The Basics

5 Critical Elements Of Family Recovery

The family offers the best chance for the addict’s recovery. And, the family needs to recover too—recover from the trauma of their loved one’s addiction. We believe there are 5 elements that are critical to recovery:

#1 Self Care

Practicing mindfulness; acceptance; education about addiction; release anger; support network; Oxygen Mask Theory (Take care of yourself first or you won’t be able to take care of others.)

#2 Form a Recovery Team

The Family Recovery Team includes family members, sponsor, coach, or friends—anyone committed to abstinence to enable recovery for the family.

#3 Work a Family Recovery Action Plan (FRAP)

Just as the addict builds a personal recovery action plan, family members build a Family Recovery Action Plan as their recovery program. The FRAP includes a Recovery Contract for remaining abstinent, accountability through such means as drug screens; identifying recovery triggers; listing values and committed actions; forming a family mission statement; stating boundaries and identifying rewards/consequences. The FRAP is a living document that serves as a map to recovery-land.

#4 Build Recovery Skills

Learn effective communication skills, relationship skills, parenting skills, time management skills through family workshops, counseling, coaching, and support groups.

#5 Live a Recovery Lifestyle

A recovery lifestyle is identified as healthy behaviors that promote abstinence and recovery. Family meetings, game night, date night, support groups, spirituality, and aftercare that are values-driven; living a healthy, balanced lifestyle are a few of the behaviors that promote recovery and beyond.

Family Mini-Intervention

Step 1: Breathe

Take good self care—you will need to bring your best self to take action against the chemical that has invaded your family.

Use calming breaths to reduce stress and be able to think logically.

Step 2: Observe objectively

Look at your Loved One’s behavior through the lens of a video camera: what do you hear and see with no assumptions.

Step 3: Write it down.

Writing helps take out the judgements and the negativity

Writing it down will help you and your Loved One see patterns.

Step 4: Script your response to the behaviors

Lovingly write out what you intend to say. Take time to think it through. Then, put it away and wait for the right time to deliver your message.

Step 5: Feedback your observations and decisions

  • Take out the anger, replace with loving kindness
  • Focus on the objective facts
  • Express your concerns
  • State your boundaries