As we make our way towards the end of National Recovery Month I want to discuss helping a love one that is struggling with addiction. Often times that love one is left out to battle the battle alone. Then there are other times that we want to help our love ones but just don’t know how. Well here’s 5 ways to support a love one battling addiction.
- Be supportive. Showing support for someone with an addiction means going to meetings with them, listening without judgement, shame, and blame, giving them a phone call to simply say hello, understanding that addiction is a disease, owning your feelings and not covering up the behaviors.
- Set boundaries. Provide your love ones with what you will and will not tolerate and be accountable for sticking to those boundaries. It is not tough love. Setting boundaries is a way to disable the behavior.
- Go to therapy. Encourage the love one to seek professional help. As a family member it will be very important that you go to therapy as well to work on any unresolved and unaddressed feelings and thoughts around the addiction. Therapy can also help you address your codependency in the relationship with the love one. Family therapy is also a good idea to help the family work on family of origin challenges that keeps the family in the dysfunction around the addicted love one.
- Be an example. If you use drugs or alcohol or have an addiction of certain behaviors then you lead by example through lifestyle change. You model healthy living by changing unhealthy behaviors, going to support groups, having a sponsor, or going through a recovery program as well.
- Self Care. It is very important that while you are supporting a love one with an addiction that you also do some self care. You want to make sure that you are getting your needs taking care of without falling into the trap of constantly meeting the needs of others and abandoning yours. Honor you.
So there you have it. This is just a few of many ways to care for a love one with addiction. Remember that addiction doesn’t just affect the one person. It affects the whole family.
If you or someone you know is struggling with addiction please reach out for professional help. Don’t go at this alone!
I am located in Matthews, NC. I specialize in working with individuals, families, and couples who struggle with addiction, codependency, eating disorder, disordered eating and relational challenges. How may I serve you?