Family recovery Advocacy
The decision to go public with one’s family story of addiction or recovery is a highly personal one. Perhaps the first obstacle to overcome is the anticipation of judgments that others will make.
Family advocacy is important due to the demoralization and anger families often experience through multiple episodes of recovery initiation and relapse. Families need to know that there are permanent solutions to addiction and that there is hope for their loved one and their family. Families telling their stories of survival, forgiveness and reconciliation are powerful antidotes to the hopelessness that so often pervades the perception of addiction in this culture.
Parents who have lost children to addiction face a special challenge working in recovery advocacy. It is sometimes hard for these parents to work with individuals and families in sustained recovery. Through these relationships they must face the question of why their family was not included among the success stories. However, the potential value of their stories to other parents and the larger community outweighs such questioning. Most commit their work in advocacy to the loving memories of their lost children. What family members do is shine a light on the shrouded world of addiction and recovery.
Not everyone is cut out to do recovery advocacy at a public level. Many people my have personal or family circumstances that preclude such activity. Recovery advocacy organizations and the larger new recovery advocacy movement, are not asking all individuals and families in recovery to speak out publicly.