Many times a person struggling with addictions is unaware of the underlying problems in their lives. They also do not realize the impact that their behaviors have on loved ones. They are masked by substance use and disorders. An effective part of an addiction treatment program should be in determining mood disorders and other co-occurring disorders. These can be the root of the behavioral problem for some. Other times the underlying concern is in the home. Codependency in a home environment can oftentimes also be an unhealthy factor fueling negative behaviors. In our rehabilitation program we offer specialized support and compassionate therapies to address the codependent relationship.
Codependency and Addiction
Nearly all of alcoholics and addicts struggle with the problems of codependency in some form or other. This begins within the home where other individuals are promoting and responding to the cycles of codependent behaviors. This cycle is where drug and alcohol addiction thrive. It gives the individual the fuel to use addictive substances as a way out of the cycle of codependent reactions. Therapies in rehab help to the individual better understand the behaviors of codependency.
What is codependency? In a codependent relationship there is no responsibility or accountability. Because these elements are not present, there are no boundaries established for the individual. This gives them every reason in the world to continue with the behaviors of addiction and substance abuse. The codependent behaviors of the family member allow this action to thrive in the alcoholic/addict. Because it is so frequent, it becomes an involuntary action, and an unconscious reflex from these types of situations. This creates problems in the home, as well as unnecessary stress and anxiety in all involved.
The Three Areas of Codependence
The cycle of codependency revolves around three typical behavioral roles, the victim, the rescuer and the critic.
The Victim - At no point is the problem ever the victim's fault. The victim will always pass the blame onto something or someone else and never take responsibility or accountability for their actions. The alcoholic/addict playing the victim role will look to put the blame of their problems on another, and never address it as their responsibility.
The Rescuer - This is the behavior that claims the responsibility. The rescuer either takes on the problem as their own, or passes blame to something else, but always absolves the victim of all responsibility for their action. The rescuer allows the alcoholic/addict to continue their behaviors because it simply is not their fault, or is beyond their control.
The Critic - The critic's role is a simple one, to point blame. Their purpose is to persecute and put blame on the Victim and the Rescuer. Being critical magnifies the problem and allows for the behavior to continue to happen. The alcoholic/addict can either be critical of others behaviors or use the persecution of another as a reason to continuing the cycle of using.
Codependency The Behavior of Fear
Codependency thrives in fear. It subsists off the drama created by the endless cycle of individuals not taking responsibility for their actions. The fear never allows the individuals to make the conscious changes needed to change behavior. There are no boundaries established, and the behavior continues to thrive. The purpose of addiction treatment programs is to help the individual make the conscious changes in their behaviors. It is also imperative to change the cycle of fear with codependency into an environment where love can thrive. This is a foundation for recovery and eliminating situations that can lead to relapse.
Changing Attitudes and Behaviors
Changing the attitudes and behaviors of a codependent relationship can be easier said than done. In a drug rehab setting, this change begins with the 12-step program. The first step is for the alcoholic or addict to accept that they have a problem and are powerless. The victim, rescuer and critic realize with this step they alone are responsible for their actions. Those involved learn that they must rely on a power that is outside of each other to help them with their condition. When the focus is a power greater than one's own, the playing field becomes level. The victim, rescuer and critic realize they are all on the same plane, and one is not greater than another.
Codependency treatment also requires the individual to have a conscious awareness of their behaviors. Instead of acting on reflex, they are more thoughtful towards those they are influencing through their behavior. This is done through holding a person accountable and sticking to boundaries that are established. Most importantly, this should always be done with love as the intention. As long as the recovering alcoholic/addict has focus of their higher power, the behavior will be one of love and not of shame, blame or fear.
Cirque Lodge Individual and Family Treatments
When the individual comes into our alcohol and drug rehab center, a large part of the process is to treat them for their codependency problems with therapy. Each resident benefits from having a primary counselor who helps them on with multiple one-on-one sessions each week and coordinated phone or video sessions with the family. These therapies address their behaviors and provide methods for rehabilitating and changing these behaviors.
Since the alcoholic/addict isn't the only one struggling with these behaviors, a family program is part of drug treatment at Cirque Lodge. Family Week is designed to help families address the drama of codependency within the home. Workshops are provided to raise awareness on these behaviors and how to avoid enabling. Therapies are provided on a family level to help remove the fears within the home and begin the process of healing and love.
People can revert back into the behaviors of a codependent relationship throughout the recovery process. The real solution is to make sure that it doesn't thrive. The fear that comes from this type of behavior must be short lived, and the focus of love and a higher power must continually exist. We strive to make every alcoholic/addict, as well as their families aware of the dangers of codependency. This is done with a caring environment filled with love and support. This can help to restore the responsibility and accountability needed for long term sobriety.
If someone you love is struggling with alcoholism or drug addiction, Cirque Lodge can help. We offer an effective and caring treatment plan in a world class rehab center. For individuals with co-occurring disorders and problems, we focus on providing the most compassionate dual diagnosis services.