I recently had to admit one of my relatives to a drug rehab and even though I have admitted thousands of people to dug rehab in the past, I still found myself at a loss of what exactly to do to get this family relative to go to rehab. Everyone was asking me for advice about what to do and I found myself giving the same advice that people gave my family many years ago when I went in to drug rehab. The advice hasn’t changed over the years. The process is the same. The important thing to remember when trying to get a family member in to drug rehab is that no one can force a person to go to rehab. The choice is ultimately theirs to make, and should be. Even when a person gets to drug rehab there’s no guarantee they will stay there, and even less guarantee that they will be willing to be cured from their addiction. Even with all my experience, knowledge, and connections in the addiction treatment industry, I felt powerless over my family member’s addiction. Just because I felt powerless didn’t mean I didn’t know what to do. Like I said, the process is the same for everyone. Once it is determined that a loved one or family member has an addiction problem, the first thing to do is find a place for that person to go get the help they need. This does not mean that they will accept the help, but at least it will be ready and waiting when the addict or alcoholic finally comes to the conclusion that they need the help you are offering. So what did I do? I made sure that the plane ticket was in place and the rehab was ready and waiting for him. This was all I could do. I had talked to him numerous times of course, but I could tell he wasn’t quite ready. I also knew that there was really nothing I could say to him to get him to go in to addiction treatment. All I could do is wait. So that’s what we all did. We waited. And then we waited some more. Finally the opportune time arose and we were able to get him on a plane and in to drug rehab within a few hours. Still, the results are up to him. During NTS’s Family Program once a month I tell all the families the same thing. During my speech to the families I tell them this, “In designing the NTS Treatment Program I have made sure that NTS offers every possible opportunity for a person to get sober from drugs and alcohol, but, while we can shove the medicine into their mouths, we cannot make them swallow.” The cure for alcoholism and drug addiction is out there. It is not a mystery. The problem is getting a person to swallow.
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