When you discover a family member is addicted to drugs, you would straightaway want to help them overcome their addictive behavior. But it is not always easy like it seems. The caveat is that your first approach would likely to be confrontational, especially if you are not a professional consultant. That would only worsen the situation. There is still hope though; because in most cases of addiction therapy, family members play a crucial role in supporting loved ones overcome the problem of addiction.
In this post, I walk you through five must-do things if a family member is abusing drugs and substances such as tobacco, meth, alcohol, and marijuana. While it would be necessary to National Drug Abuse Hotline Numbers: Free Addiction Help 24/7 center for help at some point, consider doing the following beforehand:
1. Learn About Addiction
Addiction is a monster that does not only attack individuals abusing drugs but also creates problems in affected families. A report by the National Survey on Drug Use (NSDUH) published in September 2018 paints a picture of a problem that is increasingly affecting many American households. The study proffers that 19.7 million people, aged 12 years and above, are battling substance abuse. It further postulates that three out of ten Americans know someone affected by drug abuse, translating to nearly 46 percent of the entire U.S population.
But apart from the worrying statistics, learning about addiction is a crucial step toward helping people who abuse drugs overcome their problematic behaviors. From signs of drug abuse, the type of substance a family member is misusing to how addiction affects lives, helping someone overcome addictive behavior takes more than zeroing into the dreadful statistics. You should not run the risk of approaching a family member on suspicion that he or she is abusing tobacco, meth, marijuana or heroin before talking to someone via an addiction helpline.
Moreover, learning about addiction will help you filter out misinformation from everything you hear about drug abuse. Most importantly, it should help you understand among other things, how drug abusers behave. Check trustworthy sources such as research centers, government agencies, and books for information on drug abuse. In the end, use the knowledge to develop an effective counseling approach that eases drug abusers into an open conversation session about their addiction problem and the need to solve it.
2. Do not cover up or risk being an enabler of drug use
When a family member abuses drugs, you become exposed to emotional, verbal or even worse, physical abuse. People who misuse drugs exhibit traits such as high level of irritability and aggressiveness. Some would go to the extent of stealing money from their families to buy drugs. If they sense you are against their problematic behaviors, chances of a family member becoming a victim of emotional abuse are very high.
You should, however, not risk falling into their trap. Take measures that will absolve you from their troubles such as not giving them money to buy drugs. If learning about addiction does not help you find a way out, consider dialing a drug addiction hotline for help. Drug therapists are the best people to help at this point.
From private drug therapy counseling sessions, family therapy programs to group therapies, professional consultants are trained to help drug users and their families overcome all forms of abuse related to drug use. Most importantly, a good addiction center in your state will help a family member abusing drugs see then need to stop before rolling out an effective recovery program.
3. Your Physical and Mental Wellness Matters, Regardless
Helping a family member overcome drug abuse is especially not easy without risking your general well-being. Whether it is a parent or a sibling, they will want to cause chaos at home, especially if their demand for money to buy drugs is dismissed. While it would seem selfish top focus on your health before helping the addict overcome their problematic behaviors, it is the best thing to do. After all, you must be mentally sound to help most effectively.
Take all your meals, exercise and sleep soundly. Calling a drug addiction help hotline in your state may be important but your role in the recovery process of a loved battling drug abuse is even more necessary. By prioritizing your physical and mental health, you become effectively involved in a drug abuse support network. Taking care of yourself does not mean axing a drug abuser from your life. Rather, it is the right thing to do if you want to be in the best state of mind to understand their problem and help them deal with it.
4. Find Help If It Having A Huge Toll on Your Life
The first time you discover a family member abuses drugs, it hits you hard. In the process of trying to cope with such a reality, a crucial aspect of your life such as employment, a fitness routine or studies may take a dip, never to normalize. Even worse, depression is always in the offing.
But let’s face it. It is not the end of life. As you come to terms with their situation, dial a drug addiction helpline. The person on the other end will walk through a process of coping with this reality. The next steps should involve bringing the addict on board and subjecting them to a structured addiction counseling therapy.
5. Support Treatment Process of the Addict
Drug abuse negatively affects families in many ways. From a marauding risk of slumping into depression, loss of a job to financial strain, many things will go wrong in your home. If it does not turn your life upside-down, it pushes the affected families to the precipice of despair. But regardless of how stressful the situation might be, funding a recovery process is the best thing you can do to a loved one in a drug rehabilitation center. If you are short of funds, consider other ways of raising money such as donations from friends and family members.
Rehab facilities are often costly given few or lack of insurance plans for drug abusers. However, with a good treatment plan and reliable sources of funds, you can ease into the process without feeling the financial burden that comes with it.
When an individual abuses drugs, it takes a toll on his or her siblings, parents, friends and other close relations. Tips explored in this post should, however, help you guard against among other things, emotional abuse and risk of depression while looking for help.