The children of people who suffer from alcoholism often have life-long effects on their behavior, relationships and their own possible battles with addiction. If you are a parent who is in recovery, the best thing you can do for your children is get the help you need. Once you have been to treatment and come home, you may find that recovering from alcoholism and parenting presents its own separate set of challenges.
While parenting is never easy, it can be especially difficult for people who are in recovery. Luckily, with time and effort, parenting and your relationship with your children will flourish and be the most rewarding thing in your life. The effects on children who have a parent who suffers from addiction are devastating, so make sure you have a lot of support, practice self-care, ask for help, start small and keep your sobriety first.
Support is Key When Recovering From Alcoholism and Parenting
Support is the number one aspect of having a successful recovery. Without support, whether from family or from a sober community, it is very difficult to live your day-to-day life. This is especially true when it comes to parenting. Let’s face it: parenting is stressful, and with enough stress, a relapse might trigger. Just make sure you are able to lean on your support system and be open and honest with them about how you’re feeling. If you’re noticing signs of stress and relapse, make sure you go to meetings and do your best to manage your stress levels.
Practicing self-care in the recovery process is extremely important, especially if you are a parent. Children can be stressful at times, and recovering from alcoholism and parenting presents its own unique challenges. This is especially true if your addiction caused you to isolate yourself from your children and you’re getting used to spending a lot of time with them. Make sure you go for a walk, meditate, exercise or even just watch a funny movie at the end of the day. Whatever it is that makes you happy – do that.
Don’t Be Afraid to Ask for Help
Every parent needs a break every now and then, so do not be afraid to ask for help from your loved ones, or for hiring help. There’s nothing wrong with spending time alone or with your partner away from the children for a stress-relieving date night, or for spending an hour at the gym alone to relieve stress. Make time to do what makes you happy, because keeping your stress levels in check is the most important thing for your children.
Make Promises You Can Keep
When you were in the throes of your addiction, chances are you let your family down in many ways. Repairing the relationships with your family takes work and is an important part of recovery, and this includes fixing your relationship with your children – no matter how young they are. Small children are very smart and can be let down if you don’t call when you say you will, don’t come to their sports games, aren’t at their recitals or consistently break other types of similar promises.
Now that you are recovering from alcoholism and parenting, it is important that you start small with your children to slowly gain their trust back. When you return from treatment, you may feel motivated and want to promise them the world. However, it is important to not let them down. Start small by promising them small things, such as:
- Ice cream over the weekend
- Taking them to a movie
- A trip to the toy store
Once you have started small and are able to fulfill these promises, your children will begin to trust you more. Then, you can work your way up to bigger promises such as spending the day together, larger outings like a theme park or even living together if you’re not currently living at home.
Take It One Day at a Time
Most of all, it is crucial you take recovering from alcoholism and parenting one day at a time. Every day can present new challenges, whether that is with a fussy toddler or with an angsty teen. Take it slow, and make sure your sobriety comes first.
About Pinelands Recovery Center
Family is extremely important when it comes to the recovery process. While it might initially seem challenging to repair your relationship with your family and your children at first, just remember to start small and keep your self-care a priority. Your sobriety and recovery is the most important thing in the world and the most important thing in your children’s world. Your children deserve the best version of you, and keeping your recovery number one is the best way to do that.
Pinelands Recovery Center of Medford is widely known as one of New Jersey’s finest, most respected addiction treatment facilities. With comfortable 30-bed accommodations and 24-hour professional staff, we can offer clients a serene, relaxing environment amid the lush piney woods. This stress-free setting with its sense of warmth and welcoming enables you to feel comfortable and confident about your clean and sober life ahead.
We will establish clear goals, both general in nature and specific to your needs. We continue to monitor those goals, to make sure that our clients are progressing and buying into their recovery plan. We thrive on assisting clients in feeling connected to the recovery community, share and demonstrate effective coping techniques, help clients to modify attitudes and patterns of behavior and everything else you will need to be happy and productive living a sober, healthy life.
We ensure that clients complete their planned concrete tasks, encourage hope, optimism and healthy living. Our recovery program is not a revolving door treatment program; it is a recovery model designed to help clients go on to lead productive, happy lives. For more information, visit pinelandsrecovery.com