“Addiction signs” Part 2; Helping the addict
Updated: Jan 14
This blog is written from the vantage of the addict to help family and loved ones who want to do something to help. - anything. Part one explored the behaviors of an addict, written by addicts. In this post, we will explore some options for assistance. Again, we are not experts in the field of recovery. We are just two guys with a heart for those still struggling and the families surrounding them.
Ironically it is the addict that understands what needs to happen to recover. The addict has not lost his capacities of knowledge or logic, nor are we blind to the fact that help is out there. We don't know how we will connect the dots between hurting and healing. We know that there is a physical and mental pull that is greater than our inner strength. A peculiar panic arises once we realize the drug or alcohol owns us.
Fear of abstinence paralyzes the addict. We foresee the battle but forfeit immediately, choosing perceived pleasure through pain over the promise of a restored existence.
The sad fact is that there is no magical phrase, no heartfelt plea, no threat, no perfect sentence, no dependable response, or ideal action that the family or loved ones can take that will jolt the sick man in the right direction.
The addict knows that they are living in hell and have no belief that healing can happen to change that. Once in the clutches of drugs and alcohol, for many, death is an acceptable option, valued in many cases more than life itself.
For us, in full dependence, the confrontation with loved ones about our addiction was the worst of all the negative consequences of use.
That being said, seeds can be planted that the addict will use once they have “decided” that it is time for a change. When we “decided” to surrender, we first went to the physical solutions that had been ear-dropped over the years: doctors, detox, rehabs, counselors, AAs, and for many, churches.
Do you feel like you're getting mixed messages? Should we confront the addict or leave them alone?
We can't control your level of concern or your response. And frankly, we can't recommend the best approach. Just know that the addict will come to the place of acceptance, conceding that they are beaten- on their own time. This may arrive on a typical Tuesday morning or after a DUI, being served divorce papers, losing custody of their kids, or losing their job. What we can tell you is that there is no accelerating the process. It is going to happen when it is going to happen.
Are there additional measures that can be taken? The rest of this post explores some common responses and resources that are available for the recovery process:
Note that Mike and Glenn have little experience in interventions per se. We have dug for this post and found some excellent ones that could get you down a path that's proper education.
What we do know is that if you've come to a place where an addict is in isolation and potentially self-harming toward death that this extremely desperate measure might be what works. We recommend that if you are at the place mentioned above, you should seek counsel from professionals immediately. This is a matter of life and death; you should look way past sober.coffee for advice or direction.
Listed below are some links that might help form a decision and plan of execution:
Ridgefield. is a treatment center in Washington that has laid out options as there are different methods of intervention widely used and condoned as the most professional ways of managing addicted patients.
Click here to read the article from Ridgefield
Footprints to Recovery does an excellent job of laying out interventions, including preparation and suggestions.
Click here to read the article from Footprints.
Lastly, Mayo Clinic covers interventions in an in-depth fashion.
Click here to read the article from Mayo Clinic
We wish you the best if the intervention is the way you want. Please know that Mike and Glenn pray for the still struggling addict daily. So, by default, you are in our prayers.
The following is quoted directly from the Al-Anon website: “There is no magic formula that enables you to help someone stop—or cut back—on their drinking. Alcoholism is a complex problem with many related issues. But Al-Anon can help you learn how to cope with someone else’s drinking challenges.
You could help by changing some of your behaviors that worsen things. It may be possible for you to find a healthier way to respond to these challenges. Again, there are no easy answers. But Al-Anon meetings offer the opportunity to learn from the experiences of others who have faced similar problems."
We have found that in our path and the paths of many that we love and respect, Al-Anon delivers on their statement of offering “help and hope for families and friends of alcoholics"
Click here to get to their official webpage
About professional counseling
We could provide over a million links to resources for good professional counseling. Without understatement, Glenn and Mike can say that counseling in the professional class can help immensely.
here are niche professionals that specialize in addiction. Like anything else, you might have to try several before you find the one that fits your hand like a tight glove. We trust it will be worth the search.
We might recommend the following search terms pertinent to your geographic area:
family addiction counseling/counselors
substance abuse counseling/counselors
About a Higher Power
We leave this one dangling out there, perhaps controversially, as we believe that acknowledging a higher power is the linchpin of recovery - recovery for the addict and recovery for the family and friends.
We are not asking anybody to believe in our concept of a higher power. We are just inviting that one be considered. And that that “one” is powerful enough to bring much-needed healing to the addict and relief to those affected by the addiction.
May you meet success on your road to recovery!
Thoughts and ideas for this blog post were taken and built upon from sober.coffee podcast #92 Titled: #Trending Series: Pt 5: Signs a Loved One Has a Drug Addiction The podcast dropped on12/28/2022 click here to hear the podcast
Alcoholics Anonymous and AA are registered trademarks of Alcoholics World Service. Inc. References to AA, the 12 steps, and 12 traditions does not mean that AA has reviewed or approved the contents of this publication, nor that AA agrees with the views expressed herein. This publication is intended to support personal growth and should not be thought of as a substitute for advice of healthcare professionals. The authors advice and viewpoints are their own.