Families that are affected by a drug or alcohol addiction need a lot of support as they settle into their new routine. Though much of the focus has been on the addict and their substance abuse problem, the entire family unit needs to learn how to function together to support their loved one and stop the cycle of abuse.
Building Bonds By Cooking As A Family
In today’s society where family time isn’t easy to come by, it’s important to make the most out of every opportunity. One easy way to spend more time together as a family is during dinner.
Families impacted by addiction need to reestablish their ties. Find out how cooking as a family repairs and rebuilds bonds that strengthen the family unit.
Dinner is a time to relax, recharge and connect with one another. Everyone has gone about their day and has something to share; a funny story on the way to work or an embarrassing mishap at school. The simple act of telling stories and listening to each other reestablishes family bonds. Unfortunately, only 59% of families report eating dinner together five nights a week according to a report from the National Center on Addiction and Substance Abuse (CASA).
Not only can families spend meaningful time together at the dinner table, but also they can share it while preparing a meal. Family meals are a representation of the ethnic, cultural or religious heritage of the family, so the more that kids and teens participate in preparing meals, the more they can learn about their family’s background. This is very important for teens and young adults struggling with substance abuse, as they need to feel like they have a purpose and sense of belonging.
Boost Self Esteem
A study from Emory University found that children who knew a lot about their family history had closer relationships with family members, higher levels of self-esteem and a greater sense of control. Additionally, research shows that young kids and teens prefer to eat as a family. As much moaning and groaning may go on about cooking and eating together, it’s something that benefits everyone in the family.
Start A New Tradition
It’s never too late to start a new tradition, so make cooking and eating dinner together a new activity for your family. Start with a favorite recipe, preferably one that comes from your family’s background. Ask older family members for recommendations, or find a cookbook that shares meals from your culture.
If you don’t have any recipes to share, start with something easy. A classic pasta dish is always a winner. Experiment with different recipes until you find a sauce that your family loves. Prepare extra batches and use it to cook your own pizzas or meatball sandwiches.
Cooking and eating together will become more natural over time, but the rewards can be enjoyed right away.
Help Overcoming Addiction Through A Family-Focused Treatment Program
Here at The River Source, we help your loved one safely and effectively overcome addiction. Part of our philosophy is strengthening the family unit, something that is worked on during family counseling therapy. We want our patients to return to a safe, loving and supportive environment after their stay in rehab.
To Learn More About Our Family-Focused Treatment Program, Call The River Source Now!