Addiction is known as a family disease because everyone involved in an addict’s life is affected. As an addict, it’s quite common to think that nobody is being hurt by the actions he or she is taking. This is part of the disease of the addiction. The part of the brain that’s responsible for empathy and self-awareness is severely damaged by heavy drug or alcohol use, so the addict often doesn’t see what they’re doing to their loved ones.
Helping a Loved One Get Sober
If you have a loved one who is struggling with a drug or alcohol addiction, you may not know how to handle the situation, and that’s completely normal. You may want to love the person and provide them with all of the help they need because they can’t help themselves, but you may be doing more harm than good. You may be angry or upset at the addict, which can cause you to sever ties with them.
You’re not alone in the way you feel, but there are a right and wrong way to deal with someone who has an addiction. The first thing you have to realize is that the addict’s addiction is theirs and theirs alone. You didn’t cause the person to become addicted, and you can’t force them to stop. Although you’re powerless to their addiction, you can take certain steps to ensure that you’re not enabling their potentially fatal disease.
The first step to trying to help your loved one get sober is to have an informal intervention, which can be done in a one-on-one setting. Letting the person know that you’re concerned and that they may need help is sometimes enough to get the addict’s mind thinking in a new way. Some users don’t know that other people realize that they have a problem, and some don’t think there’s an alternative way to live.
If the addict has refused treatment and is becoming a danger to themselves or others, then it’s time to have a formal intervention. Before you have a formal intervention, you should speak with an intervention specialist to get a full understanding of how to have a proper intervention.
One of the best ways that you can help your loved one is to learn about the disease of addiction. Not only will this allow you to be of better help to your addicted loved one, but you may have some ease and comfort in your life as well. By speaking with an addiction specialist or reading about addiction, you’ll start to see what addiction really is and how it’s a legitimate mental disorder.
When your loved one goes to treatment, there are often family sessions where you can begin to work through your issues. Here, you’ll begin to discover how to cope with the addict when they return home as well as more about what the addict is going through. It may take time, but you can eventually mend your relationship with the addict and live an incredible life.