Loving someone who is struggling with addiction can be difficult. When you are not someone who has experienced substance abuse in the past, you may not know how to go about helping your loved one through this challenging time. One of the best ways to find help for someone you care about is by getting them into the right rehab program. Of course, this is easier said than done. There are plenty of obstacles that can arise when you are attempting to assist a close friend or family member on their road to recovery.
In order for you to feel confident in your ability to help a person you care about who is struggling with addiction, there are several key steps to take. Consider these tips and discover the best possible way for you to help your loved one see success.
Understand the Signs
Before you can start assisting your loved one, you need to know what you are dealing with. Addiction can take many forms and you will need to recognize certain signs before you can take action. When a loved one begins to act out of character, it can be an early warning sign of a problem. Usually, people who are struggling with addiction will become withdrawn and stop interacting with the people he or she knows will not be okay with substance abuse. While not a guaranteed sign of addiction, these changes in personality are often early indicators.
Helping a person get into rehab begins with giving yourself time to recognize that there is actually a problem. Addiction can also take many forms. A person who has become addicted to opioids will have different requirements than one who is struggling with alcohol abuse. Though the general idea of addiction might be the same, there are different ways to tackle each issue. Be sure to understand the exact issue your loved one is dealing with in order to provide the help that will make an impact.
Discuss the Options
After you have recognized a problem in your loved one, you need to have a discussion about the issue. Your loved one is probably already aware of the issue at hand, but he or she may not be open to discussing it. Don’t be surprised if attempting to bring up the topic leads to a volatile situation. Addicts can get defensive, especially when they feel like they are being cornered or attacked. Try not to suggest the problem on your own. See if you can get your loved one to openly admit the issue of his or her own accord.
If your loved one recognizes the problem, then it can be a good idea to bring up the topic of rehab. Try and gauge whether or not your loved one is open to this option. You may find that he or she has been considering it already and was unable to make the decision without help. Unfortunately, you may also encounter a lot of resistance. Those who refuse to admit that they are struggling with addiction can get very upset at the idea of rehab, so be prepared for a calm conversation to take an intense turn.
When your advice is heeded and your family member enters a rehab program, your journey is far from over. While you might feel a sense of peace knowing your loved one is in competent care, you also need to consistently show your support. Providing support to a loved one in recovery has been said to be integral to the success of the program. When a person feels like he or she has a support network available outside of the rehab, it can drive this individual to work harder to beat the issue.
There are many different ways you can show your support to a loved one in rehab. One way to do this is by making a simple call. In most cases, an addict is not going to be allowed to have his or her phone while in rehab. Still, the facility will allow calls to specific individuals. Make sure you call regularly to check in with your loved one and see how he or she is doing. This can make all the difference and help your family member feel supported on this difficult and long journey.
Find Your Own Support
As a person you love moves through the rehab process, you may find yourself going through a world of different emotions. The family members and friends of an addict often deal with a lot of emotional baggage associated with the situation. While you might not be dealing with addiction yourself, you still need to be able to find your own support to help you manage your emotions throughout this challenging period. Connect with other family members of addicts and discover a support network that can help you find the peace of mind you need to carry on with your life.
When someone you care about is struggling with addiction, you may not know what steps you need to take. Finding help for your family member is all about giving yourself time to recognize the signs of addiction and begin a conversation with the addict. The more you know going into the situation, the easier it will be for you to get your message across. Take your time, research all of your options, and learn how you can take action. The sooner you act, the sooner your loved one can get on the right path for his or her future.