Knowing a loved one is in rehab can be a daunting thing. You wonder how your loved one is doing, if they are finding it helpful or if they simply hate the experience. At most rehabs, there is a communication wall between you and your loved one. Because of this, it can be hard to know how they are doing while there. Alternatively, if you and your loved one are in the process of choosing a rehab facility, knowing what the common rules are in a rehab can help you decide on the right one for them.
1. No Cell Phones or Computers This rule is the most common and there are two important reasons for this. The first being that your technology is a distraction. Think about how often your phone or computer consumes your day. Consider how many times you texted, checked social media, responded to an email or watched a video. Now, think about how you could use that time differently. The concept of a rehab facility is to immerse yourself into recovery completely, and if your attention is pulled in a million other directions, you will not be able to focus on that crucial task. The second reason is that you are not the only one present at this facility. Since most phones have cameras and video capability now, it stops sensitive information from being released and protects patient privacy.
2. Restricted Entertainment This rule is approached in one of two ways. One is a very strict, no entertainment whatsoever approach. That means that there will be no books that aren't spiritual, no TV or movies and no music. The second method is still quite strict to some, but you only have access to pre-approved material that has been thoroughly vetted for possible triggers. Whichever approach they choose, the underlying concept is the same, to drive your attention to recovery and not external factors.
3. No Fraternizing This rule is usually common among all facilities. There is usually a total ban on romantic relationships while your loved one is in rehab. It would be considered unwise to start a romantic attachment while in recovery as one of the more common pieces of advice out there (and also part of some 12 step programs) is that they should not make any huge, life-altering decisions during their first year of sobriety. A relationship is certainly considered a life-altering decision.
4. Mandatory Attendance It does not matter if the rehab facility has a closed campus or an open one. It does not matter if its schedule has a more fluid and holistic approach or a more rigid and militaristic one. One thing that is true across the board is that there will be some aspect of the daily schedule that is mandatory to focus their attention on recovery. Sometimes all they will have to do is go to group or individual therapy and the rest of the day is theirs to create, while most will hand them a strict daily schedule that they must abide. The general idea of these rules is always to keep the focus of your loved one on the important reason why they are there - to recover. It is also important to remember that these are not typical of every facility, these are merely the most common and are important to keep in mind when helping your loved one choose the right facility for them. When exploring rehab options, connecting with the right treatment solution to achieve recovery is crucial. A free service like Freedom From Addiction can be of help to explore the different treatment options available.
For 24/7 assistance, call 1.855.RECOVER or 1.855.732.6837.
Sydney DeZinno is a writer from Tucson, AZ. A graduate of the University of Arizona, she an active advocate that is passionate about addiction recovery and helping those in crisis.
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