Supporting a loved one who is experiencing substance misuse and addiction can be challenging. As a concerned significant other, you may not feel fully equipped or prepared to support your loved one on their road to recovery.
Community Reinforcement Approach and Family Training (CRAFT), developed by Dr. Robert Meyers, is an evidence-based, skill-building intervention for concerned significant others (CSOs, i.e., parents, family members, caregivers, friends) who have an individual in their life (identified individual) who faces difficulties with substance misuse and addiction, including those with co-occurring mental health challenges.
The overarching goals of CRAFT are:
CRAFT has demonstrated efficacy in helping get the identified individual into some form of treatment and has also demonstrated benefit for CSOs themselves (increased sense of independence, general well-being, reduction in symptoms of anxiety and depression). The role of CSOs are especially important for adolescents and young adults since the CSOs often play an instrumental role in whether they do or do not receive treatment, remain in treatment, proceed with aftercare planning, and pursue treatment again if there is a recurrence. CSOs also receive support across multiple areas including: self-care, how to find and engage in pleasurable activities, problem-solving and goal-setting.
The overarching goal is to support CSOs in creating an environment where the identified individual is motivated to reduce or discontinue their use, while also recognizing that CSOs also need to take care of themselves. This includes CSOs gaining psychoeducation on substance misuse and addiction, as well as communication skills to improve communication with their identified individual and support healthy, non-substance using behaviors. CSOs also explore ways to significantly reduce the tension, frustration, and feelings of helplessness they may be experiencing.
CRAFT may be offered in individual or group sessions with approximately 12 weekly sessions.
Recommended treatment programs for your loved one include: Encompass, an evidence-based treatment for co-occurring substance abuse and mental health disorders.