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Summer is here, put on the sunscreen!

By: Laura Holland, Recovery Care Clinical Specialist

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1 Your Role
I want to learn about treatment options for:


2 Basic Information
The Person is:
years old


graduated high school

3 Condition Information
Caron Treatment Centers accepts patients aged 13 years or older. For more information on services available to those 12 and under, please learn more about Caron's Student Assistance Program.
Whether it's an invitation to watch a ball game, attend a cook out, catch some waves, or hang by the pool, warmer weather can lead to an increased opportunity for more social gatherings. Initially these events sound like fun… but then your mind starts racing, and questions start to flood in. "Should we go?" "What if my loved one is triggered?" "What if someone offers them something?" "The last time we were together it didn't go well…" And again, you're reminded of the pain this disease has caused you.

However, as you listed the things that cause you anxiety about attending social gatherings, let me ask you a question: Was the focus on your loved one? Or on yourself?

In the active addiction stage, the individual with the disease is often the focal point. A hope is that in the recovery stage, family members can begin to focus on self and their own needs.  One of the best things you can do for your loved one who has the disease of addiction is to practice self-care and allow yourself the opportunity to heal.

Social gatherings can still happen and feel enjoyable. But like putting on sunscreen before heading out to the sun, you may need to prep yourself for these activities. Perhaps the "sunscreen" is calling someone from your support group before you go to talk about your worries. Or maybe it’s attending a meeting or discussing with peers how they’ve handled similar situations. Additional ways to engage in self-care could be prayer or meditation, or seeing an individual therapist. The possibilities are endless. If a given event or situation provokes a high level of anxiety, then its time to up the "SPF of your sun screen" and increase your self-care.

Just being aware of the triggers you experience when you’re invited to a social gathering will become really helpful, because then you will know that self-care initiatives should be exercised. Having a plan and putting on your “sunscreen” before attending these functions can help keep you from burning out.

Addiction is a family disease and recovery is possible for all involved.