Super Bowl Party Tips for Families in Recovery

Are you throwing a Super Bowl party or a Mardi Gras bash this year? Are you reluctant to invite your addicted or newly recovering loved one? Hosting addiction can be challenging, and dealing with family and loved ones can be mentally stressful for those of us in recovery. Whether it’s a daughter, mother, or spouse, addiction’s effects stretch far beyond the person using. Addiction alters the lives of anyone who loves the person. And because we love them, we allow them to live in our homes and include them in our life events (weddings, reunions, etc.) We host Super Bowl parties, and holiday dinners and extend an invitation to the addict.

Let’s discuss some “dos” and “don’ts” that we can use when hosting those battling addiction or new to recovery. These tips aren’t just for tailgating and family gatherings. They can be used in our everyday lives.

Hosting Dos

  • Talk to your loved one struggling with addiction beforehand, ask them how you can help them feel comfortable at the gathering, and get on board with their exit strategy (see or post for those in recovery).
  • Serve alcohol-free options
  • Keep topics of conversation light and polite.
  • Be aware of triggers.
  • Have Narcan on hand
  • Practice acceptance. This doesn’t mean you like or approve of their behavior.

As hosts, we must be mindful to keep topics of conversation light and polite. We should make it a point to always serve non-alcoholic beverage options because some people don’t drink, and some of us can’t. Need drink ideas? Check our website, I’ve posted some recipes below. If you own a business that hosts events, it would be a great idea to keep Narcan on hand. (Do a Google search for local harm reduction sites, centers, or groups).

“You are not obligated to continue holiday traditions that leave you broke, overwhelmed, or tired.” ~Sammy Rabbit

Please familiarize yourself with your loved ones triggers. If you have family members in active addiction, keep Narcan in your home even if opiates aren’t their drug of choice because it’s the antidote for fentanyl overdoses. It requires no medical training, can often be received for free without questions, and saves lives. I wouldn’t be here trying to make the holidays memorable for these two little angels robbed of their mother due to a fatal overdose. A death that could have been prevented if her “friends” had some of these inhalers.

Hosting Donts

  • Shaming and judgment: keep in mind that addiction is a disease.
  • Confront them while they’re using: talk to them when you can have a rational conversation.
  • Focusing on the negative: don’t attempt to preach or try to assert control.
  • Making assumptions: know that the addict is in the grip of something much bigger than themselves.
  • Give unwanted advice and criticism: endless pleading is not helpful or effective. In the end, an addict will tell you what you want to hear, then go back to business as usual.
  • Bringing up the past: a guilt trip implies that the person being guilted is acting deliberately or out of malice. It assumes that they have some control over their addiction. An active addict does not

💋NR (follow me on Facebook & Instagram)

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Norma Ramirez

Norma Ramirez is a marketing and media relations assistant at Glow Stream TV.

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