23 June 2022

Drug Addiction: The Family Disease That Nobody Talks About

Submitted by Josh Maraney
Drug Addiction: The Family Disease That Nobody Talks About

When you think of the phrase drug addiction, what comes to mind? For many people, it’s the typical user: someone with an alcohol problem, someone abusing illicit substances such as heroin or cocaine. While these kinds of drug addiction do happen and need treatment just like any other addiction, many people don’t realise that drug addiction can also be a family disease. This can cause significant problems both within the family and in relationships outside of the family.

The Stress of Hiding a Problem

The biggest danger in terms of intervention is not knowing what you don’t know. All it takes is one slip-up and an entire household can be thrust into crisis. It’s possible to unknowingly enable drug abuse if you don’t know what to look for, or how to respond. You might think your loved one has been getting around better lately when in fact he or she has just found a different—and much more dangerous—way of doing drugs.

You could very well be making a bad situation worse by trying to solve it alone. If you or someone you love has a drug abuse problem, don’t think for one minute that you have to carry their burden on your own. You’re not alone in feeling like you’re in over your head. Addiction is something many people have experienced, and many others are experiencing right now.

One thing is certain, drug abuse is never a problem you can solve alone. If your child, spouse or parent has a drug abuse problem, you need outside help to fix it—the sooner, the better. Recovery is possible for everyone who seeks it out. The more support you have during that process, and after recovery begins, the faster and easier it will be. Call us. We can help. Our luxury treatment centre is ready to welcome you and our counsellors and therapists are waiting to talk to you. 

The Difficulties Faced By Those Trying to Help

Dealing with an addict isn’t easy. It can be frustrating, stressful and isolating. When someone you love is battling drug addiction, it can feel like you’re fighting alone. Most people don’t know what to say or how to offer support. Many addicts are unwilling to admit they have a problem in the first place, and some families choose not to discuss it out of shame or guilt—which prevents them from getting help and seeking guidance on how best to cope with their situation.

Whether you’re a parent, sibling, friend or partner of someone with an addiction problem, there are things you can do to help and protect yourself. The earlier addicts receive treatment, however, and no matter what kind of rehab programme they enrol in, their chances of recovery are much greater than those who wait too long. The first step toward recovery is seeking help. 

Helping An Addicted Loved One is Difficult, But Possible

There is hope for loved ones of those who suffer from drug addiction. Yes, it’s difficult and can be painful to love someone who is out of control, but there are effective steps you can take to help a loved one get back on track.  The first step is being able to identify if your loved one has an addiction problem in the first place. If they do, you can then try reaching out and helping them seek treatment or at least support them through their recovery process. If they don’t have an addiction problem (or don’t want to admit they do), then perhaps some tough love might be necessary.

Family members can be some of an addict’s best allies in getting them to get clean and sober, or at least support them as they do. Whether you try to help a loved one by yourself or with professional assistance, it will take a lot of time and patience. Although there are no guarantees in life, by taking time to understand your loved one’s drug addiction and learn how to handle it better, you can truly make a difference in their life.

The Problem Isn’t You, It’s Them

If you’re going to succeed in helping your loved one with a drug problem, it’s vital to remember that you can’t do it by yourself. Instead, look for support groups and organisations that specialise in drug abuse. Take as much advice from people who have been there before and learn what you can from their experiences, so when it comes time to confront your friend or relative, you know exactly what to say.

When people confront a friend or relative with an alcohol or drug problem, they are often too confrontational, mean and judgmental. What they don’t understand is that it’s difficult for someone suffering from a drug problem to admit their issue because they feel very ashamed of themselves. Asking them why they don’t stop isn’t going to help – you need to be tactful and gentle.

The more relaxed your loved one feels around you, the more likely they will be to confide in you. You can also encourage them to seek professional help; sometimes just talking to someone outside of their circle can make all the difference. Remember that if your loved one doesn’t want help, there is nothing you can do – no amount of nagging will change things.

How Do You Keep Your Children Safe?

As a parent, your instinct is to protect your children. It’s important to remember, however, that kids are prone to experiment with substances during adolescence and early adulthood. Substance abuse can cause serious damage to their physical and mental well-being in ways you may not even be aware of. This doesn’t mean you have to have an overly strict household where nothing fun ever happens; it just means you need to take extra precautions when it comes to protecting your kids from drug use. 

Preventing children from trying drugs is hard. However, there are several things you can do to make it more difficult for them. You should be aware of all your kids’ friends and what they’re doing. It doesn’t hurt to ask them who they hang out with or what their plans are for a given night.

By being aware of who your kids’ friends are, you can also protect them from people who might try to get them to use drugs. If you know a kid has had problems with drug abuse in the past, don’t let your kids hang out with him or her. As they grow older, they will have more freedom and probably make friends outside of school or sports teams.

Family Support and Therapy is Available at Freeman House Recovery 

While it’s true that drug and alcohol rehab can help an individual break free from addictive behaviour, it is equally true that an addict cannot achieve sobriety alone. The support of family members and loved ones is critical to one’s recovery. While it’s not easy to watch a loved one suffer through drug and alcohol addiction, there are ways for you to intervene without enabling addictive behaviour.

The best way to help an addict is by offering support and remaining strong while they go through treatment. The love and guidance of a good family can make all of the difference in their recovery. If you or someone you know needs more information on what to do when someone you love suffers from drug addiction, contact Freeman House Recovery today.

Drug addiction is a family disease – and not in a metaphorical sense. Substance abuse doesn’t exist in a vacuum; it affects everyone around you, whether they realise it or not. However, if you know what to look for when someone close to you starts using drugs or alcohol (or even gambling or eating too much), you can protect them from further harm while they undergo treatment.

This article was first published at https://www.freemanhouserecovery.com/drug-addiction-the-family-disease-that-nobody-talks-about/

Published in Health and Medicine

Top Click Media

Top Click is one of South Africa’s leading full-service digital marketing agencies. Our custom-built, cutting-edge solutions are targeted to help you attract customers, convert leads and grow your business. From SEO and Google Ads to social media marketing and digital design, our measurable marketing campaigns deliver results – and ensure that, in a cluttered online marketplace, you rise above the rest.