How Do I Reframe My Parenting After Addiction Treatment?

How Do I Reframe My Parenting After Addiction Treatment?

Dr. Norris Von Curl, II, MD

Dr. Norris Von Curl, II, MD

For mothers in recovery, it is normal to feel overwhelmed, guilty, or a sense of shame. The recovery process is tasking. Having a family at home to care for can add to a mother’s life stresses while overcoming addiction. However, fostering a healthy and happy life with children is possible with the right support and guidance. After addiction treatment, mothers may feel the need to reframe their parenting style. They may need to find a balance between supporting and loving their children unconditionally while also prioritizing their recovery journey.

At First Steps Recovery, the staff works with clients to guide them back into their normal routines. For mothers, this guidance is essential. While being guided, mothers can begin to reshape their routines to support themselves and their families effectively without using substances.

Mothers and Addiction

Women tend to have different experiences with addiction than men. For instance, women are more susceptible to coexisting disorders such as addiction paired with anxiety, eating disorders, or post-traumatic stress disorder (PTSD). Women may also experience mood and behavior changes, low self-esteem, and traumatic events related to addiction more intensely than men.

For mothers, specifically, there tends to be a greater need and desire to seek treatment for the sake of their families. However, it is often difficult for mothers to be vulnerable with their families because of the pressure to be perfect mother figures. The stresses of motherhood may also encourage addiction or addiction-related behaviors and mindsets. Mothers often feel guilt or shame because of their addictions, leading to self-isolation and suppressing the issue.

How Does First Steps Recovery Guide Clients With Balancing Motherhood?

It is important for mothers to realize that there are healthy ways to cope with stress, whether the stress is related to parenting or not. Women often prefer holistic services, and First Steps Recovery offers holistic services paired with clinical treatments and therapy. Incorporating healthy lifestyle habits and coping mechanisms allows mothers to express their creativity and feelings, which fosters well-being. Some of these holistic services are art therapy, music therapy, yoga therapy, and nature-based therapies.

Rather than be confined to clinical treatments and therapies, at First Steps Recovery, mothers are able to explore themselves on a deeper, more personal level. This self-exploration helps them to create a happier life for themselves and their children. By incorporating these holistic and self-directed services, mothers are able to develop healthy coping mechanisms they can implement in their everyday lives.

First Steps Recovery also offers intensive outpatient programs (IOPs). An IOP offers the same level of care as an inpatient program does. However, an IOP allows clients to stay in the comfort of their homes. This program may be most beneficial for clients with families. An IOP allows mothers to stay in their home environment when receiving treatment. That way, mothers can continue to be directly involved in their children’s lives. What’s more, they do not have to miss out on important moments or milestones that are important for the children and mother alike.

Guiding Mothers as They Resume Their Lives After Addiction Treatment

Family relationships need to be strong, especially after addiction treatment, to foster long-term sobriety and healthy lifestyle choices. Family plays such an important role in recovery. The truth is that being surrounded by love and support after addiction treatment is essential for achieving long-lasting sobriety. That’s why transitioning back into one’s normal routine as a mother after addiction treatment should involve receiving support from others while also doing what is best for one’s children.

First Steps Recovery offers continuous care and relapse prevention programs to help all clients, including mothers, feel supported and guided after addiction treatment. Specialists involved in the recovery process can help mothers return home while continuing to incorporate healthy habits. This may look like carving out time when stressed out. It may involve meditating or practicing creative expression rather than allowing stressors to pile up and eventually lead to relapse.

Reframing Parenting After Addiction Treatment

When returning to normal life after addiction treatment, it is important for mothers to know that their parenting approach may need to be reframed. This is normal and often best for all members of the family. A large part of reframing parenting is being able to meet a child’s needs, especially on the emotional level. While a mother is involved in addiction, there is often a lack of appropriate supervision, a lack of emotional responsiveness, emotional abandonment, and a more chaotic home environment. After addiction treatment, though, mothers are able to understand their own needs as well as their children’s needs more fully. The good news is that after addiction treatment, mothers are able to be more emotionally available to their children and families overall.

Creating a safe environment for healing for all family members is important after addiction treatment as well. Mothers may want to help children understand certain aspects of addiction, depending on their age and maturity. This will help them know how to be more supportive toward the mother while knowing they are not at fault for the mother’s Issues. Reframing parenting may also look like involving children in some holistic activities to promote positive habits in all family members. For example, art or music therapy may be appropriate activities for children to be involved in.

Additionally, a mother may need to learn to set better boundaries and ask for help with parenting duties. Often, women sacrifice their own self-care in order to take care of children. Mothers need to find a balance in which their recovery needs are prioritized alongside the well-being of their children.

At First Steps Recovery, we encourage mothers to reframe their parenting after addiction treatment. By introducing mothers to holistic services and healthy lifestyle habits, they are able to implement these coping mechanisms and habits into their normal routines. Our facility also offers intensive outpatient programs (IOPs) for those who cannot leave their homes for the duration of treatment. Mothers are often not as emotionally involved in their families when addiction is present. After recovery, though, they are able to healthily involve themselves in their children’s lives. A large part of reframing parenting is continuing one’s personal healing process while developing stronger bonds with one’s children. To learn more about mothers and reframing parenting, please call us at (844) 489-0836.

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