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Family Guidance Blog

September 2014 Marks 25th Annual National Recovery Month

Mental health 18National Recovery Month is a month-long push toward greater community awareness on issues of behavioral health. Mental health is a key component in a person’s overall health. It is nearly impossible to divide physical well-being and positive mental health. Ignore your mental wellness and physical as well as psychological conditions may worsen.

However, the flip side is also true: care for your behavioral health and you can reap positive benefits in all areas of living. During September, behavioral health providers across the country share some of their many stories of prevention, treatment and recovery success.

This year, National Recovery Month celebrates 25 years of shared successes. Behavioral health providers want more community members to be aware that their services are available to all. Individuals who have overcome substance use are certainly worth recognizing and celebrating, but Recovery Month encompasses recovery on a broader scale.

People overcome struggles with depression and anxiety every day because they took the time to seek out help. Other chronic conditions can be successfully managed so that individuals may live full and satisfying lives. Treatment works. In many instances, preventive care can help people avoid some of these struggles altogether.

The national Substance Abuse and Mental Health Services Administration (SAMHSA) wants Americans to know that you can take charge of your mental health in the same way as you do your physical health. Pay attention to symptoms and get help if you suspect something isn’t as it should be. For those who already struggle, treatment can lead to the freedom of recovery.

Here in St Joseph, Family Guidance Center opens its doors day after day to community members concerned about a wide selection of behavioral health issues. Whether you have been unable to shake feelings of sadness and hopelessness for several weeks or have been struggling with addiction to substances for months or even years, hope is there. Treatment works. Call today. We have 25 years of success stories to share with you.

The Work of Recovery Includes Rebuilding Trust in Damaged Relationships

Addiction takes a toll on several fronts. It usually takes a physical toll on the person who uses. It often takes a monetary toll on the person and even the family. It also exacts a toll in terms of harmed relationships. Recovery involves rebuilding health on all fronts where damage has been done, but repair doesn’t come evenly on every side.

The person who is still in the early stages of recovery is regaining physical health and wellness. Cessation from substance use and new, healthier living choices combine to restore the person physically. A healthier body frequently results in an improved mental or emotional outlook as well.

Similarly, whereas the person may once have been spending all their available cash to fund their addiction, recovery means that those finances are no longer being misdirected and monetary stability can be achieved. Some kind of positive progress can be seen relatively soon.

What usually takes longer is the work of rebuilding trust in damaged relationships. It’s important for theRecovery 1 person in recovery to realize that slow-forming trust is not the same thing as slowly granted forgiveness. Trust is a separate issue. Forgiveness is given but trust usually needs to be earned – and that takes time.

Just how much time will be needed to restore trust in a damaged relationship varies from person to person. The injured party has no reason to grant immediate trust. One expert has likened the distrust created by addiction to the building of a brick wall between two people. Repairing the trust is comparable to tearing down that wall brick by brick. It is a tedious but rewarding process.

Whatever side of the recovery road you are travelling, it helps to have support. Family Guidance can offer that support to people journeying out of addiction as well as the loved ones trying to give trust once more. Repairing damaged relationships takes work on both sides of the wall. Call Family Guidance today and get the support needed to stay committed to the job of bringing that wall down.

Recovery From Addiction/Alcoholism is a Family Affair

When a person is ill, they rarely suffer alone. Family members feel the pain, fear, loss and weariness thatRecovery 2 come with a loved one’s illness. The same is true when one member of the family has an addiction – everyone in the family is affected.

If someone in your family is struggling with addiction to alcohol or drugs, their situation impacts the entire group. Ultimately, recovery is up to them, but there are ways a family can help both themselves and the one they love.

1. Become Educated
You may think that because you’ve lived it, you already know all there is to know about addiction to alcohol or drug or what is needed for recovery, but that isn’t the case. Ask your doctor for information and read other reputable sources to educate yourself about the facts.

2. Find Support
It’s easy to blame yourself when a loved one’s life starts to come unraveled. Discouragement and shame can lead you to retreat from others. What you really need is a support network where you can find encouragement, hope and a reminder that you aren’t alone or responsible (for the person’s addiction or recovery).

3. Wait Patiently
Your loved one’s addiction to alcohol or drugs didn’t form in a day and recovery won’t arrive overnight. Be patient as the person works through the necessary steps. There will be times when it looks like things have stalled or are even temporarily moving backwards. Stay committed to your loved one and speak positively about your confidence in them. Recovery takes time and comes in fits and starts, but hope is a powerful tool.

If you are looking for a place where your loved one can begin their journey to recovery or if you are looking for somewhere to find the support and encouragement you need, come and visit Family Guidance. Family Guidance offers all types of addiction recovery services including family support groups.

Celebrating Recovery is an Important Part of Addiction Recovery

Overcoming addiction takes courage to face your problems and decide you will learn to handle them in a different way. It usually means making changes within yourself and even in your surroundings. That is why important mile markers on the road to addiction recovery deserve to be celebrated.

You can start small. Celebrate one full day of recovery without drugs or alcohol. Your family or yourRecovery 1 friends may give you a balloon or take you out for ice cream sundaes to mark the day, but that first day is worth noting!

There are many recovery milestones worth celebrating – one week, one month, one year, the first day back at work or school… the list goes on. It is important to take the time to acknowledge the progress you are making with the people around you. If you are hesitant, it could be that you are afraid of letting people down (including yourself) but celebrating milestones actually makes it easier to succeed on the road ahead.

Here are some ways to reward yourself and others for all the progress you’ve made so far:

  1. If you are part of a support group, be sure to attend the recovery celebration events. Groups like Alcoholics Anonymous are good about acknowledging steps along the way. Take their cue and celebrate your milestones.
  2. Reward yourself with something good for you. It could be a shopping trip, a nice dinner out, a weekend getaway or a cooking class with a friend.
  3. Celebrate your sober anniversary. Make it a big event with the people closest to you. Have cake or whatever food makes it special. This is a good chance to tell the people around you thank you for the help they give you through the year.

If you are ready to start out on this journey of recovering from addiction, contact the professionals at Family Guidance. Before you know it, you could be celebrating your very own milestones of success.

Celebrating the New Year When You’re in Recovery

During the New Year season it can feel like the whole world is celebrating. A person living in recovery from alcohol dependency or alcohol addiction may feel strong temptation to have just one drink on this one special night because they don’t want to feel so alone.

The truth is that not everyone is drinking on New Year’s Eve and a person with alcohol dependency or addiction can rarely stop with just one drink. Instead, all the memories of past New Year’s celebrations will tempt them to re-live the pleasures of years gone by.

It’s important for the person in recovery to deal with this ahead of time. There may be fun memories, but that is not the whole story. It’s vital to not romanticize past drinking. It is also important to develop a plan before you attend a New Year’s Eve party.

Recovery 2Parties often mean mingling with people who drink, and perhaps even those who used to participate with you. Old friends who still consume alcohol may try to pressure the one in recovery to be part of the gang once more. A firm and repeated “no” is usually all that is needed, but it’s important to be prepared. This is a time to make use of a sponsor or sober companion. Take that person with you if you must go to a party where alcohol will be served.

It can be helpful to attend extra support group meetings around New Year’s. Staying focused on the prize of freedom from alcohol addiction or dependence can be the motivation for making better decisions. Family Guidance Center offers professional help at Addiction Treatment Services, including group and individual help on a flexible schedule. Call them and become part of a group now before the season gets in full swing.

And remember, there are plenty of people who will be celebrating the start of the New Year without alcohol. Join with them to ring in the New Year and maintain your focus on a high-quality, addiction-free life.