Families may vary depending on their cultural background and belief systems, as well as the behaviors of individual family members. Even families whose members are spread throughout the country remain connected emotionally with the ability to impact other members with positive or negative behaviors, relates the U.S. National Library of Medicine.
Family therapy is a pivotal part of the intervention process and the subsequent rehabilitation that occurs. The ability to recognize family behavioral patterns and how each member affects the unit as a whole gives addictions counselors and professional interventionists the opportunity to work with or around family dynamics in an effort to get help for the individual who’s abusing drugs or alcohol.
Each Family is Unique, & so is Each Family Intervention
Family dynamics can be a bone of contention, confirms Psychology Today, causing many individuals to feel that they’re at their wit’s end with another family member. Each person in the family unit is unique, with their own behavioral patterns, personality and beliefs. Altogether, you may gel or clash. But when you seek help for yourself or a loved one with substance abuse problems, family dynamics must be considered so they don’t end up getting in the way.
Because of this, it is important that any professional intervention services provider takes note of the family dynamics, as well as the family relationships. In order to have an organized intervention plan that leads the loved one to receiving treatment, it is important to go over family history, family trends, and other personal information with the professional interventionist. When it comes to the intervention process, family therapy is essential in creating an environment of patience and of understanding.
The Ripple Effect of Family Dynamics
The impact of family dynamism is that any changes in the family as a whole (such as divorce, illness or death) or individual changes (such as job loss or addiction) are felt throughout the family and by the individual. The U.S. Library of Medicine explains the concept of family causality.
Simply stated, when an individual family member changes her behavior, others in the family will change as a result. These initial changes can also cause further changes down the road. For this reason, family therapy before, during and after a crisis intervention is crucial to successful recovery.
Addressing Individual Members and the Entire Family Unit
Addiction impacts the family as a unit, as well as impacting each member individually. A person who’s succumbed to addiction is not likely to admit to the impact their behavior has on the rest of the family, but this impact will be felt profoundly by parents, siblings, spouses and children. Both ends of family dynamism are addressed in family therapy.
Through counseling, families can get at the root of problematic behaviors. They can find out how to respond more appropriately when talking with a member who’s abusing alcohol or drugs. As a family works together with a counselor in preparation of an intervention, it’s beneficial for them to gain new skills, knowledge and understanding of how past behavioral patterns have caused problems. These behaviors can be replaced with new techniques that bring about better consequences, such as getting a loved one help.
Using Knowledge of Family Dynamics and Family Therapy for Crisis Interventions
According to the National Institute on Drug Abuse, Family Behavior Therapy is used for crisis interventions and recovery to help address the addiction, as well as co-occurring family problems. As family members learn new behavioral strategies that will help them cope with and assist an addicted loved one, they also apply these strategies during the family intervention and the family counseling.
Family involvement is an important part of the intervention process and recovery. The sooner you incorporate it into your efforts to help an addicted family member, the sooner the entire family unit will benefit from the positive changes that occur in their dynamics.