If you live in Colorado, you might know about the worrying trend of increasing substance misuse disorders in the state. This is particularly true in Castle Rock. However, since this is an issue plaguing the entire nation, I will speak more generally for some portions of this article.
Maybe you’re considering rehab but are worried about the ramifications. There are questions we have to ask beforehand, after all. What if I lose my job because I check into rehab? What if my family and friends judge me or disown me? These are just some of many things you’ll have to think about.
I’ll go over some of these questions and more as we proceed. Either way, you do not need to be ashamed for seeking out these services. It is a good first step in recovery.
Can I Get Fired for Checking into Rehab?
The simple answer to this question is no. However, let me explain in a bit more depth why this is the case. For the most part, we can thank the Family and Medical Leave Act. For more details on this law you can check here: https://www.dol.gov/general/topic/benefits-leave/fmla.
The Family and Medical Leave Act states that you are legally allowed reasonable accommodations for up to twelve weeks of unpaid leave. It was largely established to ensure that families had options for a healthy balance between life and work, as well as promoting gender equality in the work force.
It covers four main areas. These are giving birth and caring for a newborn child, for placing the newborn of an employee for adoption or foster care, for an employee caring for a family member, or if the employee themselves has a serious medical condition. Addiction is considered a “serious health condition” in these terms.
There is an important caveat to keep in mind with all of this. You must have worked for your employer for at least twelve months. You also will need to have worked for 1,250 hours over that year long period. Keep all of this in mind before absolutely relying on the FMLA to cover your stay for rehab.
What’s nice is that this period of protection is reset each calendar year. Thus, you should make sure that you follow the formal protocol for requesting leave of absence when you go to rehab. You are protected under FMLA but only if you specifically request the accommodations.
Will My Loved Ones Judge Me?
This is a bit harder to answer. Sadly, there is no guarantee that the answer is no. Each person has their own relationships with their family. Obviously, I cannot speak for everyone.
That being said, ideally the answer is no. What a lot of us don’t think about is how addiction impacts the family. Unfortunately, they usually have some serious severe consequences.
Some people who might be in the line of fire are children, parents, and spouses. Many families end up getting into arguments with each other. That’s a significant strain on relationships, of course. A lot of family members may not trust the person with the substance misuse disorder, for example.
Impacts on Children
This is perhaps the most severe way that substance misuse can impact a family. For some fast statistics you can check out this article, but I can explain in more general terms. Particularly, I will discuss how the child of an addict might be effected.
This sort of situation often leads to childhood neglect. Approximately one in five children now lives in a home with at least one parent who is addicted to illegal substances. I would argue that this tragedy is unacceptable, which is part of why I believe rehab services are so important.
Unfortunately, children who grow up in a home where they are exposed to drugs often are more likely to start using drugs themselves. Also, they are much more likely to be abused in some form or another, be it via neglect, sexual abuse, or physical abuse of another variety.
Most children are heavily influenced by their surroundings. This means that they might develop the same behavior patterns that are being modeled to them by their parents. They are much more likely to repeat behaviors such as drinking or violence if they see it.
Impacts on Spouses
Many marriages end due to a substance abuse disorder. Drug addiction can lead to distrust between partners. Unfortunately, this is not good for a healthy relationship. It can in fact be devastating.
Most partnerships are built off of good communication. You don’t want to risk that all for a drug. The pain of a failed marriage will probably last a lot longer than any temporary discomfort that comes from rehabilitation services.
Going to Rehab
Now, there are many options for rehab centers. If you’re in Colorado you might consider some rehab in Castle Rock, especially if you are in that area. Either way, you should definitely consider checking into a center and getting services.
You may want to select one of the thirty day, sixty day, or ninety day treatment options. You should think about this carefully and make sure it will fall within your protected twelve weeks from the FMLA.
Make sure that you think about all of this before you decide to check in. It’s probably a good idea to call the center that you are considering and inquire for more information. Guarantee that you will receive the amount of care that you require.
It’s a good idea to be up front and honest about what you are struggling with. Do not lie to “save face,” because it will only hurt you in the end. Tell the providers what substances you are struggling with. Be it alcohol, heroin, prescription opioids, cocaine, cannabis, hallucinogens, or something else – you deserve to have personalized care.
Detoxing and going to rehabilitation centers can be scary. Opening ourselves up and being vulnerable in that manner isn’t the most pleasant thing in the world. That being said, in the end, you won’t regret getting help.