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Melissa and Sandy Concoct a Plan

Addiction Recovery for Families, Beverly Buncher, Early Sobriety, Family Recovery, Featured Article, Four Foundations of Family Recovery, Life Purpose in Recovery | November 9, 2013

Melissa paused…recalling the events of the morning in her mind.

“Until we drove past mom and I started to snap out of it.”

Sandy added, “It’s true. We saw you driving by and Melissa suddenly wanted to come back home. I told her I wanted to get clean too. And she said you might be willing to help us both.”

Well, this was an unexpected twist. Millie and Tom exchanged wide-eyed looks with each other. They were clearly shocked. But, then again, these two had been inseparable for so long – even going to college together before their troubles began…

“Mom, dad, I know it sounds crazy, but I’d feel better about all of this if Sandy and I could go to treatment together.”

There. It was out. Melissa gave Sandy a sideways glance as she waited to hear what her mom had to say.

Sometimes it seems like whether or not someone gets caught, gets help, gets sober or gets away is such a crap shoot…A car pulls out, a parent drives by, a friend calls, an old drinking buddy gets sober and turns up at the door…But there ARE things that family members can do to up the odds of a loved one getting and staying sober. We call that ‘contributing to recovery.’ And there are things a family member can do to lower those odds, also known as ‘contributing to addiction.’

I’ve written 2 easy-to-sift through e-books to help you become a more effective helper in your loved one’s life. You can learn more by going here.

Tip #23

When you are hit with the unexpected, don’t go with your first reaction. Breathe in slowly and deeply. Give yourself time to move from shock to thought. It’s okay to say, “Let me give this some thought.”

“Wow Melissa,” her mom said, “You’re right. That does sound crazy. But we want to help you get well. Let your dad and I do some thinking. In the meantime, how about some lunch for you girls?”

As you probably know, putting two best friends or spouses or lovers or siblings who did drugs together into treatment together isn’t always the best plan. Millie and Tom intuited this, but didn’t want to lose this chance to get their daughter sober. By now, they knew better than to leave her alone for long, so they took only a moment to gather themselves and get a plan going.

Tip #24

Learn from your mistakes.

Tip #25

There may come a time when it takes more than just you to help your loved one move forward. When that time comes, have people in place and move forward.

While Melissa and Sandy were eating, Millie got things moving while Tom kept them company…but this time an extra phone call was needed.

You may have missed parts of Melissa’s story. If you’d like to read more about Melissa, her family members and the tips I mentioned earlier, you can go to the upper right hand side of this page and add your best email address to receive a free guide to being in relationship with a loved one who is dealing with addiction. It tells you a bit more about “Being a Loving Mirror”. You’ll also be able to follow stories like Millie’s through regular emails delivered to your inbox.

One more thing… Do you know a Millie, a Salllie, a Tom, or a Melissa? Share these stories with them.