Recovery is a lifelong process, not a destination that your teen reaches when they complete rehab. Upon their discharge from Next Generation Village, your child will need to continue working to maintain their recovery.
Why are Teen Support Groups Important?Research shows that adolescents who participate in support groups after rehab are more likely to stay sober. Thus, we highly recommend that your child joins a teen support group, where they’ll find a welcoming community of peers who are dedicated to sobriety. Here are some reasons why teen support groups are so crucial to recovery:
- Positive Peer Pressure – Teenagers are especially dependent upon their social structures — so their friends can have a big impact on their choices. The term “peer pressure” often has a negative connotation, but it can work both ways. For example, when your teen is surrounded by peers who encourage them in their recovery, they are much more motivated to maintain sobriety.
- Understanding – Sober support groups can provide understanding in times of distress. Recovery isn’t always painless, but it is easier when your teen has someone who understands what they’re up against. Many times, teens who are freshly out of rehab benefit from a sponsor who is a bit further along in recovery and can pass along advice and healthy coping ideas. Plus, these more experienced sponsors often gain a stronger commitment to recovery by guiding someone else.
- Sober Fun – Drug rehab support groups do more than sit in a room and talk — they have fun together! From laser tag to hiking to movie nights, recovering teens have a blast hanging out without the stressful presence of substance-using peers. To boot, your teen can boost their self-confidence by helping to organize these events.
Why Do Parents Need Alcohol and Drug Abuse Support Groups?Your recovering teenager isn’t the only person in your family who can benefit from group and community support. Oftentimes, parents are so distracted with helping their child that they don’t realize how much the addiction has impacted them. Addiction is considered a “family disease” and responds best when family members are engaged in recovery efforts. Here are some reasons why family support groups are important for parents:
- Understanding — Addiction is tough on the whole family. Support groups for families of addicts offer a nonjudgmental community of peers who understand your situation. Parents leave society’s stigmas at the door, and they are able to openly share and support one another without fear of judgment. Everyone there knows that your child is not a bad kid, but rather, a beloved human being who has the same medical disease as their child — substance addiction.
- Learning — Support groups are a resource that helps you gain concrete skills to encourage your child in their recovery. Learn how you can aid but not enable your child, create a safe and trigger-free home environment, detect any signs of relapse and more.
- Support of Your Child — Your participation shows your teen that you are 100% on their team and committed to helping them stay sober and healthy. This is an indicator that they are not alone in this fight — someone who loves them tremendously is at their side.