This letter is written in support of Homeward Bound and all of the parents who are in the recovery process with their son or daughter. For our family, one of the most frightening events to consider in the recovery process was the actual return home of our daughter. We had taken great comfort in knowing for the past few months, she was in the hands of talented professionals who knew much more about substance abuse and recovery than we did. This was true of the youth transport program who escorted her, the terrific wilderness program she was sent to, and the fantastic recovery program in Utah. To even fathom having her back in the home with us was terrifying to imagine. We had been through so much with her, and were very much rookies in this painful, but critical, recovery process. Additionally, we had made such large financial commitments and sacrifices for her recovery that it was difficult to justify making yet another. Enter Homeward Bound.
Homeward Bound was recommended to us by an industry professional – who noted all of our commitments and sacrifices for a healthy future for our daughter may deteriorate in a matter of minutes, hours, days, or months once she returned to our home. No sales pressure was applied, just wisdom and concern offered from someone who knew exactly what we were dealing with. The other important point was our own emotional health and future. We needed support, regardless of whether or not our daughter would make a full recovery. We did not have the knowledge or resources to deal with the scope of the substance abuse issue and dual diagnosis of depression we were presented with. Homeward Bound offered a promise of continuing support and resources, and a dedicated professional to extend recovery to our entire family. It was this promise of – and very real need for – ongoing support that finally sealed the deal for us.
Prior to speaking with Homeward Bound, we wondered:
- Will they really be able to help from a distance?
- Can they help my spouse/ex-spouse and I work together as parents?
- Is it really necessary to have aftercare support? Our daughter seems to be doing so well.
- It seems awkward to have people (the Home Team) come to our home and hear about our daughter’s journey. Is it worth it to do that?
- Will it be awkward to have someone come to my home? Will it be worth the time and cost to do that?
Our concerns melted away when we spoke with Tim Thayne of Homeward Bound. He didn’t know if we were going to be one of his families, yet he offered real guidance, comfort, and wisdom to ease our angst. After completing the due diligence to move forward, we found some of the most responsive, caring individuals we had ever met. With the guidance of Homeward Bound, we gathered our Home Team to help us when our daughter came home. As we worked towards this family event, our therapist worked directly with our daughter to prepare her for her return home, which she was every bit as nervous about as we were. Expectations were set, a family contract was negotiated, and our daughter was delivered home safely to hugs and tears with kind, caring hands.
The Home Team event was joyous and productive. Family members and friends offered love, support, and accountability. A separate meeting was held with our daughter’s friends who are now part of the Home Team and working closely with our family. We participated in parent and family sessions that invited unity, even with my ex-husband. My teen son also participated, and we began to coalesce together in peace as a family – instead of being splintered apart as we had in the past. We now participate in weekly family calls with our terrific HB coach, as does my daughter who has very much bonded with him. Everyone feels loved and supported, and we now have someone to walk this recovery journey with us as we work through its inevitable challenges.
In short, we have been able to replicate and continue the recovery process in our home. We have healed as a family, and are now watching in joy as our daughter blossoms towards her full recovery. She is now in college, volunteering, attending meetings, seeing her therapist weekly, and following through on family responsibilities. It is nothing short of a miracle. I thank Homeward Bound for helping us to save her life and our sanity. I encourage other parents to consider them too.
In gratitude and sincerity,