Celebrating Easter With A Loved One Who Just Got Out Of Rehab
Easter is right around the corner, promising egg hunts, family dinners, candy and other festivities. If you have a loved one who has just finished rehab, however, you may need to plan your Easter celebrations more carefully this year.
With your loved one newly sober, you won’t want to plan any activities that could put their sobriety at risk. Here are some tips to help you plan an Easter celebration that will be both memorable for everyone involved and respectful of your loved one in recovery.
1. Consider The Issue Of Serving Alcohol Carefully
For many people, wine and other spirits are a standard part of the Easter celebration. However, when you have a loved one fresh out of rehab, serving alcohol at Easter dinner becomes more complicated.
For your loved one, the presence of alcoholic drinks could be extremely triggering, even if they are in the hands of other people. For this reason, it may be better to eliminate alcohol from your Easter festivities altogether.
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2. Talk To Family Members In Advance
If you’re having multiple family members or friends over for your Easter celebration, it’s a good idea to discuss the issue of your loved one’s sobriety with them before the day of the gathering.
While some family members may be supportive of your loved one and have no problem giving up alcohol for the day, others may be resistant to this idea. If you have family members or friends who are going to be upset if alcohol is not included in your celebration, it is better to know about this issue in advance.
When dealing with resistant family members, take the time to explain why the issue of alcohol is sensitive and how its presence could have a negative effect on your newly sober loved one.
3. Find Ways To Replace Alcohol
If alcohol has always been a standard part of your holiday celebrations, its absence is likely to be noticeable. However, there are ways to replace the presence of alcohol at Easter dinner.
For example, you can create non-alcoholic cocktails that offer similar taste and can be served in the same glasses. You can use these drinks for toasts or any other activities that previously involved alcohol.
4. Don’t Make It The Elephant In The Room
One of the issues many recovering addicts experience when they rejoin their families is a feeling of isolation. Family members may be worried about offending or upsetting the individual, so they don’t want to mention rehab, sobriety, or any other related topics.
However, this could lead to hushed conversations that don’t include the individual in recovery, causing that person to feel isolated and uncomfortable.
Encourage your family members to avoid this practice. Most people in recovery will feel more comfortable if they’re able to talk about their experiences in rehab and be included in all conversations relating to them.
5. Respect Your Loved One’s Decisions
In some cases, your loved one may need to make decisions to protect their sobriety that may be upsetting for other people involved in your Easter celebration.
For example, if you choose to serve alcohol and your loved one is feeling triggered at dinner, they may need to leave the situation and seek support from a sponsor. If this occurs, try not to be offended. Instead, be supportive of your loved one’s need for space and help.
6. Make Celebration And Gratitude A Central Component Of Your Event
Every person in recovery knows that each day of sobriety is an opportunity to celebrate life and be grateful for second chances. Be sure that you make thankfulness and the celebration of life a central part of your Easter gathering.
Take the time to let your loved one in recovery know how much they mean to you and your family. Give your loved one a chance to express their own gratitude as well.
Holidays with a loved one fresh out of rehab may be a little more complicated, but they can also represent a wonderful opportunity for family bonding and building intimacy. By following these tips, and being sensitive to your loved one’s needs, you can plan a fun and memorable Easter.Article Sources
National Institute on Alcohol Abuse and Alcoholism - https://pubs.niaaa.nih.gov/publications/arh314/348-361.htm