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Family Therapy in Wyoming


Because Wyoming is a thinly populated state, the numbers of people affected by addiction are smaller than most other states. However, addiction still remains a substantial problem that affects not only those who are taking excessive quantities of alcohol or drugs, but also their loved ones. Family therapy in Wyoming can help addicts and their families to deal with addiction and mend the relationships that were broken by it.


Based on figures published by the Substance Abuse and Mental Health Services Administration and the National Institute on Alcohol Abuse and Addiction, just under 12,000 Wyoming residents abused prescription drugs in the last year, while almost 30,400 have problems with alcohol. A significant proportion of these will be addicted, with profound consequences for their families.


Family therapy in Wyoming can help relatives of addicts cope much better with the situation. Family therapy can also treat emotional and psychological disorders that befall those who must share their lives with addicts. Finally, family therapy can serve as an educational aid to give families a much more profound understanding of what addicts are going through, while teaching addicts about the dreadful effect their behavior is having in the home. 


Problems Caused by Addicts’ Behavior

Every addict is different, and some addicts in Wyoming will be able to manage their addiction without causing serious issues to their family. Unfortunately, they are a tiny minority. Most addicts will find themselves on a downward spiral leading to ruin and possibly premature death.


Financial difficulties frequently accompany addiction problems. Addicts need to buy alcohol or drugs to feed their habit, and it can become increasingly difficult for them to get enough money as their intake of the addictive substance increases. They will divert funds from other essential items to buy alcohol or drugs. Children can go hungry, and they can be poorly dressed. Addicts may even stop paying vital bills like utilities, and mortgage and loans. When the latter happens, they face eviction and repossession.


Addicts may start to steal from relatives, friends and neighbors. This can mean the entire family being made unwelcome in other people’s homes or stores. Addicts may have to face fines or jail terms for theft, DUI, assault, public disorder and other offenses associated with being full of drugs or alcohol.


Codependency is a common problem caused by an addict’s behavior. Relatives develop emotional difficulties as they try to cover up for addicts’ behavior. Psychologists have identified stereotypical roles that family members adopt. Some of the commonest ones include:

  1. The addict: He or she takes the central role, with all other family activities revolving around him or her.
  1. The hero: This is the role title given to the person who tries hard to keep everything working as if it were a normal family.
  1. The mascot: This person tries to portray everything in a light-hearted fashion by frequently making jokes, including poking fun at the addict.
  1. The scapegoat: This person will often engage in difficult or unruly behavior as a means of drawing attention away from the addict.
  1. The enabler: This person adopts a caretaker role, and will make excuses for the actions of other family members, even when those actions are harmful. The enabler will even supply the addict with drugs or alcohol.

Dealing with Problems

Families need therapy to break the codependency. They do not realize their behavior is harmful to themselves, and that their actions are doing nothing to truly help the addict. Addicts will be less likely to seek help when codependent relatives play the stereotypical roles.


Family therapy in Wyoming can help all family members, including addicts, to get a more realistic picture of the situation, and help them to deal with the issues. Addicts will be made aware of the need to get treatment, and other members will be educated on how to help them start on the path to recovery, and to stave off relapse.


Contact an addiction specialist today to learn if family therapy is right for you.