Can Close Friends Be Brought into the Family Program During Treatment?

Addiction treatment centers often welcome you to invite people to visit with you and participate in certain parts of the program. If you’ve never been to treatment before, then the prospect of having your loved ones involved in your care might help you feel more supported.

While it is fun to spend time with the people you care about, your treatment team encourages their involvement because they know that it gives you support at home that prevents relapse. Asking about whether or not your close friends can be brought into the family program during treatment is a good sign that you are getting deeper into planning for your stay. Although the guidelines can vary among treatment centers, you’ll find that most will allow close friends to be involved provided that they meet certain requirements.

How Does the Family Program Work in Addiction Treatment?

Family programs are typically designed to help bring a person’s inner circle closer together so that they can provide support. During the hardest days of your addiction, your loved ones have likely faced challenges that have resulted in issues such as broken trust. Your family members might also have lots of questions about addiction, your underlying mental health conditions and how to be supportive once you return home.

Most family programs offer group therapy sessions that help family members begin the process of healing. Your sessions might take place with other people in the addiction center, or they could focus solely on your individual family’s needs. Either way, the program is meant to help you all bond while doing the tough work that comes with healing from addiction.

When Would a Close Friend Count as a Family Member?

For many people, friends serve as an extension of their family. Or, your close friend might live with you and serve in roles that even your blood relatives couldn’t fulfill. Usually, an addiction treatment center will recommend sticking to your blood relatives for family programs.

However, close friends are sometimes welcomed under certain circumstances. When you are thinking about inviting a close friend to participate in your treatment program, it helps to ask these questions to determine if they are a good fit.

  • Do they live with you or spend large amounts of time in your home?
  • Are they capable of supporting your sobriety?
  • Do you have conflicts with them that need to get resolved?
  • How much of an influence do they have on your life?
  • Do you consider them to be more like family than just an acquaintance?
  • Are they willing to serve as a positive contributor in the treatment community?

Having a close friend is an asset during your treatment. If your friend qualifies as being close enough to participate in your family program, then you’ll want to make sure that they are committed to attending the sessions. If they do, then you can look forward to having them be a strong supporter throughout your recovery.

How Does Addiction Treatment Improve Relationships?

The reason why family programs are so important in rehab is that you need to know that you are surrounded by support. In some cases, you might need to work through difficult emotional responses to certain people. If you’ve had a strained relationship with a parent, child or other close relative, then working things out with the help of a therapist might be your best hope for improving your relationship.

The same can also be true of close friends. During the time that you were using drugs or alcohol, you might have done things that hurt your best friend or broke their trust. This is especially possible if you lived together as a family might, and they saw first-hand how your addiction was damaging to the people in your life.

As you work your way through addiction treatment, you can expect for your counselors to help guide you through mending your relationships. The process will require some hard work on your part, but the results are worth it when you can enjoy feeling close to your family and friends again. Do you have other questions about addiction treatment? Contact us today at 844-639-8371, and we’ll help you learn how to cultivate closer relationships in a family program at an addiction treatment center.

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