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How do I tell my family i'm struggling with addiction?

Family support is vital to addiction treatment. However, telling your family that you are struggling with addiction can be challenging. Some people feel guilt or shame and fear their family will judge them. Discussing addiction with your family may be difficult, but it is helpful in the long run.

Entering treatment is vital if you hope to achieve recovery. Addiction treatment will teach you how to maintain sobriety. However, it can also help you learn how to discuss addiction with your family.

If you are struggling with addiction but are afraid to tell your family, reach out to a professional for guidance. They can start you on the right path to treatment. Ultimately, you can become equipped to discuss addiction and recovery with anyone, especially your family.

What to Do if You Are Struggling With Addiction

The first thing to do if you are struggling with addiction is to find acceptance. Time and time again, individuals do not realize or deny their struggle with addiction. It’s normal to grapple with the reality of your situation, but ultimately, acceptance is the first step.

Accepting Your Reality

It’s not easy to accept the reality of your situation in any scenario. Especially when chronic conditions are involved, it’s exceptionally challenging to accept you have to manage the illness for the rest of your life. The beauty of recovery is that you don’t have to focus on your entire future. You just need to accept the card you’ve been dealt to seek treatment and then concentrate on sobriety one day at a time.

Sometimes, accepting your reality requires intervention. An intervention is used to make a loved one aware they have a problem, educate them on their options, and encourage them to seek help. Friends and family gather to speak about how they have been affected by the addiction and express their concern for the person struggling. The ultimate goal is to encourage the person to seek treatment, but friends and family should also offer ways they plan to help their loved one.

If you struggle to accept the reality of your situation, you may want to discuss things with your family now. Ask yourself if you are experiencing signs and symptoms of addiction, and if you are, ask your family how they’ve been affected.

What to Expect From Treatment

Upon accepting your struggle with addiction and considering the best programs or options for you, the next step is entering treatment. Each treatment facility or program differs in many areas, making it difficult to know what to expect. However, there are ways to prepare yourself for entering treatment. That includes researching the facility and asking questions during initial assessments.

For example, at Malibu Wellness Ranch, we focus on offering a whole-person approach to care, support, and a number of services, including:

  • Family services
  • Psychotherapy groups
  • Life skills activities
  • Psychoeducation groups
  • Equine recovery program

These are just a few services we can offer you as you embark on your journey to recovery. Each individual’s struggle with addiction is unique. As a result, we treat each of our clients based on their specific needs. We can work with you to create an individualized treatment plan to help you achieve recovery and focus on any other issues you may be dealing with.

Why Tell Your Family You Are Struggling With Addiction?

There are many reasons you should tell your family you are struggling with addiction. For starters, you may have to leave a spouse, child, or elderly parent to enter treatment. To join a residential program or seek treatment in a facility, specific arrangements must be made if you take care of someone else. Having that conversation about why you must leave is vital.

Another reason to tell your family about your struggle is that they can get you help. Whether it’s through an intervention, driving you to a facility, or attending a family program. Letting a supportive family in on your experience is invaluable. Addiction is an incredibly isolating disease. Even just the support of one family member can significantly impact the trajectory of your recovery journey.

Why Family Involvement Is Vital

At Malibu Wellness Ranch, we understand that addiction can be a family disease because it does affect the whole family. Family therapy teaches your loved ones about your illness, helps them heal, and teaches everyone new skills. Through treatment and family participation, you will:

  • Improve family communication skills
  • Learn to create healthy boundaries
  • Increase engagement between you and your loved ones during and after treatment
  • Reduce the risks of relapse in early recovery
  • Help define family roles and establish a positive home atmosphere

If you have a loving, compassionate, and supportive family, don’t be afraid to talk to them about your struggle with addiction. Together, we can help you and your family successfully achieve recovery today.


Addiction can be an isolating disease but is also a family disease. This is because it impacts the whole family, even though you may often feel alone. At Malibu Wellness Ranch, we encourage family involvement and participation in your treatment and recovery journey. Our family programs can help improve communication, define roles, establish boundaries, and create a positive family environment. The journey to recovery starts with acceptance and asking for professional help and support from your family. If you are struggling with addiction but are afraid to tell your family, Malibu Wellness Ranch can help. Call (800) 862-5428 to learn more about our facility, treatment programs, and how we can help you and your family heal from addiction today.