This week, our family support group discussed continued self-care, externalizing your loved one from their addiction, and the three C’s of Al-Anon: cause, control, and cure.


Self-care is crucial for both addiction recovery and prevention. Understanding addiction is essential, as it is a complex condition that affects individuals physically, emotionally, and socially. Recognizing the causes, symptoms, and different types of addiction—such as substance, behavioral, and process addictions—is fundamental. Factors like genetics, environment, and personal circumstances significantly influence the development of addiction.

Self-care plays a vital role in addiction recovery. It helps maintain overall well-being by reducing stress and anxiety, which are common challenges in recovery. Self-care is also crucial for relapse prevention, as it minimizes triggers that could lead to a relapse. Effective self-care strategies include ensuring proper nutrition and hydration to nourish the body, engaging in regular physical activity to improve mood and reduce cravings, and practicing mindfulness and meditation to calm the mind. Additionally, developing healthy coping mechanisms is essential for managing stress positively.

Self-care for loved ones of those struggling with addiction is essential for rebuilding relationships, focusing on self-care to restore trust and establish healthier boundaries. Effective communication is key to helping loved ones prioritize their well-being while maintaining meaningful connections. Avoiding burnout is crucial, as taking care of oneself enables better support and presence for the addicted loved one. Remember, self-care isn’t selfish—it’s vital for the well-being of both you and your loved one.



In the journey of supporting a loved one through addiction, externalizing the addiction is crucial. This concept involves viewing the addiction as separate from the person, which helps us detach from destructive behaviors while maintaining empathy.

The Power of Perspective

By recognizing addiction as an external force, we can support our loved ones more effectively without enabling or becoming enmeshed in codependency. This shift also mitigates the cycle of blame and shame often linked to addiction, fostering a more compassionate environment conducive to recovery.

Setting Healthy Boundaries

Externalizing addiction empowers us to establish boundaries that protect our well-being and maintain our personal identity outside the realm of addiction. It encourages a balanced approach where support is provided thoughtfully, preserving the integrity of other relationships.

Moving Forward

While externalizing addiction isn’t a cure-all, it offers a valuable framework for handling the complexities of addiction with clarity and compassion. It’s a process that benefits from supportive therapies and groups, helping both individuals and their families navigate the path to recovery.


The 3’C of Al-Anon

In Al-Anon, the 3 Cs serve as fundamental principles for supporting friends and families coping with a loved one’s substance use disorder (SUD).

The first principle, “We Didn’t Cause It,” emphasizes that the individual’s drinking problem is not our fault. Recognizing addiction as a disease, we understand that we did not play a role in causing it. This understanding helps remove blame and allows us to focus on our own recovery.

The second principle, “We Can’t Control It,” highlights our lack of power to control the other person’s desire to use/abuse substances. Trying to manipulate or change their behavior is futile, and accepting this truth frees us from unnecessary stress and frustration. We can only control how we choose to participate in our loved one’s addiction and recovery.

The third principle, “We Can’t Cure It,” acknowledges that SUDs are an illness that cannot be cured through any known medical remedies. Our efforts won’t magically fix the problem, so instead, we learn to support our loved ones without enabling destructive behavior. These Three Cs guide us toward healthier coping strategies and self-care.