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Help for Families of Drug Addicts



If you have a loved one with an addiction, you may feel isolated and alone. You’re not the first person to find yourself in this situation, and you won’t be the last. 

Fortunately, there are many resources available to help families of addicts. We’ve put together this list of tips for families who need some guidance during a stressful time. 

These suggestions can help support you as you work through your own emotions about addiction and learn how to cope with the challenges that come along with having an addict in your life.


Table of Contents

1. Understand your loved one is sick

You may be angry that your loved one has developed an addiction, and you may feel hurt by the things they say or do as a result of their addiction. 

You may also worry that because of their behavior, no one will want to be around them anymore.

When someone you care about is sick with a disease like addiction, it’s natural to want to help them get better. 

But if they’re not ready or willing to seek treatment on their own, there are ways for family members and friends like you who care about them to support and guide them toward recovery

—without enabling their destructive behaviors any longer than necessary.


2. Educate yourself on the disease of addiction

As a family member or friend of a person who is addicted to drugs, you may have found yourself becoming frustrated and angry with them. This can be very natural and understandable. 

It is also one of the reasons why many people withdraw from their loved ones in this situation. 

Remaining engaged in your relationship will help keep you centered and grounded as you work through this difficult time together.

Here is a tip for staying connected:

  • Educate yourself on the disease of addiction. While it can be difficult to understand why someone would choose to do something that causes so much harm, knowing more about addiction may help alleviate some of the confusion you feel around it all. There are many different types of treatment options available today, so take advantage of those that are most suitable for your loved one’s needs – whether it’s individual therapy or group therapy sessions; outpatient programs or extended care facilities; alternative therapies like yoga or acupuncture; religious services such as prayer groups etcetera (the list goes on).


3. Learn to identify and avoid enabling behaviors

Enabling behaviors are actions that help the addict avoid consequences for his or her behavior. 

The problem with enabling is that it often makes the addict feel more dependent on you, making it harder for him or her to change.

  • It’s easy to get caught up in enabling behaviors because you’re trying to help your loved one. But suppose you are overinvolved in your loved one’s life and don’t set boundaries. In that case, he or she may have difficulty making healthy choices as an adult—and will probably continue to rely on you for everything from personal advice about relationships or finances to emotional support during rough patches in life (even years after their addiction has ended). If this is happening in your relationship with someone who has an addiction problem, take steps now so that when they do become capable of managing these things themselves they won’t need a “parent” figure anymore.
  • Enabling behaviors can also harm yourself by Getting hurt financially by paying debts or covering expenses associated with drug use
  • I am feeling depressed from losing time spent doing self-care activities like eating healthy foods instead of spending time with the person who abuses substances.


4. Practice healthy self-care

You deserve to take care of yourself. If you’re feeling overwhelmed by your loved one’s drug or alcohol use, it can be challenging to focus on your well-being. 

But the stress of helping a loved one can lead to serious health problems if not addressed.

Practicing healthy self-care can help you manage the stress in your life, as well as cope with your loved one’s addiction when they are struggling with their substance abuse issues.

Here are some tips for practicing healthy self-care:

  • Eat well and get enough sleep. Try creating a bedtime routine that allows for eight hours of sleep per night, even on nights when there is less time for rest due to family obligations or other responsibilities. This will help keep you energized and ready for whatever comes next in the day ahead!
  • Exercise regularly (at least three times each week). Exercise has been proven to improve mood and mental clarity, making it easier for you to handle stressful situations like an addicting family member who may need extra support during treatment programs or relapse prevention plans – so exercise often!
  • Take time for fun activities such as painting classes or cooking lessons every once in a while, so there is always something new coming up at home.


5. Choose your support carefully

You should also choose your support carefully. You may be able to find help in your community, or you may need to seek out private counseling services. 

Whatever the case, there are some guidelines you can follow to ensure that you choose a supportive environment:

  • Choose people who can be supportive. Make sure they understand what drug addiction is and what it means for family members of addicts.
  • Choose people who won’t enable behaviors—the use of drugs or alcohol—by making excuses for them or giving money/treating them like a “special case.”
  • Choose people who will listen without judging you for feeling angry about your situation or frustrated with the addict’s behavior (even if he is not ready to get help).
  • Finally, if possible, choose people who accept the addict’s behavior; this means not blaming yourself for what has happened, but rather taking responsibility for your behavior and reactions so that they don’t interfere with helping him recover from his addiction.


6. Consider asking a professional for help

If you’re looking for help and support, consider talking to a professional like a therapist, social worker, or addiction specialist. 

They can work with you on the issues that are making it difficult for you to help your loved one.

While it’s essential to focus on the positive aspects of your relationship with your loved one, it’s also important not to ignore the negative aspects of this relationship. 

Asking for help may be even more difficult than being in denial about what’s happening in the first place (which is why many people get stuck there). 

It may take some time before you feel comfortable reaching out—and that’s okay! 

You’re doing great just by recognizing how much pain this person is causing both of you, and by acknowledging that things need changes so everyone can be healthier in their lives.


Addiction is a disease and there are resources available to help you cope with the stress and pain of an addict in your family

You may be reading this because you are a family member of an addict. Or perhaps, you have a friend or loved one who is addicted to drugs and they are in serious need of help.

Addiction is a disease that affects people from all walks of life and there are resources available to help those dealing with addicts in their lives. 

Although it can be difficult and painful to see someone close to you struggle with addiction, it’s essential for people who love an addict not only to know that they’re not alone in their struggle but also how important it is for them to seek professional counseling services if necessary.



If you’re reading this, you are probably in need of some support. I hope that what we have covered here today will give you the resources and knowledge to be able to help yourself, your loved one, and anyone else who might need it. 

Addiction is a disease and there are many resources available for those suffering from it. 

It can be hard, but there are also people out there who understand what you are going through and will be there for you no matter what decision or path that person chooses.


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