Our Family Group Program is based on the Community Reinforcement and Family Training (CRAFT) approach. It was developed to help family members and friends who would like to improve their relationship with a substance user and want to encourage their loved one to reduce or end his or her substance abuse. CRAFT was originally developed as individual therapy to help concerned significant others (CSOs) engage a substance using loved one in treatment (Meyers & Wolfe, 2004; Smith & Meyers, 2004).
Research on the CRAFT process has shown that non-using CSOs can be a positive and active force for change within the family and build crucial collaborators in the treatment process. This program will help them develop the specific skills needed to positively impact their substance abusing loved one. CSOs are also taught skills necessary to enhance the pleasure of their own lives as they move into this new and more productive process.
The program includes several types of exercises to prepare CSOs for applying their learning to real life situations. When applied conscientiously, these strategies can turn frustration and disappointment into an upbeat and positive tone that fosters a sense of hope, understanding, and opportunity.
While the decision to use these newly acquired skills we teach remains entirely up to the participating CSOs, our therapists will help guide participants on their decision for when the time is right to try something new.
CRAFT is based in specific behavioral principles that have been well researched and found to achieve specific goals that motivate change and that also provide direct benefits to both individuals with substance abuse problems and their CSOs. The program:
Guides domestic violence precautions during the transition to new ways of responding;
Develops an understanding of what leads to substance abuse episodes;
Teaches behavioral and communication skills; and,
Uses positive reinforcement to enhance nondrinking/using behavior.
Uses time out from positive reinforcement for drinking/using behavior.
Allows natural consequences for drinking/using.
Develops reinforcers for themselves and their partners.
Learn how to give effective suggestions of treatment/self-help group involvement for the drinker or drug user if he/she relapses.
Cope with relapse by accessing rapid intake procedures when motivation for treatment emerges.
Assist concerned significant others in how to connect their substance abusing loved one to treatment services at the time when they are interested in treatment.