Seeing a family member or a close friend suffer from the effects of their addiction is absolutely heartbreaking and stressful. We all have this urge to assist them, but we’re unsure how to do so effectively and without offending or harming them. Unfortunately, trying to help an addict reach sobriety can be so overwhelming that some people may think that feigning ignorance is the better way to go.
However, letting addicts fall deeper into their addictions will only keep harming them and the people around them. The automatic response would be to get rehab treatments at places like UKAT, but here are more details on how you can properly help someone recover from their addiction.
Knowledge is power
Before you launch your plan of helping an addict, you have to educate yourself thoroughly first. If you don’t know what they’re going through, you won’t be able to figure out what therapy they need or how to approach them.
Take time to understand the cause, symptoms, process, and effects of their addiction to be further aware of their situation and how this can affect the people around them. You can hire a leadership coach to help you and the patient, or you can do the research yourself by going through online and offline sources.
Don’t be an enabler.
It is tough for some family members and friends to deal with a toxic environment that they are entirely distant from. However, ignoring their addiction will only worsen it, and through that, you are helping them be worse. Do not enable their addiction if you want them to become sober. Cut off financial support and do not pay court fines or lawyers to get them out of jail. Make them realize that their addiction will further drive them down.
Encourage them to get help.
It may be hard to handle addicts because of their behavior, but you have to do your best to support them in their situation. Addicts may think that the people around them do not care nor love them, which is why you have to show them that you are concerned about their situation.
Further, you have to encourage them to get help as soon as possible. The earlier they get treatment, the faster they will recover. Remember that you have to focus on building trust and honesty with them; do not threaten them or criticize them more.
Set realistic goals
Most of the time, addicts cannot clearly hear or comprehend what you are saying, so you should not lecture them all the time about their condition. You can continue holding them accountable for their situation without reprimanding them. Do not expect them to achieve sobriety in such a short span of time, even if they promised to do so. Believe in them and support them instead of pressuring them.
Self-care is important
You cannot help someone if you are struggling too. If you find yourself stressed and anxious, step back a bit and calm yourself down. You do not need to pressure yourself to help them.
Getting strained might make it difficult for you to see the reason why you want to help them. So instead, make sure to be a better guide for the person you aid with your own mental health.
Helping an addict recover is a painful, tough road, but you should not be discouraged. On the contrary, once you have helped them become a better person, it will be one of the most rewarding moments in the world.