Watching a loved one suffer from addiction is heart breaking. You may also be confused about how to approach and communicate with them effectively. It is not easy to talk to a friend or family member about alcohol and drug addiction, and definitely not easy to watch them cope with substance abuse. However, it might be easier and quicker for your friend or relative to overcome addiction with your guidance and support.
If you have a friend who is suffering from alcohol or drug addiction, do not hesitate to extend immediate help. Remember that addiction has a number of physical, emotional, and psychological consequences that make life difficult for many. But the support of friends and family members can help addicts get the right treatment for quick recovery.
Look out for signs of addiction
The best way to know if your friend or relative needs help is to watch out for behavioral changes, physical signs and psychological symptoms. You may find that your friend has lost interest in school or work, a relative getting into isolation or experiencing withdrawals. Drug and alcohol abuse results in symptoms that are noticeable in addicts, and that is when you must decide on initiating a conversation.
Understand their reactions
Dealing with alcohol and drug addicts can be extremely overwhelming and challenging. Before you decide on speaking to your friend/relative about the problem, you must be aware and ready for negative reactions that may come your way. Addicts struggling to overcome substance abuse generally display feelings of anger, frustration, denial, and avoidance. Your friend may try and avoid the topic every time you bring it up or getting angry upon confrontation.
Talk to them
It is advisable to talk when your friend is not under the influence of drugs or alcohol. A sober state of mind is the only that someone with an addiction will understand what is best for them. Find the right time and place, sit down and have an open, two-way conversation. The goal is to communicate for building awareness and not accuse or make them feel guilty about anything. Speak to them with as much love and politeness as possible, but convey your message clear. Let them know that you care about them and that they are encouraged to take professional help or treatment to overcome addiction.
As a friend or family member, you can help choose the right rehab center or professional treatment. After knowing the severity of the situation, you will be in a better position to select a program that is best suited for your loved one. While you do your best to help them in every way possible, keep having conversations regularly in order to understand their state of mind and progress. With a little determination and patience, you can definitely help someone close to you get rid of addiction and make a huge difference in their life.