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How family therapy supports addiction recovery

We understand the impact that addiction can have on an entire family.  Arguments, deceitful behaviour, distrust, financial worries and health concerns can all be experienced.

At Priory Hospital Woking and a number of our other sites offering addiction treatment, we make sure that family members over the age of 18 are well supported throughout the recovery journey. With our support, we help families to establish an environment where trust and communication can flourish, so that everyone involved can explore emotions and support one another throughout the experience.

As part of our Addiction Treatment Programmes, we offer family therapy sessions where family members, including the person dealing with an addiction, attends. We also have Family Support Groups, where those close to someone with an addiction have the opportunity to talk to others who have gone through similar experiences.

Understanding our family therapy sessions

Pamela Roberts, Addiction Programme Manager at Priory Hospital Woking says: “Family participation in treatment is crucial to the healing of the family and addicted person. It is for this reason that we strongly encourage family members to attend this integral part of the treatment process.”

Family support is not about finding a cause or assigning blame. It is an opportunity to find new ways of supporting one another and organising solutions for life going forward.

All family members are encouraged to open up and have an honest dialogue about the challenges that they have faced as a result of the addiction. You also get to look at the impact that the addiction has had on the family unit.

Everyone’s feelings, experiences and issues are explored to help people understand different perspectives.  As all family members are likely to experience change during the treatment process, it can also be a good opportunity to talk about the future.

Through these sessions, you are able to develop a strong understanding of others’ feelings and points of view. In turn, this can help you to find ways to support one another based on each person’s needs.

What will family sessions be like?

The first session will typically take place after several days of treatment have been completed, and another will be held part way through the treatment journey. The sessions typically last for an hour, and are either facilitated by a family therapist or a specialist Addiction Treatment Programme therapist.

It is important to remember that family sessions are not a ‘visit’. Instead, it is a time for you to work together, strengthen your relationship and join efforts for family healing.

The dynamics of the family will be respected and taken into consideration when organising sessions in order to help the family get the most they can from their time.

Our support groups for family members

After your family member has completed their treatment plan and you start to navigate life with someone in recovery, our Family Support Groups give you the opportunity to receive support from others who have had similar experiences. 

This group, which is exclusively for the family members of those in recovery, is available to you for 12 months, following on from the 28 days of treatment your family member will have received. During this time, you have the opportunity to talk about the impact that the addiction has had on yourself and your family, and discuss the changes that you experience as the family moves into recovery and as the person you care about goes through their own recovery.  

Pamela Roberts also says: “Early recovery is a changeable time and this group provides a forum for educational and experiential support. There will be opportunities to discuss general concerns and questions you may have along with other family members who may have had similar experiences.”

If you would like to find out more about our addiction treatment programme, please click here. You will be able to find out more about our service as well as our ethos. 

This page was reviewed by Pamela Roberts, Addictions Programme Manager at Priory Hospital Woking, in January 2019, and is scheduled to be reviewed again in January 2021.

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For details of how Priory can provide you with assistance regarding addiction treatment and rehabilitation, please call 0800 144 8969 or click here to book a FREE ADDICTION ASSESSMENT. For professionals looking to make a referral, please click here

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