When it is time to talk to the family bout addiction, it can be nervewracking. Maybe there have been several attempts that failed or they did not seem interested to hear what needed to be said. When the decision is made to get clean, involving family and friends is key. When making amends, they will be the first people to turn to. Learn some tips for getting ready to come clean to family and friends so it goes well and creates space for healing.
A person who has an addiction is going to demonstrate some markers of the behavior going past the point of recreational use. Perhaps the person going to their family finally realizes this, but maybe some friends have been arrested for a DUI or they have been charged with drugs. Partying could be fun but it could also be more serious. When alcohol and drug use goes beyond recreational, there will be some of the following signs:
- Losing friends or family due to habit
- Legal issues from habit
- Drinking more than friends each time in social situations
- Giving up the drug or drinking makes the person nervous
- Unable to go to a party and not drink or use drugs
- Cannot set a goal to quit and stick with it (failed attempts to give it up)
When accepting there is an addictive behavior happening, this is the first step towards healing. The people in a loved one’s family are often waiting a long time for them to admit they have an addiction. The time to get help is when it seems serious consequences are taking over a person’s life and they cannot keep going the way they have been any longer. It is hard to admit help is needed for addiction, but the sooner the better.
Unless people live under a rock, they are usually not cut off from the reality of a loved one’s addiction. Perhaps they were offered help before and did not take it. If the person is unsure how to tell the family about addiction, it helps to start with the truth. Starting with talking honestly and openly. Let them know addiction has been a problem for a while but family is also important. Tell them addiction is taking over work or school and the ability to function. Look at the ways honestly addiction affected relationships and share how the cost has been financial. Let that inform the conversation so they know the truth is being spoken. Don’t hide anything. They likely already feel they’ve been lied to and are tired of hiding and lies. It is better to dive in with the fullest honesty possible and ask for their forgiveness and support for the days, weeks, and months ahead.
The important thing to do during the conversation is to take responsibility for what happened. It might be tempting to blame the mother for things or find fault with siblings. This will lead to arguments and conflict rather than healing. They have likely been trying to offer to support the best they know how and the whole family needs help. However, this is about personal responsibility and choice to honestly assess the situation. The most important thing a person can do is convince the family they’re serious and admit the need for help. Openly take responsibility and tell them a new leaf is being turned over now with recovery on the horizon. Don’t take for granted any of them will be there for you in the future. The reality is you’ve probably hurt people and need to give them some space. Own the mistakes, the hurt, and pain caused while also telling them you are ready to move forward and seek help to recover.
The next step is to find a recovery place to heal. Looking forward to healing can be filled with emotions like anxiety, stress, fear, and other emotions. Maybe this is not the first time seeking treatment and there is hesitation by everyone involved about whether this will be the time that sticks. Look for a place that offers what you need to heal. A center will look different depending on if it is inpatient or outpatient. With all the challenges, it helps to find the right place to work on healing so it feels like restoration is on the horizon.
Finding hope starts with admitting addiction is the current reality but the new reality is recovery, with family supporting the journey all the way. It is never easy to ask the family to help on the journey but with the support of those who come alongside you, it can empower you to new heights in recovery.
Forge is a place to come and recover your life from addiction. We help you reimagine what is possible and create the life you’ve been dreaming of.
Call us today: 1-888-224-7312