For the Family: Dos and Don’ts of Recovery



Having your loved one go to rehab can bring in a lot of changes. However, this does not mean that things will change for the better overnight. Recovery is a process and the habits and behavior that he has learned in rehab need to be continuously and consistently practiced if you want your loved one to remain sober, and to keep his life going on the right track.

Here are the dos and don’ts of recovery that you need to understand and practice as soon as your loved one leaves rehab.


1. DON’T manage their life in recovery. Before rehab, you may have always been there for your loved one’s every need and now, you are very eager to do the same. You may even think that you know what’s best for him all along. However, this should not be the case. Let him thrive in his new-found freedom and let him relish in this new life he is building for himself. Don’t try to manage his life and constantly tell him what he should do, like he should attend meetings and do this or that.

2. DON’T enable. You may have enabled him in the past, bailing him out of every sticky situation. Now that he is in recovery, it is high time that you let him thrive and do things on his own. Let him know and handle the consequences of his actions so that you are encouraging him to establish new behavioral patterns.

3. DO focus on yourself. Dealing with everything you had to go through before may leave you emotionally, physically, financially, and even mentally drained. Now that your loved one is in recovery, you should also see your self as someone who has to recover as well. You need to heal and be a whole person again. Consider counseling or therapy if necessary so that you will gain your own self-worth and self-esteem.

4. DO stay hopeful.  Recovery still puts your loved one in the face of his own struggles. There will be hardships, depression, anger, frustration, and a mix of many other feelings from him. However, this should be seen as growing pains. Even if he relapses, don’t give up hope. Help yourself and your loved one because it is during these times that he needs you to be strong for him.

5. DO let go of the shame and blame. Exude positivity and avoid bringing up past hurts just so you can pin the blame on him. It’s important to stay positive and keep moving forward. Also, work with him when it comes to your feelings of shame because it can do a lot of harm to your loved one’s recovery.

6. DO expect a lot of changes. You may not be used to how your loved one is behaving now, or you may also notice a change in his outlook. Don’t expect the same things from him, especially when it comes to how he acts around you. Be open these changes and you may even grow to like these.


Are you feeling like you’re at the end of your rope when it comes to a loved one in recovery? We’re here to listen and offer advice. Text or call us:

+63 915 645 2703 / +63 917 509 8826


0 Responses to “For the Family: Dos and Don’ts of Recovery”

  • carol raymond / / Reply

    All valid points, however, it is so difficult to remain hopeful after so many years of recovery/relapse hell. There is something that keeps me from abandoning her–love.

    • Grace / / Reply

      Hi Carol, I went through the same thing with my husband but I guess as long as we don’t give up, there’s still hope. Just be sure you don’t lose yourself in the process. It’s unfair like, how our life and happiness depend on someone else’s sobriety but we have to be strong and keep fighting. Hang in there.

  • Why You Should Stop Enabling « Bridging Hope for Recovery / / Reply

    […] many past posts, we have written about how to draw the line between enabling and empowering and how families can help their loved ones who are in recovery. Addiction and recovery can be a rollercoaster ride of emotions and judgment calls, a tug-of-war […]

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