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How to Tell Your Children About Treatment

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How to Tell Your Children About Treatment

how to tell your childrenIf you’ve been addicted for quite some time, your children might have figured it out already. They might know something isn’t right in the house, or they saw you openly take drugs. Children aren’t as naive as we think they are, and it’s important to let them in with what you’re going through.

You know you’re sick, and the best thing for your kids is for you to get well. There can be so many questions you’re asking yourself right now… “Will social services take my children if they know I’m in treatment?” “How can I find someone to take care of my children?” “My children will be devastated… What will they think of me!?” It’s a big decision you’re making, but it’s one that makes total sense. You shouldn’t be thinking Maybe. You should be thinking I’m getting help. The time is now.


Sit down with your kids and explain what addiction is and how it’s a mental illness. Then you can calmly say you are going to get better. You’re going to a facility that will treat you and make you healthy again. By sharing this, they will understand it’s an illness, but you’re going to get better.

This isn’t a choice

Explain to your children that this isn’t a choice. You would love to see them and hang out with them instead, but you need to get better first. Tell them you will call and visit whenever you’re able, and that you’ll miss them greatly. You can also share with them the date you’ll be coming home, so they have something to look forward to. That way, they know it’s temporary and you’ll be in a much better state afterwards.

What can happen when you return

Share with them ideas of what can happen when you return. Tell them you’ll be in a better state of mind for adventures and activities. Plan a trip or a weekly date night with your kids so you can catch up and be there with them. Experience the moments you were too sick to experience before. They are only young once, so make the best of their childhood and experience the world with them.

Posted in Addiction, Detox, Drug Addiction, For Loved Ones, Health and Wellness, Recovery, Residential