According to the program of Alcoholics Anonymous (AA), the first step to recovery is admitting you have a problem. Yet, this can be very difficult for many teens, who often live in denial when it comes to addictions.

However, no matter how long and complicated your teen’s addiction story is, there are motivating factors behind it. Typically these reasons fall into one, two or all three of these categories:

  1. Avoidance
  2. Escape
  3. Enhancement

How do teen behavioral specialist come to these conclusions? Well, teens who mask their feelings with addictive substances are doing one of the following three things:

  1. Trying to avoid dealing with something which causes them hurt
  2. Trying to escape from something they’re already dealing with, but hoping to avoid continuing to handle
  3. Trying to enhance, improve or heighten something about themselves

Guiding Your Teen towards the Road to Recovery

In the beginning, addictive substances are good at helping with all three of these categories. However, as time goes on, they no longer work anymore. But, now the teen is addicted to the substance, causing increasingly defiant behavior. So, what should a parent do to guide a teen towards the road to recovery?

When it comes to helping others with addictions, famous quotes can often put fear in the minds of parents. Some insist on what experts call “tough love”, an empowering tool that helps parents, and other co-dependents, learn to just say “no.” Then, there’s the famous consensus that a person “must hit rock bottom” before they can recover. Although this is true for some, it’s simply not the case with everyone.

This is because different people are motivated by different people, places, things, events, reasons, factors, etc… Some people simply need the promise of heaven in order to “straighten up”, while others need the “hell scared out of them” to work towards being clean. Either way, your job as a parent of an addicted teen is to be supportive, without being judgmental.

This helps to decrease your teen’s relapse rate, according to teen defiance specialists. Plus, the powers of addiction can be overwhelming for the strongest, smartest of adults. So, of course teens in trouble due to addiction will need family support, especially from their parents, in order to have a healthy, long-lasting recovery from addiction, and eventually defiance.

3 Stages of Recovery for Defiant Teens with Addictions

Today, courts tend to demand that criminals enter rehabilitation centers and recovery programs to get help for their addictions. These people have two choices, get help from a structured program, or go to jail, plain and simple.

Yet, there’s also that large group of people, including teens, who are actually in treatment just to get loved ones off their backs. There are three stages of recovery that these people generally fall into:

  1. Defiance – This category is for those who have yet to admit to others, or themselves, that they have an addiction problem – The defiant behavior causes them to say “no” to recovery, on the inside and on the outside.
  2. Compliance – These are the people who know how to “comply” with the counselors wishes. They say whatever loved ones, and counselors, want to hear, quite convincingly. They say “yes” on the outside, but inside, they’re really saying, “no.”
  3. Acceptance – This stage of recovery is for those who truly believe they are addicted, that they addiction is harming them and they can make a full recovery. They say “yes” to recovery both inside and out.

So, will your teen’s defiant behavior hinder him/her from getting addiction help? Are you worried that you’ll have to force your child into treatment? Contact to talk with a counselor about Addiction and Defiance in teens today.