Family Illness

Not too long ago our family avoided a relapse. I say family because our daughter was able to reach out to us as she struggled with a new level of anxiety that became debilitating. As parents, we were not only able to get her the care she needed, we also received support within that plan. Sometimes it is difficult to distinguish between being a healthy support & a co-dependent. But the decision to take an active role in our daughter’s care proofed to be a good for all of us.

As parents of addicts, the lines are often blurred with where our responsibility begins & ends. But applying the concept that addiction is a family illness, can aid us in the decision of reaching out for help on the behalf of our child (not for our child). By doing this, we too, might get the support we need as someone else cares for our child. We no longer have to isolate in fear or anger because we are empowered to remember that there are resources available when our child is ready to face their struggles.

Attending the parent to parent group has made it possible for us to evaluate what plan will address the need for our daughter rather than getting caught off guard in the chaos of fear or anger. Looking to our Higher Power & the support of others reminds us we are not alone during the hard times & that we even can celebrate the victories, like avoiding a relapse!

Our role as an advocate when our child is unable to care for him or herself is possible as we address our needs within the group. Our ability to model a healthy response to distress gives our child a chance to also making good decisions, like reaching out to us when they are struggling.

Today’s Reminder:  I will remember how the family illness of addiction requires me to be active in my recovery. I will continue to be aware of my own needs as I determine how to be an advocate for my child during her times of distress:

“God grant me the serenity to accept the things I cannot change; courage to change the things I can; and wisdom to know the difference.”  ~Serenity Prayer


Diane M. Warshofsky, MACC, LMFT, LPC, NCC


You can listen to an audio of this devotional at our podcast A Dose of Hope.


You do not have to walk this path alone. Parenting Through Addiction offers courses to teach you about what YOU can do to help your child as they begin their own path to recovery. We also offer various membership options so you can connect with other parents who are on their own journey to find serenity in the face of their child’s addiction. To learn more click here!