Thanksgiving is in TWO days - what challenges does this holiday pose for you?



What special challenges does Thanksgiving pose for you, your loved one, and your family? What can you do to anticipate + eliminate one or more triggers to possibly positively influence your loved one’s use this holiday?

Substance Use Disorder and the holidays - how are you this season?

I don’t like the holidays anymore, mainly because my older son is no longer living, and he was the one that made us all laugh, and appreciated the food, and entertained us in one way or another. This year I am bummed because my brother and my living son HATE each other and we are having Thanksgiving at my brother’s house.

What I would like to do is not attend since my son is not welcome, but my brother has some serious health issues and won’t be around for too many more holidays (his doctor says 2-3 years, but you never know, it could be sooner or later). My brother is an alcoholic, my son is a drug addict. It basically sucks.


Oh geez, I imagine that’s really hard. Where will your son be for the holiday?


@AnthonysMom it sounds like the holidays bring up a lot for you. One brief suggestion is to try and use the memory of your older son to bring the laughter and joy back into the holiday season. I’ve found focusing on the positive can sometimes help. Sending you :yellow_heart:


Thank you. The first year I set a place for him at the table but that wasn’t a good idea. I do carry him in my heart and now I smile when I think of him rather than cry. I hear his laugh, see that smiling handsome face with the mischief in his eyes and can almost feel his tight long hugs :slight_smile:


My fiance and I really just try to enjoy the holiday season. Going out and doing things, decorating and just having fun with it. Staying positive and enjoying I feel really helps distract and deal with the depression. Things we avoid though is definitely drinking, no good has come from adding alcohol into the mix. As long as we do that I feel things will go well.


Thanks for sharing @AnthonysMom - I have to say that I love reading about your words about your eldest son. This reminds me of my husband. Troubled past but the most creative, entertaining and loving man. My life would be so boring without him.

So he doesn’t stay within the lines? Maybe the lines need to be bent to fit these beautiful human beings and help them find purpose and connection that fills them up in healthy ways <3


Yes! Holiday time can be so festive! :confetti_ball: I like that you guys work together to find ways to help her to not use… will be thinking of you both.


Some things to look out for/try to avoid engaging in on this holiday could help you maintain your cool and help your loved one as well.

  • Being around relatives in general can make things a bit more chaotic - it may be a good idea to think about preparing other family members and inviting them to join your support network so there isn’t a giant turkey in the room :rofl:
  • Nostalgia about the way things were “before” - this could create more tension than desired and lead our loved ones to feel bad that they may not be there yet. Do your best to focus on the present and share gratitude for how far you’ve all come.

These are just a few challenges that could be faced at Thanksgiving dinner. Another BIG ONE is that there is usually drinking at these events, so try and think about ways you’ll manage having or not having alcohol at your holiday this year.

Happy Thanksgiving to all :turkey:!


Oh happy day! Happy thanksgiving all! Today there are less challenges than other years, we are taking it easy, relaxing and having a small getaway <3 to all!