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How to Handle Unsupportive Family in Recovery


When someone goes to rehab, it is typically done out of necessity. The addiction in question has spiraled out of control, and there could be damage done to important relationships as a result. While pursuing that care is an incredibly courageous act, it does not erase the impact that can be made by this disease and the actions that were taken while under the influence. Recovery is a journey for all involved, not only the person suffering from the addiction. So if you find yourself grappling with a seemingly unsupportive family during your stay, Banyan Massachusetts is offering some tips to handle the situation as you work to repair these relationships and achieve sobriety. 

Tips for Dealing With Unsupportive Family Members and Friends 

While every situation is different, there are still important steps that can be taken to help maintain our own wellness in the face of familial conflict. Just as we are entitled to our own feelings, so are those that the addiction in question has directly affected. Below are some pointers to help you manage these situations while still prioritizing your success in recovery. 

Avoid Conflict 

Drug addiction can lead people to do things to those they care about that they normally would not. It is not uncommon for those to hold onto these negative experiences, whether it is because they are holding a grudge or are genuinely struggling to come to terms with the situation at hand. Regardless, if someone you have hurt tries to confront you, it is crucial to avoid engaging in hostile conversations. This can be extremely triggering and can even result in a relapse in some cases. This is why it is important that you are both able to sit down and have a productive conversation that is healthy for everyone involved. 

Should there still be hostility despite efforts to patch up the relationships, professional family therapy sessions could be a useful tool. This provides a controlled, mediated setting that can hopefully lead to a productive conversation as opposed to more conflict. Luckily, our Massachusetts addiction treatment center offers family programs to do just that. 

Give Someone Space That Needs It  

If you find that there is still hostility, giving your loved one space could be necessary. Although it may not seem ideal, it will give them time to properly think through their feelings until they are able to produce a clearer head and more rational approach to the situation. That being said, there is still the possibility that this time won’t be enough to initially resolve things. At that point, you may need to consider that there has been significant damage done and that the relationship may not be the same as it once was.  

Hopefully, as time goes on, they may be able to see the serious effort you are contributing to your recovery and make amends, allowing them to open back up to the possibility of reconciliation. Practicing patience can make or break the situation. 

Focus On Yourself  

Ultimately, the goal of recovery is to heal for yourself, not for other people. It can seem preferable to focus on the needs of those you care about, but if you are consistently prioritizing the needs of another, it is far less likely that you will get what you need out of your rehab stay. Hopefully, if you focus on implementing better habits into your daily routine, you will learn how to properly address the stressor that leads you to abuse drugs or alcohol in the first place. Your friends and family should be able to recognize this. You may even find that your relationships have healed themselves over time. 

Prioritize Relationship Building 

It is entirely too easy to focus on what we don’t have as opposed to what we do have. Although it may seem obvious to pine for the approval of friends and family during such a vulnerable time, it is not worth it to waste your energy on a currently lost cause. There are so many people that you will meet during this experience who genuinely wish to see you succeed. Make it a point to prioritize relationship building because it is these bonds that will play a part in upholding your newfound sobriety upon completion of rehab. These are the people who will help to hold you accountable in the face of temptation.  

Learn How to Practice Acceptance  

Practicing acceptance is one of the biggest hurdles that many in recovery face. But if you find that an unsupportive family continues to be what holds you back from making progress, practicing acceptance of the things we cannot change can make a world of difference. Life is not going to be the same when you leave rehab as it was when you entered it. That is kind of the whole point, isn’t it, though? Learning how to be open to the changes in life that come with personal development can be difficult but transformative. 

Get Massachusetts Addiction Treatment With Banyan 

Should you decide that you are ready to take steps forward to a better, sober future, we implore you to do so with Banyan. Our team of clinical professionals offers a variety of therapy programs that can address all present and underlying issues that are contributing to your condition. Our facilities offer treatment for a number of different addictions and can help you achieve recovery with the right mindset and drive.  

To learn more about the levels of care available at our drug rehab in Massachusetts, call Banyan at 888-280-4763 today. 


Related Reading: 

Alcoholism & Family Dynamics: A Closer Look at Alcoholic Family Roles 

How to Tell Your Family You’re Sober 

Alyssa, Director of Digital Marketing
Alyssa, Director of Digital Marketing
Alyssa is the National Director of Digital Marketing and is responsible for a multitude of integrated campaigns and events in the behavioral health and addictions field. All articles have been written by Alyssa and medically reviewed by our Chief Medical Officer, Dr. Darrin Mangiacarne.
How to Handle Unsupportive Family in Recovery
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