It is almost with a nervous anticipation I post this type of question, but I have never been shy or hesitant before.
As my son progresses in his recovery, even though it is in a highly structured environment I begin to contemplate next steps. What does support look like for an addict by their parents and loved ones? Support, enabling, love how does this all differ; and with an illness like this what really does help?
As I have struggled to accept addiction as a disease and not just a weakness of character I have wrestled with what is the role of a father or parents.
Treat me like a normal person is what I have heard from others suffering from other serious diseases. “Do for me only what I cannot do for myself.” This is what I have heard from others I have been close to suffering from diseases such as; cancer, arthritis, heart disease and other such debilitating diseases. These are probably wise words to apply to a recovering addict too, but I don’t know. This disease is not like diseases I have been exposed to in my past and certainly not something in which I have had close experience within my family.
I equate this to a homecoming, even though he will not be coming back to the family home, this seems equal to someone being released from a hospital after a long-term cancer treatment or something. Nothing is the same as before. Preparing the “home”, getting a healing attitude ingrained and preparation for caregivers. How does this work for an addict?
Guess maybe this goes to the control by dad but I seldom ever do anything without a plan. When I plan I prepare. I’m a firm believer success at anything is no accident and planning must be thorough to be successful. What stresses me is I know addicts especially those in the early stages of recovery are pretty much incapable of implementing a plan much beyond day by day. So my plan must be structured for me, but I have to recognize that the whole purpose of my plan is to provide support to one that is ill.
I’m not even sure I am asking the right questions but this is what has been weighing on my mind lately. This damn thing is awfully hard to flowchart.