Family recovery from addiction

Alcohol addiction.
Alcohol addiction.
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A new national survery on what addiction and recovery means for an addict’s family has been launched at Sheffield Hallam University.

The Family Life in Recovery project - the first of its kind in the UK - is open to anyone who considers themselves a family member, friend or loved one of a person who uses or is in recovery from alcohol and other drugs addictions.

It is hoped that the survey will provide insights in to the actual experiences of family members during and after active addiction.

The survey is a joint study from Sheffield Hallam’s Helena Kennedy Centre for International Justice, and Adfam, the national charity working to improve life for families affected by drug and alcohol use, and is funded by Alcohol Research UK. The results are expected to be published later this year.

Professor David Best, project lead, head of criminology at Sheffield Hallam University, and a prominent figure in the international research and policy movement around recovery, said: “Much is known about the economic and social costs of addiction and problematic drug use, but we know very little about what happens to family members of those using or in recovery, and how they manage their own wellbeing through this incredibly stressful and challenging process. The purpose of this study is to gather information about the experiences of family members, and to help, support and encourage others faced with the same challenges.

“The survey will explore what people can do to look after themselves and to support the person in recovery, which is particularly pertinent at a time of personalised budgets and reductions in specialist care and support.

“The results of the survey will help identify which services are urgently needed for families of people recovering from drug and alcohol addiction, whilst also giving a voice to a disempowered population.”

Sheffield Hallam University published the first national UK survey of addiction recovery experiences in 2015.