Group Activities for Families in Recovery offers therapists a wealth of activities designed to help families struggling with addiction address problem areas of functioning, and ultimately shift from dysfunctional patterns to healthy living. Written by expert practitioners in family-oriented substance abuse treatment programs, this text focuses on group therapy as a key component to treatment.

Beginning with a brief overview of the issues involved in working from a systemic family therapy perspective of addiction, the text discusses practical guidelines for working with families in groups and how to best utilize the exercise in the book. The collection of 30 group activities are suitable for a variety of family-oriented substance abuse treatment groups. They are divided into seven sections covering the key issues of:

1. Family Structure; 2. Family Identity; 3. Sober Fun; 4. Toward Health; 5. Anger Management; 6. Healthy Communication; 7. Parenting

The activities are varied and include topics presented through expressive arts (drawing, writing, acting), game-playing, problem solving, enactments, worksheets, and roleplaying. The activities can be used individually, incorporated into another program, or stand alone as a 16-week (or longer) program. They can also be adapted for use in groups where children or present, or for adult-family groups.

Healthy Helping: Activity Title: Healthy Helping Worksheet: Activity Mode: Worksheet

Healthy Helping: Activity Title: Healthy Helping Worksheet: Activity Mode: Worksheet

Healthy helping: Activity title: Healthy helping worksheet: Activity mode: Worksheet


Many families with substance abuse struggle with knowing how to help the addicted family member. They want to know what is going “too far” and how to set appropriate boundaries. The commonly used term codependent is often, in our experience, felt to be insulting by family members, who, as they point out, love the addicted family member and are very genuinely trying to help but just don't know how.

This worksheet provides a noncondemning approach to identifying what we call “unhealthy helping”—areas in which family members try to help the substance abuser but do so in ways that actually work to maintain the addiction. The activity aids ...

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