What Should I Tell My Loved Ones If I Am Addicted?
Denial is a huge component of continuing addiction; after all, you can’t begin your recovery until you acknowledge that you have an addiction. Only when you objectively look at your behavior and recognize an issue can you make progress, and doing so is incredibly difficult and brave. Once you have been able to be honest with yourself, the next step is to be honest with the people who are closest to you. You will need their support in the journey ahead.
Openly admitting to your substance abuse will be one of the toughest conversations you will ever have in your life; saying “I’m an addict” can feel traumatic. But, manifesting the bravery needed to make such an admission means that you are beginning a recovery process that will help you reclaim control of your life. To learn more about the role addiction treatment can play in leading a more healthy, stable life, call 888-805-3559 Who Answers? .
It May Not Be a Surprise
Addicts are secretive because they need to be to keep using. This can mean denying substance abuse to loved ones and engaging in detailed rituals that they think mask the substance use and its symptoms, but many signs and symptoms of drug addiction are impossible to hide. If you have a drug addiction, chances are your family has already become aware of changes in your appearance, behavior, and attitude. Likely, they have been keeping a close eye on you and have been prepared for come time to have this conversation.
In fact, they have probably already asked you if you have a problem and you lied and/or became defensive. Now, you have a chance to be open.
You will want to drag your feet because it isn’t an easy conversation to have. But, every day that you continue using is a day that your addiction is worsening. You can’t afford to continue postponing this important conversation.
Create the Right Atmosphere
You need to prepare for the conversation and one part of that will be crafting the right moment to broach the topic. The setting needs to be a place where the people you love feel comfortable and safe. Things need to be calm, so avoid chaotic restaurants or sporting events. There should be space for people to step away if the conversation becomes too difficult; you don’t want people feeling trapped.
Another aspect of preparation is learning about addiction and your treatment options. Although addiction is exceedingly prevalent in society, a lot of people still think of it as the result of a weak will or a failure in values. It isn’t. Addiction is a disease that is marked by a compulsion to use drugs even when the user knows the terrible impact it is having on their life. An addict doesn’t have control over their continued use, which is why they need help. You need to be ready to explain this to the people that you love. Drafting a blueprint to refer to during the conversation can help you keep your facts straight.
Your family won’t feel comfortable with your addiction. You need to be ready to explain what your next steps will be. What sort of treatment can you enter? What programs have you spoken to? Which types of treatment seem best for your needs? When do you intend to enter treatment? What sort of help will you need from the people that you love?
So much of addiction is colored by continual lying. You have likely eroded a lot of the trust that used to exist between you and the people you love. In order to begin reestablishing trust, you need to be honest. Don’t paint a rosy picture of rehab and recovery. Explain what it entails and how it will benefit you. For help understanding the role of drug addiction treatment, call 888-805-3559 Who Answers? and speak to an expert.
Why Do I Need to Admit I Have a Problem?
When you disclose your addiction, there will be a few people who haven’t yet figured it out and they will be shocked. Some other people may feel disappointment. Others will lash out. But, some will step forward to offer support and encouragement. Knowing the variety of responses that await you can be scary stuff, but you will find that there are more advantages to owning up to your drug addiction than there are disadvantages.
Making your friends and family aware of your addiction will help you to better understand your problem. It may seem counterintuitive that other people could help you learn more about yourself, but it’s true. You have been wrapped up in your drug use, awash in denial, and made numb by the drugs. Conversing with the people you care about helps you to understand the impact your choices have had on other people. You can better comprehend your addiction because of this and you can better evaluate your next steps.
Having a support system is critical to recovery and you can’t begin building one until you open up about your struggle with drugs. You need a close-knit group who offers guidance, comfort, and encouragement. You need people who can remain calm and keep their wits about them when times get tough. You need people you can call when recovery gets hard. Only by admitting to your addiction can you begin building the team you need by your side.
One option is to continue denying that you have a problem. You can push blame for your behavior onto the stress of daily life or outside circumstances that are preventing you from leading the life you used to. But, the longer you delay the inevitable, the longer you go without treatment. You will suffer both physically and psychologically from continued drug use. You may even run the risk of overdose. Instead, you need to open up to your family and your friends and begin the process of entering professional drug addiction treatment. For help preparing for the conversation and for information about appropriate rehab facilities, call 888-805-3559 Who Answers? .