Aug
21

Addiction: Dealing With The Non Addicted Siblings!!!!

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Addiction: Dealing With The Non Addicted Siblings!!!

 

 In 1979 Sister Sledge released the song, We Are Family.  As I began to listen to the lyrics I began to think we are all connected in one way or another.  This connection has been made stronger because of the website www.addictsmom.com, which was started by Barbara Theodosiou, a mother who knew she was not alone when dealing with having addicted children. She developed The Addict’s Mom to give mothers of addicts a platform to share without shame, find resources, and to see that they are not alone. In visiting www.addictsmom.com I came across a question, how do you deal with the non addicted siblings?

 The beginning of dealing with the non addicted siblings is to acknowledge that there is an addict in the family. One way to acknowledge this is to gather the family together and accept the fact that there is an addict in the family. At this family gathering it is important to formulate a plan of action to deal with the addict and all that are affected by the addict’s actions.

Setting boundaries is a very important step in dealing with the addict and your non addicted siblings. Believe it or not most kids want rules and regulations. It is when you set boundaries and explain consequences and stick to the plan that you can positively affect your non addicted siblings.

 It is important to talk to your kids especially the non addicted children. Take an interest in your children, know who their friends are, know what activities they are involved in, make it a point to show interest in your children. Remember you made a conscious decision to bring a child into the world and you have a responsibility to nurture and guide the child the best you can. Be aware they are going to do things where you will have to discipline them and make tough choices, Many times by being strict from day 1 and setting and sticking to boundaries you set in motion the behaviors that lead away from drug and alcohol use. The biggest thing you can do for your children is to speak to them and make time for them. The best words you can ever tell your child is I am here for you. This doesn’t mean financially it means emotionally and spiritually.

 Removing that which is toxic from the home sometimes makes it a bit easier to deal with the non addicted children. In some cases it means having the addicted child removed and setting the boundary that until they are clean and sober they can not have contact with any members of the family. In doing this it will force the addict to get the help they need if they so desire. You may want to do an inventory of the foods you are feeding to your children as they also affect the brain and as a result affect certain actions of the child.

 Exercising with your children can be a great bonding experience as it helps them understand that it is necessary to take care of your physical health as well as your mental health. Kids that exercise are found to have a better self concept of themselves than those who do not.

 By doing activities with your children that focus on making the mind, body, soul connection and interacting with other families will show your non addicted children that there is more to life than drug and alcohol use.

  Coming from a GOD centered and Gratitude filled position will help in dealing with your children. When was the last time you told your child I appreciate you.

 Expressing harmony by being joyous in what you do and finding the joy in every situation, even those that fray your nerves will lead to better relationships with your children.

 Allow your actions to inspire your children. Children will model what they hear and see.

 By expressing joy in all you do when interacting with your children will lead to better lines of communication and thus begin to remove the problems associated with having an addicted child. It has been shown that when a parent expresses joy and understanding that their children thrive.

 Showing kindness in all you do will help instill values with your non addicted children that may positively influence them and discourage them from using drugs and alcohol.

 Being a loving and compassionate parent will open lines of communication and build a trust with your children so that they feel comfortable in coming to your about any issues or challenges that they are facing.

 Be the motivator in your child’s life when they come to you with an idea that may not make sense to you don’t tell  them how bad you think it is instead check your ego at the door and be open to listen and then be that lifter and encourager and you will see how they begin to open up more and more to you so that when the issue of drug and alcohol use comes up you can have a very deep and honest discussion.

 Take a nonjudgmental stance by asking questions and listening. Before reacting take a deep breath and resolve to hold a special sacred place for your child without judging them. When you remove judgment from the equation you begin to relate and communicate much more effectively with your child.

 Give your child opportunities to open up to you and create a trusting bond that flows both ways. Give your children opportunities to grow and experience life by guiding them with positive interactions.

   Use the 12 step program and tailor it to how you are interacting with your children.

 Question your children so you know what they are doing and who they are associating with? Ask your children questions so as to build their trust so they will come to you when issues arise.

 When the addicted child gets on the road to recovery share the progress with the non addicted children. The recovery process involves the entire family.

 Sharing scripture is a great way to deal with your non addicted children. Start the discussion and leave all judgment at the door.  many times when a child has a solid foundation in scripture they do not turn to outside influences such as drugs and alcohol.

 Trust your children and when they mess up point it out to them in a loving and caring manner and trust them to figure it out.

 Being unwavering in the setting of boundaries and process of consequences will create continuity in creating children that do not turn to drugs and alcohol.

 Developing vision boards with you children will give you a better understanding of what they want and thus helps you as a parent to help them get what they want as you can be supportive.

 Walking with your children and engaging them in conversation can lead to a better understanding and thus lessen their perception that using drugs and alcohol is okay.

 Being committed to extinguishing pandemic that has become addiction in our society and openly discussing it with your non addicted children will lead to their understanding and personal growth.

 Your are the best resource as you are living with the challenges of having an addicted child and making a decision to be part of the solution.

 Setting a Zero Tolerance Policy in your home when dealing with your addicted child and their non addicted siblings will lead to a positive resolution of the situation.

 This week stay strong when dealing with your addicted child and the non addicted siblings by being honest in your communication, supportive in your actions, loving in your interaction. Stay Positive!!!

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