Building an ecosystem of understanding and trust

Journey to Freedom

8 Week Online Education and Support Series for Professionals as well as Friends and Family affected by a loved one’s addiction.

Starts 9 July 2022

Home » Support for loved ones

what you should know

At Cedars we believe that addiction is a family illness. Despite this, family members and loved ones are often ignored and neglected in the treatment of addiction.
If you are a family member, colleague or friend of someone that abuses drugs/alcohol, you may feel frustrated, hopeless and alone. You are possibly at this point because you have run out of options and nothing you have tried has worked.
We believe that family members and loved ones should also receive treatment for their own benefit and healing. In turn, this healing process helps to better support the addict in their recovery process.
The Cedars Family Team is here to equip you with the tools you need to cope and heal throughout your loved one’s journey to recovery. This support is available not just to family members of Cedars’ clients, but to anyone in need of support through a loved one’s addiction recovery process.

family support services


Weekly progress feedback


Family Workshops


Family Counselling


Family Support Groups


Family Intervention


After Treatment Integration Support


Telephonic or Virtual Consultations


Monthly Newsletter

and support Forums
and Workshops

Upon their return from treatment, your loved one may feel vulnerable, confused, even awkward around their family. You, as a family member may experience feelings of fear and apprehension. Common questions include “what now?” and “what can I do to support my loved one in their recovery?” We understand this can be a daunting experience – therefore you may wish to consider our Reintegration Programs and Family Workshops for family members.
Our monthly Family Workshop is available to immediate family members of in-patients, free of charge. The workshop focuses on educating you about the disease of addiction as well as our treatment process. We also provide information on additional support structures that are available to the family. Please book your slot with the Family Liaison team.
Do you have a loved one that struggles with addiction that is not an in-patient? You can still benefit from our Family Support Program – empower yourself with knowledge, learn more about addiction and how it affects the family unit and get on the path of discovery and acceptance. Contact our Family Liaison Team for information and support.

how to know if you’d benefit from counselling

If you answer “yes” to 2 or more of the questions below, we recommend setting up a confidential counselling session with our specialist Family Support team.
  • Do you regularly feel hurt, embarrassed or distressed by your loved one’s behaviour?
  • Do you dread holidays and special occasions because you are worried that they will ruin them?
  • Do you feel guilt and shame often?
  • Do you feel responsible for their using?
  • Do you often prefer to stay away from home rather than spend time with the them?
  • Do you discourage friends/family members from visiting because of their behaviour?
  • Do you feel like there is no one who understands?
  • Have you considered calling the Police because of their behaviour?
  • Do you find yourself covering up for the addict/alcoholic?
  • Do you feel everything would be OK if they would just stop
    drinking/using ?
  • Do you feel it is because you are not enough?
  • Do you tell lies to cover up for your loved one?
  • Do you feel angry, confused or depressed most of the time?
  • Do you feel you are ‘walking on eggshells’ because you fear you might cause them to drink/use or fearful of an angry outburst?

meet the team

Carmen Lombard

Carmen Lombard

Family Liaision Manager and Addiction Counsellor

Carmen arrived at The Cedars in November 2009 feeling exhausted and out of all options on how to stay clean and was tired of ‘existing’ rather than living.  Carmen completed…
Natalie Atmore

Natalie Atmore

Head Addiction Counsellor and Family Liaison

Natalie came into The Cedars South Coast in February 2006 feeling completely hopeless, having given up at leading a normal life or being happy. She completed The Cedars program, successfully…
Robynne Dreyer

Robynne Dreyer

Family Liaison and Trainee Addiction Counsellor

Robynne travelled from Canada to receive treatment for addiction at The Cedars in 2020. She had reached a point in her life where she had no choice but to admit…
Monique Kurczewski

Monique Kurczewski

Family Liaison

Monique is the newest addition to the Midlands team. She studied law, completing her LLB, however struggled to cope with a prescription medication addiction. She attended The Cedars twice, finding…
Svenja Klückow

Svenja Klückow

Mental Wellbeing Counsellor

Svenja joined the Cedars Team in 2022 as Mental Wellbeing Counsellor for individuals, families and groups. Svenja completed her master’s degree in Psychology and her training in Systemic Counselling in…

family FAQ’s

When can I talk to my family member while he/she is in treatment?

These visitation and call rules apply to Cedars South Coast only will need to revise as follows:
A weekly visit is permitted after the client has completed seven days in treatment, by prior arrangement. You are welcome to bring picnic food and enjoy the scenery. A visitor that is deemed to be a risk to any of The Cedars Facilities or its clients may be asked to vacate the premises.

When can I visit my family member while he/she is in treatment?

Visitors are permitted on Sundays between 12-4 pm after the client’s first seven days in treatment. You are permitted to bring a picnic, use the braais and visit your loved one at any of our beautiful facilities. Please note that all visits need to be arranged beforehand with the client’s counsellor. Any visitor that may be deemed a risk to The Cedars facility or its clients may be asked to vacate the premises.

How can I find out how my loved one is doing?

Your loved one will be asked to appoint a family member to receive feedback from The Cedars Family Liaison Team. Appropriate feedback is given weekly for this appointed family member. If required, you can also call the office of the facility your loved one resides at to enquire after them.

How do I support my family member when they are back at home?

The Cedars Family Liaison Team will do their best to empower you with the knowledge you need to provide a supportive environment for your loved one upon their return. Hence we offer a weekly family meeting Q&A via Zoom between 10am and 12 as well as a monthly family workshop held between 9am and 11:30am, also conducted via the Zoom platform. It’s important to be able to spot red flags in the behaviour or environment of your loved one and we are here to help you learn how to.

How can I be sure my loved one has everything they need for treatment?

The Cedars Treatment Facilities provides full room and board and all the required literature and stationery for our life-changing treatment program. Halal or Vegetarian diets are catered for upon request. At an additional cost, luxuries such as tuckshop, cigarettes and basic necessities such as toiletries can be purchased on site or via a special shopping trip. For a list of things to bring, please follow this link. (link to PDF). Please enquire directly with our office if you need more information.

Can you tell me some more about The Cedars Addiction Treatment Program?

Our life-changing treatment program utilises a multidisciplinary team that consists of medical doctors, social workers, psychologists, occupational therapists, nurses and internationally qualified addiction counsellors. Our program is based on the 12-Steps, group therapy, one on one counselling, sessions with the psychologist and social worker. Upon arrival, our medical doctor will assess your physical condition and previous diagnoses. If necessary, stabilisation medication will be prescribed. Once ready, you’ll be encouraged to join the daily groups and activities. Provided you are physically able, moderate exercise is encouraged, and on a weekly basis, our onsite gym equipment, yoga and aerobics instructors will help you get the colour back in your cheeks. Our dietician-approved menu will restore your energy balance and help you feel whole again! Each of our facilities is in a beautiful part of South Africa – lush gardens, exquisite sunsets and the sounds of nature abound.

What makes you different to other treatment facilities?

The Cedars has 19 years of experience in helping people find a solution to substance abuse. Many of our recovered patients have experienced a drastic improvement in many aspects – an ability to enjoy life once more, overcome challenges and foster healthy relationships. The Cedars approach also aims to help family members learn the truth about addiction and it’s treatment – between our friendly and knowledgeable family liaison team and our internationally qualified addiction counsellors, help is always on hand.

additional family support resources

30 Minute Complimentary Consultation

Many family members carry guilt around the fact that their loved one struggles with addiction.  These feelings can be very difficult to deal with. Often the first step is reaching out for help and support.  The Cedars Family Team offer a number of professional services to assist you on your journey of healing.  

We offer a 30 minute complimentary consultation to allow a family member or loved one to share their feelings, concerns and struggles with a professional counsellor. Counselling provides one with the full attention of the clinician in order to maximize the amount of time your individual issues are addressed during the treatment sessions.

Should you wish to book your free consultation, please contact us.

The Cedars Family Division

enquire now