Being married to or sharing the same household with a drug or alcohol addict may feel like betrayal. Alcohol and drugs are their only top priority. You may have tried everything possible to help your loved one’s addiction problem. Maybe it isn’t working and you have reached the point where you are on the verge of a mental breakdown. However, besides checking for drug rehab centers such as Impact Recovery (https://impactrecoverycenter.net/), you can also do some things to help in the meantime.
Tips to Help When Living With an Addict
Educate Yourself on Addiction
Understanding the reason your spouse is addicted can help you be more empathetic. It is important that when you talk to your loved one you come from a place of empathy. You will get better results if done this way. Substance abuse is a chronic disease of the brain and people are unable to quickly stop once they have become dependent on drugs or alcohol. Alcoholism and drug addiction cause changes in the brain. It is important that you are familiar with how addiction works so you can have a better approach.
Detach With Love
Many support groups for families of addicts teach you to detach with love. This means that you should love your addicted loved one enough to allow them to make mistakes on their own. It also means accepting things that you can’t control, including them. It means making sure you are taken care of even when your loved one neglects taking care of themselves. These things are easier said than done.
Overall, you need to make sure you take care of yourself since it is not possible to take additional steps if this one doesn’t happen first. You will receive support and learn how to cope. They will teach you to put healthy boundaries in place with your loved ones. Furthermore, a professional who is trained will be able to help you recognize and alter these behaviors.
If you have a loved one that is addicted to drugs or alcohol, the blame game is not a good thing to do. You may blame them for addiction and they may blame you for driving them to addiction in the first place. No one wants the blame game. A mental health professional can assist you in exploring blame and teach you ways to communicate so you avoid putting your addicted spouse on the defense.
Remain Consistent with Boundaries
It is not easy to set boundaries, but you must also be able to enforce them. Drug addicts and alcoholics test boundaries. It is important to remain consistent if you live in the same household as an addict. Make sure you are clear regarding what you will and will not tolerate and any consequences of their actions. If they cross your boundaries, enforce these consequences. If you allow them to get away with something one time, it will send them a clear message that their behavior is acceptable.
Being married to or living in the same household as an addict makes your world seem small. Your entire life can revolve around their abuse. You may notice that you have begun avoiding friends and family. It is typically easier than making up excuses for your loved one or discussing it. You may be afraid that they will not understand and have instincts to isolate yourself. However, this is the time that they need your support more than ever.