Having a Tough Conversation About Rehab
Helping convince someone you care about to go to rehab can be a true challenge. When they don’t recognize the gravity of their situation, it can feel like you’re talking to a wall. However, once enough is enough and something has to change, it is vital that you take swift action so that you can get your loved one the care that they need and deserve.
While you might have some resolve, you will need to get the person with the drug addiction or alcohol use disorder to move in the right direction. Here are a few effective ways to help a loved one get treatment for substance abuse.
1. Don’t Wait for them to hit “Rock Bottom”
It is a common misconception that a person needs to hit rock bottom before getting help. The truth is that anyone with a substance use disorder has probably experienced some uncomfortable and even painful consequences of substance abuse. If you suspect that your loved one has a problem with drug or alcohol abuse, don’t wait to speak to them.
2. Coming from a Place of Compassion
In some instances, a person’s ‘rock bottom; could be their loved one needing to speak to them about their drinking or substance use, and can serve as the needed impetus for seeking treatment. Although more often, words of concern will be met with denial, it is still important that your friend or loved one know that you are speaking to them from a place of compassion and genuine hope that they get help.
While it is true that you may be very frustrated and even angry at a friend or loved one whose substance use has affected you (and them) negatively, for the purposes of this conversation, especially in a one on one setting, it can crucial to bring your concern and feelings of love to the fore.
3. Consider an Intervention with Loved Ones
If you think that your loved one is in denial about their substance use, it might be time to plan an intervention. This is not something that you want to do on the spur of the moment since only carefully planned interventions are the most successful. If you do stage an intervention, make sure to give your loved one some options for addiction treatment in the process.
4. Evaluate a Professional Interventionist
Whether through a referral from our Admissions department at Circle of Hope, or through a different source, consider retaining the services of a professional interventionist if you feel there is the potential for conflict of aggression on the part of your loved one.
In the case of a spouse or partner with a substance use disorder, the presence of an outside party can help defuse the tensions related to codependency and poor communication that can develop in couples (and their extended families) that have lived with excessive drinking or drug abuse in their households for an extended period.
For a loved ones’ addiction, it can make sense to seek professional help when possible, since their counsel can prove invaluable to indicate the type of treatment (inpatient vs outpatient programs), setting (drug rehab, alcohol rehab, dual diagnosis specialization, and more), among other concerns that can often prove confusing to those outside the field.
5. Avoid Blaming Statements
When speaking to a loved one about going to rehab, don’t belittle and blame them. Speaking negatively about them can drive them away. Avoid using “you” statements and, instead, let them know how their behavior makes you feel. In other words, use “I” statements, such as, “I am concerned for your safety.”
Other methods can include using statements, such as “when you, I…” that let them know how you feel without directly ‘attacking’ or placing the blame on someone who is likely going through a difficult time themselves.
6. Get Educated
People who are in denial love to argue. You might be told that you do not know what you are talking about or that you are overreacting. The first action you can take to counter this is to learn as much as possible about addiction. Next, let your loved one know that you do not know everything, but that you care about them and are concerned about their safety.
Other aspects to consider when thinking about speaking to a loved one about rehab are the levels of addiction care and the quality of the rehab itself. Many people think of rehab as punitive, a punishment for having done something shameful. This harmful stigma couldn’t be further from the truth, and at Circle of Hope Treatment our luxury rehab setting and our dedicated clinicians and staff make this very clear.
Each client to step through our doors is given a custom treatment plan that involves their feedback and takes into account their history of substance use, desired goals from rehab, and any underlying causes for their behavior.
7. Ask Your Loved One to Attend
You don’t need to convince a loved one that they have a substance use disorder in order to convince them to go to rehab. The important thing is convincing them to take the action. Instead of continuing to argue semantics with them, ask them to give it a try, maybe as a gift to you. Let them know that it would give you the greatest peace of mind knowing that they are safe and taking this important step.
If you would like support in asking a loved one to attend, our Admissions team can provide guidance, and other online resources including a Surgeon General’s report on the effectiveness of an early intervention on substance use and alcohol use disorders, and a ton of helpful guidance on achieving desired outcomes.
8. Remove the Fear About Detox
Many people who are addicted to alcohol or drugs have tried to quit or cut back in the past. During these attempts, they’ve likely experienced some uncomfortable withdrawal symptoms. Your loved one will do just about anything to avoid again. When you suggest that they get addiction treatment, let them know that they can go to a facility that offers medically supervised detox, that can take care of their physical and mental needs with 24-hour care.
9. Get Specific about Their Treatment
A final effective tactic can be akin to providing your loved one with a vision for their healthy future, along with the steps to take to get there. In the confusion and hopelessness of active addiction, it can sometimes be forgotten how effective residential treatment can be, and at a luxury facility like Circle of Hope, comfortable as well. Though there will be difficult moments and work to be done, if your loved one commits themselves to treatment with us, our aftercare and Alumni program will provide the support for lasting recovery.
It might seem like an overwhelming task to get a loved one into alcohol and drug treatment programs, but delaying taking action can result in an even more dire situation. When your friend or family member is ready to commit to the journey to recovery, Circle of Hope will be there to help.
Please reach out now to our dedicated Admission team to discuss your loved one’s situation and how we can help.
Even if you just want to talk to experts on addiction, the call will ease the weight on your shoulders, and provide you with even more options, so give us a ring now, any time of day or night.