Integrated Family Community Services 3370 South Irving Street, Englewood, CO 80110-1816 Ph: 303-789-0501

Tips for Talking to a Loved One About Addiction Recovery Solutions

In life, we all have a role to play. When it comes to substance abusers, the role they play is a bit complex. Many of them unwittingly step into character. Little by little, each hit or drink pulls them in further. Before long, they have fully immersed themselves into lives of destruction. Friends and family are often forced to play the role of the loving spectator. Watching their loved ones spiral out of control places them in a state of limbo. On one hand, their pain will compel them to do something. On the other hand, they’re not exactly sure what they can do. In their minds, confronting the addict may do more harm than good. However, part of being a good friend or relative requires that a person be willing to take that chance. When broaching the issue of substance abuse, loved ones need to handle the conversation with care.

Remember that timing is everything

It is never a good idea to have a deep conversation with someone who’s high or drunk. Addicts are known to be unpredictable when they’re intoxicated. Under the circumstances, such a conversation may erupt into a violent encounter. It is also possible that the individual will retain no memory of the conversation once they’re sober. Make plans to have the conversation when the addict is able to comprehend what is being expressed.

Know your goal

The ultimate goal of any intervention is to get the addict to seek help. However, it is an unrealistic one that can lead to frustration and disappointment. This does not mean that an intervention is pointless, it simply means that loved ones must be prepared to let addicts make their own choices. While the ultimate goal is recovery, the immediate one is about planting the seed for change.

Choose your words carefully

Many addictions are tied to deep feelings of guilt and shame. Therefore, it is best to avoid language that triggers those feelings. Loved ones should avoid blaming or harshly criticizing them for their behaviors while intoxicated. Interventions need to express compassion to the addict. This can be done by making the conversation about alcohol and its effects on the person.

Offer support

Some addicts fall further into their addictions because they’re ashamed and afraid to ask for help. Friends and family can alleviate these feelings by offering their support. Providing addicts with numbers to support groups and recovery centers can show them that loved ones care about their recovery.

Loved ones can also offer to lend an ear when needed. Addicts who feel alone will appreciate knowing that they have someone to turn to besides drugs or alcohol. For most men and women Xanax rehab or rehabilitation for alcoholism are extremely difficult pills to swallow, but if you help them at least start by talking about their problem this could help lead them to being more comfortable with the idea of rehabilitation.

The role of an addict is a hard one, but it doesn’t have to play out for an entire lifetime. Any addict that gets tired of playing the part will make the needed adjustments. However, friends and family can help speed things up by expressing their concerns. Love and compassion will plant the seeds for change in the addict.

Tim Esterdahl

Tim Esterdahl is the editor of IFCS blog. He is a married father of three and enjoys golf in his spare time.
Tim Esterdahl

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