Affected by a Loved One’s Addiction? “Prodependence” is a Must Read – Scott Brassart

 Dr. Robert Weiss is widely known for his therapeutic work and his books about addiction, in particular sex, porn, and love addiction. His latest book, Prodependence: Moving Beyond Codependency, is an extension of these efforts, focusing on the ways in which therapists (and the public) view and treat not just addicts, but spouses and family members of addicts. For more than three decades, the primary treatment and recovery model for loved ones of addicts has been codependence, which typically labels efforts to help an addicted or otherwise struggling loved one as enmeshed and enabling. Then, the caregiving family member is identified as codependent and told that he or she needs to “detach with love” or nothing will ever get better. To a person who loves and cares for an addict, the codependence model feels like they’re being blamed and shamed for someone else’s problem. And that doesn’t make a lot… Continue reading

Whether or Not Our Loved One Finds Recovery – Jackie Stein

Loving someone who has a problem with drugs or alcohol is life changing for the entire family.  Those of us who have been down this road know that we have spent huge chunks of time and energy trying to help and/or fix our loved one.  We can become obsessive.  In fact, our loved one can become OUR addiction.  We feel a wide range of emotions – mostly fear and anxiety, but sometimes also anger at what the disease is doing to our loved one and in fact, to the whole family.  We worry ourselves to the point of becoming physically ill.  In many cases, we make little or no time to take care of ourselves. At some point most of us figure out that without help, nothing will change in the family.  There are no guarantees that our loved ones will find recovery.  They might go in and out of… Continue reading

Your Loved One’s Alcohol Problem and CRAFT (An Intervention You’ve Never Heard Of) – By Lee Weber

  In this article you will learn to recognize Alcohol Use Disorder for yourself or a loved one. Then, know how to approach it and where to seek help using CRAFT, the Community Reinforcement and Family Training method. Here, we explain the symptoms, the condition, and where you can turn for help. Read and learn more. The Definition of a “Problem” Hangovers. Missing social, work, or school obligations after a party. Regretful behavior. All of these come with drinking. But are they signs of a drinking “problem”? By definition, unhealthy alcohol use includes any alcohol use that puts your health or safety at risk or causes other alcohol-related problems. If your loved one’s pattern of drinking results in repeated significant distress and problem functioning in his/her daily life, then they likely need professional help. Technically, Alcohol Use Disorder is a pattern of drinking that involves problems with controlling alcohol intake.… Continue reading

Working on Ourselves and Our Relationships in the New Year – By Jackie Stein

  As we begin 2018, many of us seek to engage in new and healthy behaviors.  We plan to eat better and sleep better.  We plan to give up cigarettes or video games.  We also say we want to repair our relationships with our family members who are suffering from substance use disorders (SUDs). We know how to eat better and sleep better – we give up foods that are unhealthy and we drink lots of water.  We stop drinking caffeine in the evening and turn off our electronics at least an hour before bedtime.  We have tools for giving up cigarettes, unhealthy eating and video games, including medications and 12 step programs. Similarly, there are tools to aid and support us as we try to develop a healthy program for living with our loved ones.  That program involves tools and programs to both help our loved ones and repair… Continue reading

The Importance of Effective Listening When Dealing With an Addicted Loved One – By Jackie Stein

  Stephen Covey is said to have communicated the following concept: “Most people do not listen with the intent to understand; they listen with the intent to reply.” In my opinion, truer words were never spoken.  Effective listening is a skill to develop where the listener is truly doing so with the intent to understand what is being conveyed.  In the life of a family dealing with addiction, effective listening is one of the more important skills that we can use to help us to communicate effectively with our loved one and with each other. As many of you know, I am a Balm© Family Recovery Life Coach, but before beginning my coaching career, I was a family member with an addicted loved one who attended the BALM© Comprehensive Family Program. One of the most important skills I learned as a family member of an addicted loved one and continue… Continue reading