• Scott McClure

The Ripple Effect: How Addiction Affects First Responder Families



Drug and alcohol dependence doesn’t just affect individuals who are struggling to recover but also other people around them, including their colleagues, friends, and—most significantly—their family members. First responders are those members of the immediate and extended family whose lives are directly impacted by their loved ones struggling through addiction.


Spouses, children and parents often look the other way when their loved one develops a substance abuse disorder. They believe that their loved ones’ affliction with alcohol and drug may be nothing more than a signifier of a difficult day at work.


Unfortunately, when this ‘occasional’ substance abuse turns into the disease of substance addiction, it becomes a monster that cannot be disregarded. Both, medical and therapeutic treatments are required—and often not only for the people suffering from addiction, but for the ones who care for them too.


If you are battling with addiction, here’s what you can do to save yourself and your loved ones.


Take Care of Yourself First


Before you direct your effort toward saving your family, it’s vital for you first get right with yourself. Observe the amount of substance you are using, note the timings, and how it’s impacting your daily activities.


Take a good look at how well you’re performing at work and fulfilling your family responsibilities. This will help you point out the areas where your attention is most required. You can then reconnect with your family when you move further in the treatment process for addiction recovery.


Strengthen Your Spouse


When one individual in a relationship is battling with addiction, the sober partner is left to handle all the household responsibilities, and the children. This often affects their mental and emotional health, which goes ignored in a majority of the cases.


The sober spouse may suffer from depression, stress, anxiety, financial constraints, work stress, and other physical health issues that may end up being neglected. Additionally, they also need to be supportive of their loved one recovering from addiction and this can often get draining over the course of time.


If you are on your way to sobriety, here’s how you can strengthen your marriage and overall wellbeing of your spouse:


· Attend couple therapy

· Encourage your partner to attend 12-step programs for first responder families of addicts

· Encourage your partner to take personal therapy sessions

· Invite your partner in your addiction treatment sessions to increase their awareness of how addiction recovery works.


Commit to Lifelong Recovery


Addiction recovery is a lifelong process, and it takes effort to cultivate and strengthen relationships with your family while you move forward in your journey toward sobriety. However, all these efforts pay off and are totally worth it in the longer run.

If you want to step forward toward a brighter future right now, get in touch with a sober living community in Houston, TX. With a recovery home like Life Launch that offers all the comforts of home, you can work on your journey without worrying about any additional factors.


Contact our recovery house in Houston and let us know about your case. We can help ease you back on the path of effective recovery!

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