It’s always hard coming to terms with the fact that a member of your own family struggles with alcohol or drug addiction. Maybe it’s something you long suspected, or maybe the realization has come completely out of the blue. Either way, it’s only natural to wonder what you can do to be a source of help and encouragement— and not enablement.
If you’ve recently discovered that someone close to you struggles with addiction, here are a few practical steps you can consider.
What to Do When Your Loved One is Facing Addiction
- Educate yourself. One of the best ways you can provide real compassion to your loved one, while avoiding unproductive blame games, is to do a little reading. School yourself on how addiction works on a brain-chemistry level.
- Find peers. It’s hard living with someone who has addiction, and it’s going to take a toll on your own mental wellbeing. One way to stay strong is to connect with a local support group, where you can lean on others who are going through similar trials.
- Go to therapy. It can be helpful to speak with a therapist on your own, but also see if you can talk your loved ones into attending family sessions with you. This can be a good way to work out some of the issues that are impacting your entire crew.
- Share meals together. It sounds silly, but making the time to have family meals together can be really healing. Make it clear to your loved one that you still care for them deeply and consider them an invaluable part of your family.
These are just a few suggestions, and of course, there’s plenty more you can do as you navigate life with an addicted family member. To get addition counsel from Seacliff Recovery, reach out to us at your convenience.