If you have somebody close to you struggling with substance abuse, you may be wondering how help a loved one dealing with addiction. It’s not always simple or easy to decide to help someone struggling with substance abuse. However, if you’re there for your loved ones, they’ll have a better chance of beating their addiction. There will always be challenges to conquer, and there are no right or wrong answers. But here are some guidelines on how to provide help and support to an individual in recovery.
Knowledge is power when dealing with addiction
Families can move on from the blame game with the assistance of education. Weakness, willfulness, and stubbornness aren’t necessarily the root causes of an individual’s addiction; they may instead arise from changes in the brain. Family members can find a wealth of information about addiction on the internet. Addiction chemistry and treatment science books are widely available in most bookstores as well. Drugs are also studied in depth by research teams every day. Research into how chemicals interact with brain cells is being used to develop novel medicines that could treat or prevent addictions in the future. That’s the kind of information that might inspire optimism in a family. With new information learned, your faith in your ability to overcome addiction increases. So make sure you educate yourself and your loved ones to best support a struggling loved one during recovery.
Explore your options
There are many options for addiction treatment. From family therapy to 12-step programs, there are ways to help a loved one dealing with addiction. You can also locate a detox center or hospital close to you for some inpatient care. These facilities can provide a safe journey to recovery, as they are equipped with all that a person dealing with addiction might need. This is important because many who abuse substances have untreated mental health issues that play a role in their addiction. However, make sure to talk as a family about this decision, as you don’t want to push your struggling loved one away.
Eating together can help a loved one dealing with addiction
Modern life is so hectic that it’s usually simpler to dine alone. However, while you have a loved one dealing with addiction, try your best to eat together as a family. After a long, exhausting, or traumatic day, sharing a meal with family helps everyone unwind and re-establish bonds. The routine of sharing a meal can help foster a sense of belonging and common ground in families working through therapy. It can also be a mood-booster – sharing a laugh is often healing and brings us closer together. It’s also a good idea to spend some time together in the kitchen or cleaning up after the meal. It promotes productivity in a simple and easy way!
Take care of yourself first
A serious substance abuse issue is a long-term condition. Everyone in the person’s immediate circle suffers as a result, not just the user. Because they care so much about their loved ones, family and friends often prioritize the struggling individual before themselves. You’re more likely to suffer from despair and anxiety due to this. Self-care is essential if you want to be an effective support system for your loved one through their recovery process. You can schedule private therapy sessions for yourself to help you. Remember that if you put your well-being on the backburner, you won’t be able to help out to the best of your abilities.
Respect your loved one’s privacy and give them space if they need it
You may be tempted to talk about your loved one’s addiction when you go to therapy. While it’s vital to be open and honest about your feelings in therapy, respecting the person’s privacy is equally crucial. This is especially important when talking to family and close friends about a loved one’s addiction. Ascertain whether the struggling person is OK with the idea of their difficulties being brought up. If you go to therapy with a loved one, don’t tell anyone what you talked about there. You should respect your loved one’s privacy if they are in treatment or counseling alone and don’t want to share what they discussed. They might even choose to move away for a while! And however scary that might be for you, moving during recovery can be beneficial for everyone! Some people require personal privacy during the recovery process, and you should honor this decision.
Support, don’t enable
A family’s finances can be affected by a severe substance abuse disorder. It could also lead to legal issues, put people in harm’s way, or lead to a slew of other undesirable outcomes. There is a tendency for family and friends to want to shield the user from the effects of their use, so they tend to stop financially helping out. The problem is that this can worsen the addiction. In the early stages of recovery, many people need emotional and financial support. However, you should let them know that you are solely there to assist them in their recovery attempts and not in any other way. The best way to help your loved one is to support their healthy, long-term goals, such as going to school or finding work.
Substance abuse is difficult, but there are ways that you can help a loved one dealing with addiction and care for yourself at the same time. However, even though you cannot compel your loved ones to change, you may encourage them to get help and provide support as they deal with addiction. Remember to stick together and stay hopeful! You’ll get through this together.