Many drug abusers and their family members have, to varying degrees, experience trauma. For instance, many drug abusers say their drug use is a means to cope with the pain of trauma. They are trapped in the vicious cycle of rehab-relapse as they continue to struggle with the long-lasting impact of trauma.
Meanwhile, affected family members often have their own emotional wounds to deal with, apart from handling the impact of drug-related problems at home. In many cases, there will be a communication breakdown between family members and drug abusers, leading to broken relationships and disturbances in family functioning that could have an adverse effect on rehabilitation in the long run.
Funded by Beat Drugs Fund Association, we launch the “Lightning Soul, Renewing Life – Psychological Healing Support Services for Ex-drug Abusers and Their Family Members” from 2018 to 2020. Through therapy group treatments, the project helps drug abusers and their family members to learn more about the relationship between trauma and drug use, so as to have a better understanding of the long-lasting effects of physical or emotional wounds brought about by trauma. Participants are also equipped with knowledge and skills to handle the aftereffects of trauma for long-term and stable rehabilitation.
Rationale and Background
Through the provision of drug treatment and rehabilitation services, Caritas Lok Heep Club observes that many family members of substance abusers exhibited symptoms of codependency in facing their problem. The term “Codependency” is applied to describe their loss of self and the vicious symbiosis with the drug abusers. With improved mental health condition of the family members with codependency, their communication and relationship with the substance abusers could be enhanced and they could better motivate the substance abusers to receive drug treatment.
The project was subsidized by Beat Drug Fund from July 2014 to December 2016.
Drug abusers, Ex-drug abusers and their family members
1. Identify hidden family members of substance abusers with Codependency and hidden abusers with out-reaching services;
2. Promote the mental health of family members of substance abusers with Codependency and enhance their functional relationships within the family. It thereby helps substance abusers get drug treatment.;
3. Raise public concern on “Codependency” through training and press conference.
1. Volunteer training Programme;
2. Exhibition for introducing “Codependency”;
3. Talk on Codependency/Mental Health for family members of substance abusers with Codependency;
4. Intensive case work service for family members of substance abusers with Codependency and/or hidden substance abusers;
5. Medical support service for family members of substance abusers with Codependency;
6. Therapeutic and supportive group for family members of substance abusers with Codependency;
7. Publishing a book/DVD and providing professional training to arouse public concern in dealing with Codependency.