Enthusiastic Sobriety And Struggling Parents

By the time a parent realizes they have a  child with a drug and alcohol problem it is usually past the point of experimentation. There are exceptions, but in most cases a person who gets high doesn’t get caught until he or she gets sloppy. This is usually after the problem is firmly established. Often, these individual’s parents have been struggling for years to determine what went wrong, how it happened, and who or what is to blame.

Enthusiastic Sobriety and Struggling Parents

First Things First

Enthusiastic sobriety programs firmly believe that until a young person is actually sober it is impossible to accurately identify what issues are behind the drug and alcohol abuse. Most people who choose to use and abuse chemicals have problems in need of resolution. The reality is that once a drug abuser is abstinent the drug problem is resolved. The issue is then maintenance of this sober life and resolution of the root troubles. Where most people fall apart is in the unwillingness to delve into the causes and conditions of the problem. When people try to attack the source (underlying issues) first, the chances for an individual to actually stay sober are very low. It requires a tremendous amount of patience to allow a young person in treatment the needed time to repair damaged relationships and atrophied coping mechanisms.

The Solution 

First of all it is vital to understand why people get high in the first place. It is not necessarily to escape reality or run away from feelings of discomfort. People abuse drugs and alcohol because it feels good. Escape and avoidance are by-products of substance abuse but are rarely the conscious motivator to begin using. The problem for people with drug and alcohol problems is that emotional maturation stops at the onset of habitual drug and alcohol abuse. Therefore in recovery  actually staying soberhas to be priority number one. Not only that, the sober lifestyle must have pay-offs:

  • it has to be fun
  • it has to offer the opportunity for friendship
  • the person in recovery must see a viable solution

Without abstinence an addict or alcoholic will not be able to deal with any underlying emotional issues. Counseling and therapy are important but should not take precedence over sobriety. Make sure the young person can wrap his or her head around the possibility of recovery. Fun, friends, and an improved life reach a teenager where he or she lives. Maturity will come in time.

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About the Author

Clint Stonebraker has worked in the substance abuse treatment field since 1987 and has been the owner of The Insight Program since 1993. Clint Stonebraker has overseen the expansion of Insight into Greensboro, Charlotte, and Raleigh North Carolina as well as growth in the Atlanta area. Clint is committed to providing quality care to individuals and families affected by substance abuse.