If you have a family member struggling with addiction, you naturally want to help. You need to understand what that person is going through and have a good understanding of addiction before you really help them. Addiction is complicated, and requires a careful approach otherwise you could end up making the situation worse.
First, you will not be able to change their behaviour. Manipulating or threatening a person is not going to work. The importance here is that you change your behaviour – how you interact and with an alcoholic. By doing this, you are putting yourself in control. Show your support for them as best you can and let them understand that you will support them if they choose to quit. You cannot directly convince a person to quit, but you can influence their behaviour and decisions, without threats, manipulations and intimidation.
You cannot force a person to go for treatment. A recovering addict will tell you that they reach a point where they are ready to seek help. If they have not yet reached this point, they are not ready for treatment and there is nothing you can do about it. They will ask for help when they are ready, and it will be on their terms and not yours. This is when you offer to take them to treatment and then they will more than likely cooperate.
It is important to let a person know that you care and have shown them that help is available. An intervention may work in some cases and in others not. It is not a switch that can be forced on and off in an addict, but it can be a way of guiding a person towards recovery. You need to understand what the goal of the intervention is and make sure that your expectations are not set very high, and that you continue to show support the whole time.
It is also important that you do not deny a person the consequences of their problem and their behaviour. They should take responsibility for their behaviour so that they can learn from it. It is also vital to be able to separate the person from their disease. Their behaviour is not necessarily who they are as a person but it is just a representation of their disease.
It is difficult to stand by and what someone fighting a disease like addiction, but it is important to understand how to deal with it. Ask a counsellor or someone at a treatment centre to guide you in the most appropriate way of helping a person deal with their disease.
There are many different forms of support for addicts that will help them on the road to overcoming substance abuse. It is important to note that this available support for addicts may only be effective if the person has already accepted that they have a problem and wants to get help. If the person is not ready or is opposed to treatment then it is most likely that the counseling and support given will not be effective. Support cannot be forced on the addict, they need to be ready and willing to accept the support for it to make a difference and truly help addicts to overcome their addiction.
Finding The Right Support For Addicts
We are all individuals and finding the right support for addicts can be quite tricky. No two situations or individuals will ever be identical and this is why there are so many different forms of support available. The most popular type of support or treatment chosen is usually a rehabilitation clinic. These clinics provide accommodation, counseling, food and support for addicts to help them on the road to recovery. Due to the 24hour monitoring and lack of temptation during the crucial first few weeks of overcoming an addiction, many people would agree that this form of support and therapy is the most successful. Addicts go back to their homes after a few weeks at the clinic when they are stronger and equipped with new skills to help them stay clean.
There are also many support groups and counseling available at local community and youth centres. To make support even more accessible, there are now support groups online. Even after going to a rehabilitation clinic, it is often recommended that the person attends a regular support group. This will help them to stay on the road to recovery and not to give in to any temptation that will lead them back to substance abuse. There are general support groups that offer support to all types of addicts and there are also more specific support groups that are more geared towards a certain type of addiction.