Addiction is a Family Disease

Addiction is a disease that affects the entire family. While the person with a substance abuse problem struggles to heal in recovery, family members may also need to heal and could benefit from counseling. Perhaps they experienced a disruption of family communication, trust, stress, and have resentments. Or, they may have been traumatized by an overdose. Listen to a group of people in substance abuse treatment discuss addiction as a family disease.

Discussion Guide:

In what ways has your addiction affected your family?

Who in your family was most negatively affected by your addiction? Who was least affected?

Do you believe that your treatment outcome will be improved if your family also receives treatment?

Has your family participated in your substance abuse treatment? If so, in what ways and was it helpful?

If you could design a family therapy session, what information or content would you want to cover?

Supplemental Reading:

Why is Family Therapy an Important Part of a Recovery Curriculum?, Black Bear Lodge,