One of the most frightening thoughts when considering a drug rehab facility is being without your family or children. Your kids are your life. Thankfully, most facilities take an active stance on including the family in the recovery process. While each center is different, most use the basis that to recover you must have a dedicated support system that includes your friends and loved ones.
Starting the Process at Ground Zero
Initially coming to a rehab center requires you to detox. You start out at the bottom, and you must work your way up. For instance, you may not be allowed to have any phone calls for 2-3 days or longer, no visitors for a couple of weeks, and not allowed to leave the grounds. As you become successful in your sobriety, you will move up through the phases. Some in-house treatment programs are stricter than others, and some require longer durations.
Extended or intensive rehabilitation can last up to two-years. Often you find court ordered, repeat offenders, in these intensive programs. Typically, most programs can be completed in under six months. It all depends on your needs and how long you have battled addiction. Everyone heals at their own pace. So where do your children fit into all this? You should know upfront that you won’t have access to them as you would like. Being separated from the stressors of life is part of your recovery. There’s nothing easy about this journey, but it’s worth a few weeks of loneliness rather than to continue down the same path.
Going for Extended Periods Without Your Children
Many go to rehab having lost their children through the court system, or they are involved in a case with Children’s Services. The very nature of being an addict means that you turn from the ones that love and need you most to seek your drug of choice. Rehab can help you get your kids back, provided it is a term of your reunification plan. Social services will schedule times for your children to come and visit you, even if it is, in short, two-hour increments.
Most centers have visitation hours on Saturday and Sunday. A relative or foster parent can bring the children to see you during those hours. Unless it’s an ongoing treatment center where you have an apartment or dorm, children are not allowed to spend the night. Consider the offerings of each drug rehabilitation center before choosing. If a center does not offer overnight visits, then this may be a reason to choose another facility.
Becoming a Better Parent
The goal of these programs is to learn how to be a better parent and person. An addict cannot be a great parent because of the hold of the drugs and alcohol. Most children find that their parents are better for the journey. However, almost all rehabilitation centers realize that you need counseling and to work with your child to get through these times.
If you are involved in a court case where reunification is the goal, then part of your case plan may require parenting classes. When the time comes to reunify, you will work with a caseworker who specializes in reuniting families. Children often have underlying issues when their parent has a substance abuse problem. The goal is only to reunite when it is healthy for both parties. Thankfully, most centers provide that assistance.
Making the Best of Your Recovery
Even if you only get to see your kids once a week, try to make that time special. All centers have visitation rooms with games and activities to keep families entertained. Try to think of something fun that you can do with them, so they are not staring at the walls for two-hours. Make sure that you use plenty of affection and let them know how much they are loved.
Above all else, be honest with your child. While you may need to sugar coat the truth to a young one that cannot understand what is going on, you should level with older children. Tell them about life’s pressure and what caused you to hit rock bottom. Your children probably already know more than you could imagine and being candid with them can strengthen your bond.
First and foremost, let them know that they did nothing wrong. You are not an addict because they are a terrible child or that they caused you to turn to drugs. Instead, let them know that you will be a better mom or dad when rehab is completed. If you are ready to get started, call us today at 260-297-7092