One of the questions that people frequently ask us is how they can best support their loved one who is participating in our program. Many people don’t know how to support their loved ones during their journey to recovery aside from having them participate in our program. And while that is definitely a great thing to do, it is important that family members and close friends realize that they also play an important role in the recovering person’s progress. So, to answer that question, here are a few of our suggestions as to how you can help and support your friend or family member through treatment.
Be There for Them
First and foremost, it is vitally important that you be there for them. This is always the first step. When we say “be there for them,” we’re not just talking about being physically present; we’re also talking about being mentally and emotionally there for them as well. Being there for a loved one who is undergoing treatment involves letting them know that no matter what issues or challenges they are facing, you will support them.
This advice is given frequently but is always worth repeating: aside from being there for them, listening to them is one of the most important things you can do. When it comes down to it, they are the only ones who understand exactly what they are going through, and that can make recovery feel like a lonely process. When you take the time to listen to what they have to say about their struggles and their journey to better health, you are building a bridge between the two of you that will help them feel like they aren’t alone in their journey after all.
Spread the Love
A little bit of love can go a long way for a person who is undergoing treatment. Be it a kind word, hand-written note, a gesture of service or any other act of service, showing a little love to the person can give them the strength to continue even when they feel like giving up. Besides, frequently reminding them how much you love and appreciate them is a good habit to get into whether they’re in treatment or not.
Set and Enforce Boundaries
These boundaries include mental and emotional boundaries for yourself and the other person, as well as behavioral boundaries for them. There is a difference between supporting the person and enabling them, and that difference often lies in how effectively you set and enforce rules. Make it clear to them which behaviors are not acceptable and what will happen if they choose to participate in unhealthy behaviors.