Wednesday, September 2, 2009

Support People ROCK!

If I’m repeating myself….sue me….but I wish I could write a ‘script for every support person assisting their loved one(s) through an opiate detox for a 2 week all expenses paid vacation to the tropical paradise of their choice.

Support people: YOU ROCK!

To be a support person, you have wrestled with questions like “Am I helping my daughter (son, wife, lover, husband….) or am I enabling her (him…) by going through all that’s involved in a detox? And, you don’t really know what is involved until you go through it.

Committing to be a support person for a loved one going through a detox will push every button you have. The patient is scared but determined, rude but contrite, ashamed but hopeful.

As a support person you may not get much sleep-or you may sleep peacefully for the first time in years… you may not recognize the loved one who is emerging from the “ashes” of the hazy drug induced cloud that opiates create. One Mom said to me, “I don’t even know who the real Sam is…” as she saw him smile and laugh for the first time in years.

This extraordinary week we are detoxing 4 people from methadone. Since The Coleman Institute is a busy mix of family practice patients and addiction medicine, the detox patients’ paths may not cross during the week. But on the weekends when we meet only with our detox patients some beautiful chemistry can happen.

This past weekend these 4 families sat together in the waiting room. They shared stories, laughed, cried and loved their ‘patients’ to the end. One family commuted from Northern Virginia, another family went to Kings Dominion, while another family hit the mall daily, and the fourth family quietly went home and started the slow healing process of caring for a long-lost daughter who has suffered years of sexual abuse.

Please call us if you want to talk about helping your loved one move forward to uncovering who they are meant to be; it will undoubtedly be a vehicle that uncovers truths and strengths about yourself- and who knows? There may be a surprise trip to Hawaii at the end of it all.

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