What Loved Ones Can Do
If you are concerned that your loved one may be abusing or be addicted to drugs or alcohol, there are steps you can take.
1. First of all, don’t forget to take care of yourself. This may include setting appropriate boundaries, attending a support group like Al-Anon or meeting with your own counselor. Addiction has a significant impact on loved ones as well.
2. Allow consequences to occur. Often we try to lessen the effects of the addictive behavior in our attempt to protect our loved one. Unfortunately, this behavior lets the addiction continue.
3. Do not enable. Anything that helps the addict avoid taking responsibility for his or her own life is enabling. Examples are giving the person money or allowing an adult child or friend to live in your home rent free.
4. Considering contacting a professional to facilitate or lead you through the steps of an intervention. At a basic level, an intervention involves loved ones illustrating to the addict the specific negative consequences addiction has had on his or her life and then offering available treatment options.
5. Educate yourself on the disease of drug addiction and alcoholism. You can access information through websites such as: http://www.drugabuse.gov/nidahome.html; http://www.nida.nih.gov/scienceofaddiction/addiction.html; http://www.samhsa.gov/.
If you are a parent of a teenager that you suspect may be using drugs, consider the resources at the following website: http://www.theantidrug.com/
Is There An Alcoholic In Your Life A downloadable PDF brochure from Alcoholics Anonymous®
Alcoholics Anonymous® is a fellowship of men and women who share their experience, strength and hope with each other that they may solve their common problem and help others to recover from alcoholism.