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How to Aid an Addicted Loved One

Addicted Loved One Struggling with Substance Abuse - The Bergand Group

We discuss often how to deal with an addiction if you are the one struggling with substance abuse, but not as much how to help someone you care about who is having difficulty. It can be hard for you to know what to do for them, if anything, and how to go about your own life when a person that you care about is dealing with something so enormous. Fortunately, there are ways to help an addicted loved one while also taking care of yourself.

Be Supportive and Understanding

If you have a family member, friend, partner or child who is struggling with substance abuse, then you may not having any idea where to begin. It can be a massive undertaking to ‘simply’ discuss the situation with them as, of course, the issue isn’t ‘simple’ at all. It may be uncomfortable for you to point out their destructive habits and to voice concerns, particularly if he or she is dismissive or downright denies the problem. “In order to truly help those who have lost control, it’s important to understand some of the realities of addiction.”

The first step is for you to realize that their addiction is no fault of your own. If you are operating under this assumption, then you may be even more hesitant to bring it up in conversation with them. However, “guilt isn’t productive for anyone’s healing, but your involvement in their treatment and recovery can give them much-needed strength and support.” You have to focus on what you can do to help, support, and encourage, rather than on what you or they did wrong.

Awareness and education about the addiction recovery experience is absolutely crucial to being there for an addicted loved one. If you want to aid their search for a qualified treatment center, then you have to look into what kinds of programs might best suit their needs. If needed, and ideally alongside the individual, speak with a counselor or specialist who can help you to narrow down the search. It can all be very overwhelming, which is why using the resources available in your community is a must.

Signing up for some kind of treatment is not the end of the road. It’s the beginning to a healthier lifestyle, but that initial action is just the start; there is still a long road ahead. Your addicted loved one might suffer from relapse and have an incredibly hard time with the process. They may breeze through counseling only to develop a new addiction years down the road. Recovery is an ongoing experience and one that will likely require your aid throughout. Speaking of relapse: it is more likely than you might want to think, and that’s okay. Part of detoxification and treatment is how to deal with triggers, cravings, and the threat of relapse when it may arise. 

Finally, be aware of any co-occurring disorders. Some addictions are exacerbated by the existence of things like depression, anxiety, and bipolar disorder. Some of  these conditions can arise as they are struggling with substance abuse. Whatever the case, be as understanding and patient as you can to help your addicted loved one to get the support he or she needs.

If you are suffering from an addiction of any kind or are looking for help for another person, then contact The Bergand Group. We offer recovery programs for yourself or for others or are seeking education materials about addictions. The Bergand Group is Maryland’s leading addiction recovery center and offers support for those struggling with addiction and mental health issues, including direction for those who may be denying an addiction.  We can help you to work through your addiction in a safe and healthy environment where everyone is committed to your care.

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About The Bergand Group:

At The Bergand Group in Baltimore and Harford County, Maryland, our therapists have more than twenty years of experience in the mental health and addiction fields. Our focus is on providing comprehensive mental health care and appropriate care for addictive disorders. We offer both alcohol rehab and drug rehabilitation. If you or someone you know is struggling with alcohol or substance addiction, there is help available. We also offer several other services, including family therapy and counseling. We can help. Contact us today.[/fusion_builder_column][/fusion_builder_row][/fusion_builder_container]

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