A person who is struggling or has struggled with addiction in the past has only one hope – that their children won’t have to go through the same thing. Unfortunately, there are many research studies that show that addiction is a lot more common in people who have addiction running in their families. The good news is that this isn’t a rule of thumb, and it is something that can be corrected. As a parent, you have an opportunity to prevent your child from inheriting your addiction – or at least try to. As a drug and alcohol rehab facility in Florida, we know which are the right steps that can aid in your effort to hopefully help your child lead an addiction-free life.
Why does addiction run in families?
For starters, let’s begin by busting any myths surrounding addiction and what it is. Addiction is a disease, and while it might begin by making a conscious choice to experiment with drugs and alcohol, its trajectory follows that of a disease. While there is nothing that you can do to permanently cure addiction as the cravings might remain for a long time, you can put your addiction under control. And putting it under control is more than enough to lead a free and fulfilling life.
There are two main reasons why the kids of those who are in and out of alcohol rehab facilities in Florida are more likely to become addicted themselves. The first reason has everything to do with genetics. While there isn’t a single gene that determines whether a person will become an addict, studies have shown that the predisposition for addiction can be passed down through DNA. Now, there is nothing that you can do to change your child’s genetics or influence them. But you can completely influence the second reason why addictions run in families.
The second reason has everything to do with one’s environment. Kids learn best by example, and you can teach them all the right lessons by lecturing them and it will still mean nothing unless you actually take the right actions. Children who are growing up in a household where one or two parents are addicts are going to encounter this type of behavior on a daily basis. Small children can’t differentiate right from wrong, which is why they will grow up thinking that addiction is nothing negative. After all, parents know best, right?
What happens if you have children after getting sober?
If you become a parent a few years after attending drug rehab in Boynton Beach, then there are good chances that you will provide your child with a great life. After all, who will be better to teach them about the dangers of addiction than you? However, if you have recently finished rehab and are still extremely sensitive, it might not be the best moment to become a parent. The reason for that is simple enough – you will probably need a lot of help from other people.
People who have just come out of recovery might need others to help them prepare their meals and keep them occupied. They also might have a problem finding good employment and providing for themselves. Don’t get us wrong – this is simply the normal path after recovery, and it is nothing to be ashamed of. However, such a situation might not be ideal for bringing a child into it.
Then again, when it comes to being a good (and sober) parent, the most important thing to have is the desire. If you are willing to be a good parent, then we have no doubt that you will make it by making enough effort. To help you out, we have prepared quite a few tips that will get you one step closer to your ultimate goal – preventing your child from inheriting your addiction.
How to prevent your child from inheriting your addiction?
As a parent, you have a lot of responsibility – but you also have a lot of power. By taking the right actions, you can greatly ensure that your child never has to go through a partial hospitalization program in Florida. Of course, your child is going to become their own person, and they will be able to make all the decisions for themselves. So if they decide to experiment with drugs and alcohol, there might be nothing that you can do to stop it. However, with the right actions taken now, you can do your best to make sure it doesn’t happen.
1. Become sober
There will be nothing that you can do to keep your child away from addiction if you are not sober yourself. We’ve already established that kids model our behavior, so you can’t expect them to model sobriety if you are not propagating it. That’s why the first step is the most difficult one for parents, as it entails becoming sober.
Depending on your addiction, you will be the perfect candidate for either Inpatient or Outpatient rehab in Florida. The latter is going to provide you with more free time that you can dedicate to your child. However, the latter is only possible if your addiction isn’t severe. If it is, then you will have to attend an Inpatient program and possibly be away from your family for a couple of months. While that will be hard for the entire family, you simply have to remember why you are doing it. The goal is to keep your child away from addiction, but it’s also to make your life better. After all, it’s your life that’s at stake too, not just your child’s.
2. Eliminate all substances from your home
This is a step that’s going to be helpful for your child, but also for you. After all, you are the one who is supposed to maintain sobriety and remain on the right path for a long time. That’s not going to be so easy to do if you are constantly in temptation. In fact, we will go as far as to say that it’s going to be impossible to remain sober for a long period of time if you are keeping drugs or alcohol in your home. And don’t even get us started on how detrimental that is going to be for your child’s health.
Keeping alcohol and drugs in your home will be dangerous no matter your child’s age. Small kids can ingest these substances out of curiosity, and they won’t know what they are doing. Older kids, on the other hand, will know exactly what they are doing. Teenagers are a group that oftentimes experiments with drugs and alcohol, in particular, so leaving these substances around the home is going to be a bad decision. Scratch that – it would be a disastrous decision.
Thus, as soon as you leave an alcohol or heroin rehab facility in Palm Beach, we suggest you comb through your house. Remove all traces of harmful substances and ban them altogether from entering your home. The last thing we want is for you to sabotage your own progress by being careless and leaving behind the things that should not be there.
3. Be honest and prevent your child from inheriting your addiction
Children understand a lot of what is going on, and they are usually more perceptive than it seems. Thus, even if you don’t want to talk about it, there’s a good chance that your child has already understood that you are struggling with substance abuse. Now, you can take one of the two possible approaches – deny it or own up to it.
Denying that you have spent some time in a crack cocaine rehab center in FL isn’t going to bring the results you are hoping for. Just because you are wishing it away doesn’t mean that it will actually go away. In fact, it’s going to have a completely counterproductive effect. On the other hand, you can actually use your addiction as an opportunity to impart some wisdom to your child.
As someone who has gone through it and experienced it, you are the perfect person to attest to the harmful effects of addiction. Be open to sharing details about how your addiction began, what was the lowest point, and what are the consequences that are left behind. Besides, as someone your child trusts and confides in, it is very likely that they will listen to you and what you are trying to say. That’s why we believe that you should be honest and take accountability for your addiction. Moreover, we advise you to have this conversation as soon as possible. Children are highly susceptible during their formative years. Don’t wait until they are late in their teen years to talk about addiction and its negative effects.
4. Be careful who you spend time with
We’ve already established that it’s very important to provide kids with a good example for them to model. Kids are like sponges, and they will mimic most of the things that they see, especially if they are in their formative years. That’s why it’s important to surround them with positive examples and good behaviors. Unfortunately, it’s not enough just for you to demonstrate that good behavior – they need to see it from other individuals in their environment. And while you can’t exactly affect what your child will see in school and in their friend group, you can control who comes and leaves your house.
If you know that one or more of your friends or family members are exhibiting behavior that is concerning and promotes addiction, it would be best to limit the exposure of your kids to them. Let’s say that a close family member is currently in a meth rehab facility in Boynton Beach. If they are careful about their health and they manage to get sober (and stay that way), then their presence will not be a disturbance for your child. However, if that same family member is constantly relapsing, then it would be wise to keep them away from your kid.
Of course, you won’t be able to fully avoid contact in most cases. Sitting at a few family dinners from time to time will probably not inflict too much damage. But seeing them on a regular basis could give your child the wrong idea. Don’t get us wrong – all people deserve love. It’s just about providing your impressionable child with the best example possible.
Most importantly, make sure to hand-pick your friends and the people you hang around with. Your social group should consist of people who are supporting your new lifestyle and are helping you to have sober fun. We know that the main point is to prevent your child from inheriting your addiction, but you also matter. In fact, it’s only when the parent is happy that the child will be able to be happy, too.
5. Develop good habits to prevent your child from inheriting your addiction
The last thing you want is to be a role model for bad habits. Things like smoking, waking up late, and stressing out to the point of burnout aren’t desirable. And we are not just talking about your child’s wellbeing here. We are also talking about your happiness and longevity. All of us can benefit from developing some healthy habits. And that’s especially true when a person is going through recovery.
Now, we understand that it might be difficult to completely change the course of your life. You might have every desire to do it, but actually doing it is going to be a completely different thing. That’s why we suggest that you start small. In other words, take it one good habit at a time. Start by making more nutritious meals for your entire family and limiting how often you eat out. Then you can continue to introduce regular physical activity in your days. Yes, even a 30-minute walk counts as physical activity. These changes don’t seem like a big deal once you first start making them. However, soon enough, there will come a day when you will look back and realize how big of a difference they have made.
Most importantly, your child is going to mimic your healthy behavior. They will learn about the importance of physical activity, reduced stress levels, and proper hydration. What’s the worst thing that can come out of this? In the worst-case scenario, your entire family is going to be a lot healthier. That’s not so bad, is it?
6. Set some rules
Children might not respond well to rules, especially if they are teenagers. After all, this is a notoriously difficult period for parents, as kids tend to be more rebellious. But just because they will act a certain way doesn’t mean that you should forget your duties. As a parent, it is your job to teach your kids to differentiate between right and wrong.
A huge debate has been had surrounding the topic of being a cool parent vs a strict one. We don’t believe in either one, as we think that it takes a certain balance to raise a child. And that couldn’t be more true when trying to prevent a child from inheriting your addiction. Your kid should feel like they have a friend in you and they should be able to confide in you. However, you should never forget that your role is a parental one. Thus, setting some rules and boundaries is going to be a godsend.
Think back to when you were a child. Did you have any rules growing up? Or did you have them but consciously decided to disregard them? It’s very likely that having some rules in place will make a person think twice about the ‘bad’ things. Your rules don’t have to be extremely strict. It should be okay for your child to go out, as long as they make it back by their curfew. Likewise, they can go out freely, as long as they avoid certain places and substances. Most importantly, you should make it known what kind of behavior is going to get them punished. Knowing that they will lose access to their phone might make them think twice about coming home drunk at the young age of 16.
7. Get the necessary help
Unfortunately, you can never be 100% sure that all of your methods have worked. Sometimes, no matter how hard you try, your child could become addicted to drugs or alcohol. What’s important is for you not to panic and approach this situation with a cool head and composure. For starters, if you notice that your child is acting weird, make sure you keep a close eye on them. It’s very important to spot the signs of addiction early on, as that allows you the best chance of getting your child the help that he/she needs. If you do notice that they have been abusing any substances, it’s time to take some action.
For starters, have a family intervention or invite a professional to hold one for you. Be very sensitive about how you do this, however. You don’t want to anger your child and make him/her go into denial. If they accept to get help (which we hope will happen), then you need to continue by finding good alcohol, drug, or prescription drug programs in Florida for them. Depending on how far their addiction has come, they might even have to spend some time in a rehab facility.
But even if this does happen, and we can all agree that it is the worst-case scenario, you should realize that there is still enough time to help your child. Remember, you were once in the shackles of addiction too, and you have managed to come out of it. Of course, nobody likes to see their child in this situation. However, life happens, and the important thing is to keep moving forward.
You can always work on preventing your child from inheriting your addiction
In fact, we would go as far as to say that the only thing you can’t affect in this process is the genes. Everything else can be positively impacted by you. We won’t say that it’s going to be easy to prevent your child from inheriting your addiction. However, there are many things that you can do to make sure that happens. We’d say that the main one is providing them with a good example.
If they see that you are sober and that you are taking good care of yourself, then they are probably going to learn to do the same. Besides, we also advise you to keep an open line of communication with your children. It’s important for them to feel like you are being honest. If for any reason, they start to exhibit the signs of addiction, then you know what to do. Seek the necessary help and help them overcome this period.