How Families Cope with Inpatient Treatment Programs

When a loved one is hospitalized for any reason, it is a stressful time for the family. In most circumstances, the patient is allowed to have visitors any time that’s reasonable. For those families dealing with someone addicted to drugs or alcohol, the hospitalization may seem like a blessing. The family has probably gone through a substantial amount of time dealing with unpredictable behavior of the drug user. Having this freedom from the chaos is usually welcoming at first. At some point, the family will have to learn how to deal with their recovering loved one. It is not uncommon for families to seek therapy while going through this difficult time.

The first thing a family needs to know is that their loved one is in good hands. A team of professionals is caring for him or her. Your loved one is not under house arrest and hasn’t been kidnapped, although it may feel that way at first. Medical information will not be given to family members; the patient will have to do that personally. The family should also know that access to your loved one will be restricted, especially during the beginning of the treatment. Inpatient facilities try to limit as much contact with the outside world as possible. Most likely there will be no access to newspapers, TV or radio either.

At some point during the recovery program, the family will become involved. Participation allows family interactions to be observed and the family learns about addiction and how to help the patient have a successful recovery. Having the support of their family makes the recovery process more beneficial for everyone.


N.A. “Coping With Having a Family Member in Alcohol or Drug Rehab.” (Website). (2015).
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