• Parenting An Addicted Child Through Recovery | Kim Muench | Episode 84

  • No parent dreams of parenting an addicted child. We dream of the joys of parenting and of seeing our child live an amazing life. But sometimes life throws us a curve ball and our teen or twenty-something becomes addicted. It can happen in so many ways but, no matter how it starts, the heartbreak is still there. Mighty Parenting podcast host Sandy Fowler talks with Kim Muench about how to parent an addicted child well. They’ll discuss parenting tips for that as well as loving your child through recovery. Kim has been there and shares her family’s story in this touching and hope-filled conversation.



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    A Favorite Quote from the Show: 

    “Parenting a child with an addiction requires us to love and support them where they are.”

    High Points of Our Conversation on Parenting an Addicted Child:

    loving your child through addictionKim’s aha moment came during a phone call from her son. He called her and said, “Mom, I need help. I spent the day recovering from an alcohol binge and I can’t remember the last three days of my life.” This was the moment when Kim could no longer ignore the signs she had seen.

    The one thing Kim did not do was waste time berating herself. When you love someone who has a problem, there is no time to beat yourself up. It isn’t productive and it won’t help the person with the problem.

    The sign’s of Nick’s alcohol addiction were subtle. His grades didn’t suffer and he didn’t lose friends. However, Kim knew in her gut there was a problem.

    Don’t minimize your feelings. If you know in your gut there is a problem then act on that feeling.

    Kim was scared when she saw signs of Nick’s alcohol abuse. She didn’t know how to solve the problem, thereby increasing the tendency to ignore the problem. 

    Kim believes if she used punitive parenting strategies, grounding her son or taking things away, it wouldn’t have helped. He was using alcohol to medicate feelings he couldn’t share.

    Parenting a child with an addiction requires us to love and support them where they are. We shouldn’t do too much for them. Although it’s hard to watch them struggle, that is how they learn and build resilience.

    One night Kim faced an extremely challenging time. She was sleepless and struggling with her emotions. The next morning she had the realization that she did not know why her son was in this world or what experiences he needed to have. Her job was simply to love him and support him along the way. This was freeing for her as she gave up responsibility for her son’s actions and focused on her own.

    In order to be emotionally available to our teens we need to work on ourselves. This allows us to be present for them, to simply listen without getting angry or overreacting. 

    If you are concerned about your child, have a conversation. Share your concern with them. Tell them what you see and why you are concerned. Do not do this when they are under the influence of drugs or alcohol.

    Adolescence is just a phase of our child’s life. Granted, it’s a long phase, but it’s still just a phase. This is a key time to establish a relationship that is built on love, trust and belief in our child.

    Don’t intervene and fix things when they struggle. Instead ask, “How can I best support you?”

    When we build communication with our teens we want them to open up to us. In order for this to happen they have to feel we’re on their side. They need to be seen and heard for who they are rather than who we want them to be.

    In order to do all of this, we must be emotionally connected to ourselves.

    Resources Mentioned in Show:

    Contact Kim directly to purchase a copy of her book.

    Our Guest: Kim Muench

    Kim Muench parenting coachKim Muench is the mother of five, ages 13-31, and a Jai Institute for Parenting certified parent coach whose favorite population are the parents of preteens and older!   Passionate about educating, supporting and encouraging parents, Kim’s personal approach and the one she coaches parents to adopt is a “with” rather than over relationship.  Kim guides parents with compassion and without judgment into happier, healthier relationships with their sons and daughters because she is a parent who has been through many challenges in her own journey, including teen pregnancy as well as addiction.

    In addition, Kim is a published author who began by writing in 2011 with a memoir entitled My Mothers Footprints: A Story of Faith, Calm, Courage, Patience and Grace, she is currently working on her second book entitled Becoming Me While Raising You, A Mother’s Journey to Self Through Parenting.  Kim has been published on sites such as Suburban Parent Magazine (Dallas/Fort Worth), A Fine Parent, The Conscious Parent Blog, The Huffington Post, and she has a newspaper column in her hometown paper.  Able to work with parents no matter where they live, Kim enjoys facilitating support groups and workshops for parents of teens in the DFW Metroplex.

    To learn more or connect with our guest visit http://realifeparentguide.com