What Does A Teen Who Has Relapsed Need to Hear?
If you’ve ever experienced a loved one or teenager relapse, it’s an unfortunate event. But what does A teen who has relapsed need to hear? Have you ever felt disappointment, anger, and even despair when someone dear to you relapses? Or are you one of the spouses, siblings, parents, children, or friends in the population whose life has been affected by one’s addiction? In this article, we will further discuss how you can best handle teens suffering from relapses.
A recent study shows that an estimated 20 million Americans struggle with different issues of substance use annually. Most teens that have had any experience with substance abuse are familiar with relapse. Unfortunately, it’s so common that it’s almost expected.
It may seem very frustrating, but these aspects will still be the essential toolkit in someone’s sobriety journey with your encouragement and support. Addiction can last a lifetime, and teenagers dealing with a drug relapse and possibly experiencing mental health issues should feel that they are not alone.
After completing teen drug rehab in connection with substance abuse, there is still a high possibility for relapse. According to studies, the percentage of the teen population experiencing relapse after successful teen drug treatment accounts for about 60%.
Our Teen Outpatient Program provides adolescents and young adults suffering from teenage substance use disorder the most essential and efficient therapeutic services they need to identify, cope with, and ultimately overcome addiction. To assist on the recovery path after outpatient care, there are options for teen mentoring and a teen companion. These are essential teen aftercare programs, so the teens know that they have the necessary support systems and resources to help avoid a future relapse.
What Does Relapse Mean?
A relapse is a medical condition when a recovering patient struggling from substance addiction returns to their bad habits with the exact prevalence prior to Treatment.
What to Say to Someone Who Relapsed
If you know someone struggling with addiction, they should not feel like they have to deal with it alone. They are often experiencing a wide range of emotions from fear to anger to deep sadness, and hope can affect life’s decisions. While every situation is different from one person to another, one crucial aspect of this experience is determining how to react if a relapse occurred. Some approaches tend to be more effective, kinder, and smoother than others.
Here are proven and tested suggestions you should try saying to someone after a relapse.
Teen Drug Relapse Doesn’t Mean You Are a Failure.
One of the most common thoughts when a teen suffers from a relapse, is failure. Statistics show that 90 %of patients trying to become sober from alcohol or battling with opioids addiction will experience relapse symptoms within a year. Overall, with a percentage of 40 to 60, people who recovered from certain addictions will regress. However, it is possible to manage and sustain effective recovery despite having single or multiple relapses. If a patient is dedicated and committed to sobriety, the chances for lasting recovery will never be gone.
I Know Your Real Intentions.
It’s highly possible for a teen that relapses to feel guilty and shameful. They may also think that everyone around is giving them a hard time and thinking the worst about them. That’s why it’s helpful to reaffirm that you will continue to support their sobriety. Showing empathy could mean the world as they overcome this battle.
But remember, this doesn’t mean that you should not hold a person accountable for the results of their wrongdoings or act as if no treatment or medical attention is required.
I Will Support You.
One of the sweetest things you can do is provide the person unconditional love, understanding, and support. It helps them fight their fears and avoid them from having assumptions that they have ruined relationships. Let them feel that you are there to support, care and love them—deterioration or not.
What Have You Learned from This Experience?
After establishing support and care for your beloved teen that has relapsed, it’s time to work on the next step. The most important thing is to determine the root cause of the problem. What happened in the past? Generally, full relapses occur in various stages–emotionally, mentally, then physically. Determine the reason that might have given the teen the biggest problem. Consider other possibilities and co-occurring conditions such as stress or depression that might not have been addressed during teen drug Treatment. After this, devise another plan that incorporates what had been missed in the initial treatment.
What Can I Do Right Now to Help?
Expressing your care and support will make them feel that they are not alone, that you are with them as they try to become sober. Ask wholeheartedly what they need from you. There are many ways to help. You can assist them in finding an effective treatment program, accompany them to a therapist, or help them find funds so they can afford Treatment. Your utmost involvement and care will improve the person’s chances of surviving this life battle.
You Did it Before; You Can Quit Again.
Let’s get you back on track.
If you want your teen who relapsed to win the battle, embracing that optimism is very important. They might not show you that they are encouraged, and you may feel disappointed, but the most important thing is for you to be the channel of optimism. You may want to remind them that they have already won the first time, and doing it again is not impossible.
Nobody is perfect, and we learn from our mistakes.
When the person sees their recovery as a waste of time, the feeling of failure may take over after a relapse. Saying words of encouragement for someone in recovery can divert the focus on the accomplishment and good experiences of sobriety and all the lessons gained from regression.
Would you like to talk about it?
Never force someone to discuss their recent relapse; this might lead to triggering many intense feelings. Always check if your loved one is open, ready, and interested in a conversation about it by asking this question smoothly. If he declines your intention, let them know you are willing to wait for the right time and always available to listen when that time comes. Considering a teen outpatient program is a good idea, so the teenager can have devoted therapy, and the family can also partake in family therapy.
Things You Shouldn’t Say to Anyone Who Has Relapsed
When someone is in his battle with relapse, at least try not to say any of these.
You Were Doing Great. What Happened?
Asking questions to people battling with relapse like “How could you let this happen?” and “I can’t believe you started drinking/using drugs again” can imply to them that it is their fault and you are putting the blame on them. It’s very crucial to understand the true nature of where it began and how it all started. Addiction is curable, and it is a disease, not a choice.
You are Disappointing.
It’s prevalent to be disappointed when someone you love relapses. If you let someone feel that their actions have affected you without being ashamed of them, that would be great. But it will not help if you express any rage. Do your best to understand and analyze the nature of addiction, and resist showing severe anger.
You Didn’t Cooperate Well with the Treatment
Different treatment approaches vary from one person to another, and one undoubtedly had some reflections on their chosen Treatment. The first thing that might come to your mind is that because they failed to sustain the results, the therapy “isn’t working” or is inadequate, and choosing other alternative approaches will be better.
It’s Time for Other Types of Treatment.
A Teen Intensive outpatient program like the one we offer at Key Transitions allows a structured environment 3 days per week, where teens take part in individual therapy, group therapy, and family therapy. Teens also get educational support, and most importantly, a uniquely crafted teen outpatient treatment plan.
How Could You Let This Happen?
Instead of worrying and wondering what caused the relapse, be more proactive and understand individualized warning signs. If you observe any warning signs, speak up; it will be more helpful to their recovery process. It would be best if you always kept in your mind that addiction is not a choice. Centers for Disease Control and prevention, specialized in drug abuse treatment, cited that “substance use disorder” is a medical condition that can be prevented and cured.
Contact us today to confidentially speak with one of our teen relapse experts.