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What to Say to a Loved One in Rehab
Helpful Words of Encouragement for a Loved One Overcoming Addiction
When someone you know and love enters rehab for drug or alcohol addiction, it can be difficult and uncomfortable for everyone involved. You may be in a situation you’ve never been in before, and it can be hard to know what to say to a loved one in rehab.
Regardless of the challenges, it’s essential to show your support to motivate your loved ones on their journey. Offering words of encouragement for someone in rehab can be what they need to deal with a challenging day and help them stick with their treatment long-term.
You’re happy your loved one has made the difficult step to seek help and take steps to better themselves by entering rehab. Now you want to let them know how much you support them and help them push forward, but you may not know what to say to a loved one in rehab. Here are some ideas to help you communicate in the most meaningful way:
“Everyone Needs Help Sometimes.”
It takes a lot of courage to reach out for help, especially when our culture encourages us to fix problems independently. Addiction is a chronic disease that cannot be cured with mere willpower, and just like any other illness or injury, sometimes we need professional medical help to treat it.
“How Are You Feeling?”
When pondering what to say to a loved one in rehab, make sure you encourage them to share how they feel, which fosters speaking about their struggles instead of keeping them in like they did when they were self-medicating with drugs or alcohol. This does not mean you need to act as their personal therapist and give them advice. Just listen and urge your loved one to take advantage of self-care strategies like speaking to a counselor.
“I Love You.”
Simply letting your friend or family member in rehab know they are loved and valued can be a tremendous help. Many are dealing with guilt and shame, especially over how they treated others, resulting in believing they are not worthy of love. Addiction makes people say and do things they don’t mean, and it’s okay to hate what they have done under the influence and still love them. It’s also alright to share these complex feelings with them.
“I’m Proud of You.”
Many people find it difficult to find pride in themselves after taking the first steps of getting help for addiction. Saying “I’m proud of you” can be some of the most influential and inspirational words you can say to someone in rehab. Recognizing how hard they’re working and acknowledging the changes they’ve already made can really motivate a person to keep going.
“How Can I Help?”
Just ask your loved ones what they need. They may ask you to complete a specific task like helping to take care of a pet, their home, or a loved one. They may ask for emotional support. Some may not even know what to say, but you can let them know the option is open and you are willing to help. This can ease some of the fears and anxieties associated with entering rehab. Let your loved ones know you’re there for them.
“I Know You’re Struggling, But There’s Always Hope.”
If your loved one struggles to control cravings or has even relapsed, it’s essential to let them know there’s always hope for recovery. This simply means they need to take another look at their treatment plan and maybe try something different. Let them know there will be good days and bad days, and this is just a challenging day. Just try to push forward and work for better days.
“What Have You Learned During Your Time in Rehab?”
Encourage them to share what they’ve learned about themselves, their triggers, and events that led up to their addiction. Also, seek to understand the tools they’ve picked up for continued recovery and share in their excitement for milestones they’ve reached. It can mean a lot to know you’re interested in their recovery.
There are many ways on what to say to a loved one in rehab, but most importantly, your support and patience can be a strong motivator. At JC’s Recovery Center, we know how words can have a profound positive effect, and we’re here to help you navigate this tricky road if you’re unsure what to say. You can learn more about our addiction treatment programs with a faith-based approach by calling (844) 524-6873 today. Our knowledgeable and compassionate staff is always here to help guide you.