Life for the family it is so challenging when addiction is present.  Much advice is available, but we know that it is not always that simple when such strong emotions are involved.

If you are a parent of someone suffering from an addiction, the husband or wife of a person struggling with alcohol dependence, or the son or daughter of an addict or alcoholic, we understand what you are going through and we’re here to help.  We know that addiction damages relationships erodes trust, and causes unbearable anxiety as well as feelings of hurt, shame and anger.


Your Loved One is in Denial and Won’t Accept Help

Unfortunately, denial is often the number one symptom of addiction or alcoholism.  As a result of the denial, the person with the problem is unable to see the reality of the problem.  They will often make excuses, justify behaviour, intellectualise the problem, try to rationalise or sometimes just blame others; often claiming that it is under control when it is clear to you that it’s not.

It is really important to remember that you cannot fix their problems however frustrating that might be although there are some simple steps you can do to help yourself, which may in turn help your loved one.


  • Focus on you and your own wellbeing rather than being consumed with them and their behaviour
  • Allow them to be responsible for their own behaviour
  • Manage your own anxieties
  • Do things which have a positive impact on your mental health
  • Encourage them to seek help


  • Don’t ‘protect’ or rescue your loved one from the consequences.
  • Don’t manipulate, argue or lecture.
  • Don’t neglect yourself or prioritise the needs of your loved one over your own
  • Don’t underestimate the value of tough love and setting healthy boundaries.
The team of counsellors here at The Providence Projects are always available. 

If you would like to find out more about how you can best set healthy boundaries, how you can hopefully encourage your loved one to seek help, find out more about intervention or the treatment process, please call anytime.

Your Loved One is Considering Treatment:

It’s the moment you’ve been waiting for! Your loved one has now admitted that their drinking, using or gambling is a problem, and they are unable to beat the addiction on their own.  Very often, at this stage the person with the problem may be ambivalent; one day they want to come into treatment, the next day they don’t.  Very often the family may get frustrated or angry.

This process is very normal as the addict or alcoholic battles with themselves.  Very often, the resistance is based upon anxiety.  So many people are scared about the thought of checking into a residential rehabilitation programme.  At this stage, we would strongly recommend setting up a free telephone consultation with one of our team in which we can find out more about the situation, run through the options and see if one of our programmes would be suitable.

At this point, it is important that family and loved ones still maintain those healthy boundaries.  ‘Tough love’ as it is often referred to is exactly what it says.  It is the balance of being tough and loving. Supporting your loved one into rehab is best done by reminding them that you want them to go because you love them; because you care.  Encouraging them to get help is not a punishment.  On the hand, if they do not accept help, maintain those clear boundaries but let them know that you are here for them should they decide they want help.

As well as a free telephone consultation, we are able to arrange quick admissions.  We understand that when your loved one agrees to go, it is important to capitalise on the window of opportunity and before they go back into denial!

To find out more, speak to a counsellor, set up a consultation or arrange admission:

Your Loved One is In Treatment

Addiction is a family illness. Much like throwing a stone into the water, the ripple effect of addiction can be far reaching, with those closest experiencing the most disturbance.

Family therapy sessions are conducted for a variety of reasons.  Sometimes it may be with your spouse, your parents or your children.  The content will always be different, but the primary goal is to start a process of healthy, honest and open communication.  We understand just how much damage may have resulted from the addition and relationships will of course take time to repair however research clearly demonstrates that if close loved ones are involved in the recovery process, the greater the chance of long-term positive outcomes.

At The Providence Projects, we are very keen to get the family involved as much as possible.  Family members and loved ones will have a chance to get involved in the treatment process with the consent of their loved one.

All family sessions here at The Providence Projects are facilitated by one of our highly experienced and qualified therapists.  These sessions may be a key part of treatment process and we will look to acknowledge some of the impacts of the addiction, explore how recovery will look for all concerned, provide family members with information on recovery and most importantly develop open and honest communication.

Have a loved one in treatment and would like to find out more or arrange a date for your next family therapy sessions?

What About Life in Recovery?

Very often, when the person completes a programme at The Providence Projects, loved ones and family members experience a real sense of anxiety regarding life after treatment.  This is normal!

During the programme with us, our clients will put together a plan for life after treatment incorporating some of the relapse prevention techniques delivered during our programme.  It may also be useful to agree a plan in the family session so that you collectively know the recovery plan.

In many ways, whether before treatment or after treatment, much of the advice to loved ones remains the same.  However much you would like to help, you are very limited as to what you can do and it is far more useful to invest that time and energy into yourself.  We would strongly recommend that you access support from organisations like Alanon, Familiies Anonymous or Adfam; invest in your own wellbeing whilst allowing and encouraging your loved one to do the same.  This gives everyone the best opportunity for recovery.

At The Providence Projects, we also offer a range of family therapy, couple counselling and other interventions to support the family.

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