The line between having a little fun and developing an addiction to alcohol or drugs can get blurred. Often the friends and family notice a problem far sooner than the person experiencing the addiction does it. There are ways you can help them steer clear of it and recover fully.
A Life Spiralling Out of Control
Very few individuals make it to full-blown adulthood without enjoying a few parties and maybe even indulging in alcohol and recreational drug use. Being the life of the party can seem funny for a while, but what if this behavior continues, or gets worse over the years? What if this is your BFF (best friend forever)? What started as youthful exploration can become a lifelong addiction.
Are You Encouraging Substance Abuse?
Finding that your friend is now in the state of addiction may leave you in a seat of responsibility that many find uncomfortable. Many friends simply walk away, rather than sticking by their side to see the situation through. The first item to explore is your own behavior. Are you enabling the addiction? Do you provide the funds, transportation or connections for your friend to access drugs and alcohol? Do you go to elaborate means to keep your friend out of trouble with parents, law enforcement, or employers? If so, you are enabling the disease. This is all done with the best of intention, but you have to stop and set boundaries. Explain to them that you will no more further their descent into addiction and stick with it.
Staging an Intervention
If you are reading this article, you are already in the process of learning how to be a responsible friend. They need to face the fact that they have an addiction and need help getting free. Pull together all of the people that are close to them and care about recovery. Confront them in a loving way about their behaviour, and how worried it makes everyone. Make seeking treatment a demand. Have a facility in mind that can accept your friend right away.
Giving Needed Reassurance
Always view the situation from their angle. The thought of getting treatment for addiction seems frightening. Be prepared to offer them all the reassurance needed that you will be there for them, can handle their business while in treatment and will still be around when they come back out. This is often all it takes if their lives are in turmoil due to addiction. They need to know that someone, at least anyone is going to stick by their side during the process.
Follow Through With the Commitment
If you promise to be there for them, take care of their pets, or whatever the promises are, and make sure you follow through with the commitment. Relapses can happen and to come out of treatment and discover that your friend really did not mean what they said can be a catalyst for disaster. They will be working hard to follow through with their end of the bargain. It is important for you to do the same. They may be angry initially, but through the entire process, they will see how much you care about their well-being.
Learn About Their Addiction
Each case of substance addiction can be different. Do your homework and learn about their particular addiction and find out ways you can be helpful, both while they are in detox and after they come home. There is a lot of good information out there from trusted professionals. Learn what can be stumbling blocks in their recovery and help get them removed. They may need to develop hobbies for their spare time, find safe activities to do that have less to do with partying, or select a whole new set of friends. Be prepared to do whatever it takes to see their success.
Help Keep Motivation Towards Complete Recovery
Coming home from detox and treatment can be just as scary as entering. This may be the first time they have viewed the world soberly in a long time. Give them the chance to catch their breath. Help keep them motivated toward sobriety and recovery. Go with them to meetings that are designed for friends and family. Be the person they can talk to honestly in all situations. Sticking by your friend during this tough time is one way to cement the bonds of friendship for life.
Contact addiction experts like Restore Detox Centers to find out more about how to help your friend conquer a substance abuse problem today!
Article Submitted By Community Writer