you’re providing here is helping your loved one stay accountable. If you see a potential trigger, be sure to point it out in a supportive way.
  • End on a positive: As with inpatient communication, try to end all conversations on a positive note. This will help to keep things positive and supportive between you both.

For more on communication between those in inpatient addiction recovery programs and their families, or to learn about any of our addiction treatment or rehab programs in Utah, speak to the caring staff at Brighton Recovery Center today.

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