You and your family have waited for this day for years: Your tour of duty is over, you’ve been honorably discharged, and you can finally get back to enjoying life as a civilian. Right? You probably know by now that it isn’t quite that simple. Military service leaves enduring scars, and when you turn to drugs and alcohol to cope, that creates a whole new set of problems. If substance abuse is destroying your dreams of a peaceful life after discharge, you may feel helpless and alone. The idea of leaving your family yet again to get treatment could make you feel like a coward – or a failure. However, that couldn’t be further from the truth. Asking for help and getting treatment for substance abuse as a veteran could be one of the bravest things you’ve ever done, in a lifetime already defined by bravery. Here’s how to do it.
How to Know You Need Rehab
Drug and alcohol addiction can creep up on you. What started as drinking with friends can quickly escalate into lost hours and days of boozy blackouts. A prescription for a wartime injury can easily spiral out of control. How do you know when you’ve crossed the line from “normal” use to something more dangerous?
The most important thing to know is that there is no one definition of “rock bottom.” Everyone has a different level of pain and destruction that they’re willing to take before deciding to get help. In recovery, some say, “The bottom is where you stop digging.” If you feel that drugs and alcohol are having a negative effect on your life, getting help now can stop it from getting much worse.
What can those effects look like? The truth might surprise you. Drug and alcohol abuse can lead to relationship problems and fights, poor work performance, depression, financial difficulties, legal issues, health issues, and more. Basically, if you have any kind of problem in your life and you’re drinking or using, your substance abuse could be at the root of it.
In short, if you think your life could be better without drugs and alcohol, you’re probably right.
What to Expect in Addiction Treatment for Veterans
Addiction treatment for veterans won’t just help you stop drinking and using. It can help you heal the reasons why you’re drinking or using too much in the first place. With a variety of different treatment options, experienced and caring professionals will put together a plan to get to the root of your problems and help you solve them. That could mean healing long-buried trauma, learning positive skills for coping, or even getting a diagnosis and/or prescription for other mental disorders that may be buried under your addiction, like depression, anxiety, or PTSD.
Drug and alcohol abuse is simply the symptom of deeper problems. Residential addiction treatment can help you stop drinking and using for long enough that you can see what the real problem is, and learn how to solve it for good.
Addiction Treatment & The Family
Addiction doesn’t just harm the individual who’s using, though. The whole family is affected by substance abuse, and comprehensive addiction treatment can help heal the family, too. Not only will you learn how to rebuild your relationships with your loved ones; but also, when appropriate, addiction treatment facilities may offer resources and support to your family as well. You’ve all been through your own private battle, and you all deserve help learning how to heal.
Ironically, in some cases taking time away from your family could be the very best thing that you can do to show your love for them. By focusing on your own healing, you give them the time and space that they need to focus on theirs. At the same time, though, you’ll be taking the steps you need in order to have the kind of homecoming you’ve always wanted: returning home as a changed person with the strength, peace, and vision to live a happy life and be the leader of your family.
Although you might be afraid to tell them that you need help and some time away, it could be the one thing that they've been waiting to hear.
Addiction Treatment for Veterans
At Country Road Recovery Center, we understand the special needs of veterans in addiction treatment. In fact, our Admissions and Marketing Director, Drew, is a veteran and alumnus of Country Road himself. Give us a call and Drew can listen to your story and walk you through his own experience at Country Road to see if it might be a fit for you. We can even help walk you through how to break the news to your family.
You fought for our freedom, and you deserve to enjoy it. Start your road to that future of recovery at Country Road by contacting us today.