Addiction is a phase of life where the individual suffering is not in control anymore. Every time this person realises he has addiction, it makes him feel miserable and extremely dependent. This is the time of developing insight because the addicted person is more vulnerable and guilty of being dependent on the substance. It is said that other people cannot help a person under the influence of substances or alcohol. However, this is not entirely true because a person requires love and support when he is suffering from any type of illness is it physical or mental.
Addiction does not affect the individual alone; it takes a toll on the life of the entire family. As the person’s addiction worsens, it progressively takes over every aspect of their lives, particularly their relationships. Every relationship between loved ones and the addict is eventually influenced by the addict’s addiction in some way. Hence, it is the responsibility of the entire family as well as friends to help this person towards recovery.
There are multiple ways in which loved ones can help their family members come back to normal life without these substances. Few of these techniques are mentioned below:
Providing unconditional love and support
The most important of them all however, is to provide unconditional love and acceptance to the family member suffering from addiction. This person does not have to be viewed as an ‘addict’; he has to be looked at in the same way as he was looked at before. For example, as having cancer does not make the patient a bad person, having addiction also does not count for him being a bad person. When family members and loved ones accept this person unconditionally, it gives him a sense of hope to recover. It also makes him feel that he is still of importance to his family and they do not up down upon him. This helps the person regain self-confidence and gives him the will power required to fight addiction and recover.
Preparing for co-morbidities
Addiction-related health problems are among the most significant and some like HIV are permanent. Other psychological co-morbidities can be depression, anxiety or bipolar disorder. On an emotional level, relationship issues are the most traumatic; rebuilding trust can take years, and in some circumstances, it simply isn’t feasible. Furthermore, even after many years, relapse is still a possibility. Understanding the situation and preparing for these difficulties can make it easier to solve them when they arise.
Become knowledgeable about addiction and recovery.
Recovery from addiction and alcoholism is one of the most difficult obstacles that most people face in their lives. Loved ones will find it much easier to relate to and assist a recovering addiction patient if they understand addiction, and they will also be much better equipped to help prevent relapse. The best way a loved one can help an addict is to educate themselves on the many aspects of addiction and recovery, such as potential triggers, health issues, enablement, the recovery process, and the psychological changes that addiction causes.
Guide them to the right path
Many a time’s people suffering from addiction do not to a rehab facility simply because of the stigma attached to it. It is the family’s responsibility to guide this member to the correct facility and encourage them to take the help available. They can also enlighten the person suffering that addiction is a mental illness and can cure is possible if one is voluntarily ready to quit and work towards recovery. Support and guidance from family become most important here.
Make Adjustments to Aid Sobriety
Loved ones’ support is often crucial in helping a recovering addict keep their sobriety, especially in the early months after rehab. The following are some examples of adjustments that can help:
– Get rid of all addictive substances in the house.
– Change your location if possible to keep away from earlier triggers
– Keep away from social gatherings where substance abuse is likely to occur.
– Find new, sober things to do as a couple.
– Ensure regular follow ups with the rehab
Look for Help
Many people find that dedicated support groups provide the most valuable assistance. These groups gather to provide a variety of useful services, such as emotional support, friendship, connection, increased knowledge and understanding, and practical advice and techniques. It’s critical that loved ones get help for themselves. Therapy, counselling, and exercises like yoga can all be beneficial. It is impossible to fully support someone else until you have enough self-support. Furthermore, few responsibilities are as emotionally draining and lonely as caring for an addict. Hence, in-order to give care, you must be equipped yourself.