How Can I Help a Friend or Family Member Showing Signs of Addiction?

family member showing signs of addictionOne of the most heartbreaking events is seeing a loved one follow the path of addiction.

From the outside looking in, it’s common to feel confusion as to why your loved one is on this path; you may even feel angry, sad, guilty or helpless.

Many friends and family members try to help their loved one for a certain period of time until they begin to lose hope. If this is where you’re at, it’s important to note that your loved one is going to need a treatment program to really fight this.

There are steps to doing this, but it may take time. Very Well Mind suggests the following:

  1. Expect that your loved one may feel embarrassed, they may not agree they have a problem, they may not want to seek help, they may fear consequences about moving forward with treatment and more.
  2. Establish trust with your loved one by being respectful and allowing certain consequences to arise from their actions.
  3. Seek help for yourself first. There are many 12-Step support groups (Al-Anon) for friends and family members and individual psychotherapy may be especially helpful as well.
  4. Communicate openly and honestly with your loved one. You may decide to stage an intervention, or even have a professional interventionist join you.

A 2016 study published in the International Journal of Mental Health Systems found that friends and family members often wish for their loved ones with addiction to stop substance use, to have the tools needed to better cope with mental health issues, to be happier, less anxious and more relaxed. There are many benefits to treatment, but your loved one may need your support to get there.

Cumberland Heights is a nonprofit alcohol and drug-addiction treatment center located on the banks of the Cumberland river in Nashville, Tennessee. On a sprawling 177-acre campus, we are made up of 2 12-Step immersion campuses, 12 outpatient recovery centers and 4 sober living homes. We believe that each person has a unique story to tell – and that’s why we always put the patient first.

Call us today at 1-800-646-9998 to take the next step towards your happiness and health.