You’ve just found out that your teenager has an addiction to drugs or alcohol, or maybe both. Maybe you caught them with the substance, maybe you even caught them high or drunk. Hopefully they came to you for help voluntarily. Either way there are some things you must keep in mind to get through this incredibly difficult time and to support your teenager as they go through treatment and into the recovery that will last a lifetime.
They’re not trying to hurt you. Teenagers are prone to addiction for many of the same reasons adults are. High expectations, feelings of shame or inadequacy, etc. it is highly unlikely that they are thinking of you when they drink or get high. It’s hard to believe as they get older, but their lives have expanded and they are encountering real life troubles. The first thing you must know is that your teenagers are young adults with real problems, real stressors, and real emotions. Their actions are almost definitely not a way they are using to hurt you, more likely is that they are in very real pain and looking for a way to make it through.
Addiction May be More Difficult than You Think
They might not be able to stop, even if they want to. Addiction becomes so intense that it changes your body chemistry. After your teenager has been using a substance long enough it is no longer possible for them to safely stop using the drug or alcohol without medically supervised detox. Detox can cause medical complications, and indeed, medical emergencies when not monitored by licensed medical professionals. Withdrawal symptoms can be as severe as death because the body rebels against the idea of eliminating a substance it has come to need. With the help of professionals your teen can come out of detox ready for further treatment like therapy and rehab.
This isn’t your fault, try to resist the need to go back and pick apart each parental choice you made in the past. People become addicted to drugs and alcohol for all kinds of different reasons and teenagers are the same. Instead of trying to take the blame, or even place the blame on them, try to, instead of pushing culpability off on anyone, try to engage with the situation that is in the now. Is your child willing to get help? Are they afraid of what recovery looks like? Do they feel safe enough with you that they are able to fully confide in you?
If you have a teenager facing some of these struggles, or you are an adolescent who wants to get free from the grasp of drugs or alcohol contact us to hear more about benzo rehab in Florida, treatment for sedative addiction, and the cost of drug and alcohol detox in Florida. We can walk you through our detox and rehab programs and help you find the best choices for you, so you can take your first steps through this struggle to a life of sobriety.