Being human is hard, but addiction brings in a whole mess of things to make it harder for everyone involved. It can be difficult to know how to treat a loved one struggling with addiction. What’s important, though, is to make sure you aren’t enabling their addiction by doing these things.
1. Do not look down on them. Your loved one needs support and constructive criticism. Addiction is tearing them down already. Adding your own personal wrecking ball will not be beneficial, but will instead inhibit your loved one from moving forward in recovery.
2. Do not disrespect your loved one. This includes talking behind their back, making fun of them, or any other actions that lower the bar of respect you should have for any loved one.
3. Do not allow yourself to believe the myths of addiction. Commit some time to studying what addiction is and what it is not so that you can better understand and aid your loved one.
4. Do not allow pessimism to overcome you. Getting over addiction is hard enough as it is. Adding a bad attitude to the mix could make it feel impossible for the loved one trying to recover. You need to be strong, supportive, and happy as your loved one works to recover from addiction.
5. Do not feed into their addictions. Do not give any assistance that may help your loved one get theirs hands on an abusive substance. This can include giving money out, paying for a car, a phone, or any other item that may facilitate their addiction. This doesn’t mean that you can’t ensure your loved one has a safe place to live or a way to contact you, but you need to make sure they aren’t abusing these assets to feed an addiction.
6. Do not think that you alone can get your loved one through drug or alcohol addiction. Addiction recovery comes with withdrawals and often requires professional help. Seek that professional help so that you and your loved one can get back to life.
Seven. Don’t stop loving them. Your loved one needs you more than anything right now. Turning you back on them will only ensure that they continue to struggle.
If you follow these guidelines, you will better ensure that your loved one is getting the help and support they need to get through addiction. At Annie’s House, we help women recover so that they can be with their families again.