A Letter to Families

Welcome to Providence Farm community.

We look forward to sharing the next step of your family’s recovery. We know that watching your son’s transition from the “safety” of primary treatment can feel scary for their loved ones.

Every aspect of Providence’s program structure has been developed by exploring vast long-term recovery research, collaborating with dozens of treatment program professionals, and – most importantly – through our first-hand clinical experience with countless recovering young people. With this in mind, we’d like to share some thoughts to help you better understand and navigate your son’s time at Providence. We hope that you will grow to have great trust in our professional staff, and faith in the program. This “faith in the process” will have great impact on your family’s recovery.

Although outpatient therapy is integral to Providence programming, we are not – nor do we aim to be – a treatment program.

While we have structure, rules and programming, we do not wish to fill your son’s entire day with Providence-related activities. Our intention is to support your sons as they learn to do everything sober, including go to work, class, to dinner with friends, sporting events, watch Netflix in bed, and go to the grocery store. We want to show residents the freedom inherent in living a vibrant life in recovery.

In this spirit, activities that support and promote recovery (meetings, step-work, sponsors, counseling, sober fellowship) come first.

Then, as residents grow stronger, they are supported in our expectation that they attend school, work, internships, community service, or whatever step they wish to take in moving forward with their life, while maintaining recovery as their first priority. We respect our residents’ goals, and will celebrate and support the uniqueness of their paths.

Watching your loved one transition to independence and increased freedom is also a transition for their families, but it is an imperative aspect of the recovery process. We will show our residents that their life in recovery will be more attractive and compelling than the using lifestyle it replaces. At times, your son may feel held back by the “rules” of the recovery community, and may push for more independence. Providence staff will work with residents as individuals, to determine the level of structure and programming that is right for them.

Providence staff are with our residents every day. You will receive a scheduled phone call from our clinical or case management staff weekly, and are encouraged to contact us with questions as they arise. We are committed to being honest and direct in our communications, and we invite the same from you. Parents frequently ask how they can support their loved ones. Here are our requests:

  • Attend Al-Anon or Families Anonymous Meetings.
  • Participate in your own individual and family counseling.
  • Attend Providence parent support meetings.
  • Please avoid the temptation to call your son every day. Allow space to work on your recovery while he works on his.
  • Avoid the urge to attempt to solve or rescue your son from his discomfort.
  • Uncomfortable emotions are part of early recovery, and part of life. Learning to manage discomfort is crucial to recovery.
  • Be patient. Recovery is a life-long journey.
  • Allow your son to solve his own problems, and do things for himself. We are here to support him in learning how, and to promote a lifetime of independence and efficacy.

Help residents practice gratitude for what they have. Please don’t send additional money or gifts without first consulting with Providence staff.

Early recovery can be an emotional roller coaster for families. Take care of yourself, and make every effort to stay off the ride. Your life and your happiness is of great value.

A note about spending money:

Your son will have access to spending money, at an amount agreed upon between program staff and families at intake. This money is intended for food, entertainment and other miscellaneous items. Having money will help residents negotiate immediate decisions, and allow them to enjoy sober activities and build connections with their peers. Should your son begin working, the amount provided by families for spending money will be appropriately revisited. Providence programming includes significant education and discussion about budgeting, financial independence, responsibility with other people’s money, meal planning/grocery shopping and understanding “needs versus wants.”

Thank you for trusting us to guide and support your family.

We encourage you to take advantage of all the family support opportunities Providence and our amazing support community have to offer.

Welcome to the Providence community!