What Can I Do as the Friend of an Addict?
Most resources and websites designated for instructing individuals on how to cope or help an addicted loved one are aimed at family members of the addict. In many instances, addicts may be living far away from their family, and the family may have no idea about their loved one’s addictive behavior or may be involved in the addictive behavior themselves.
Friends of an addict are just as influential as the addict’s family when it comes to getting help. Any person who has the addict’s best interest at heart will recognize the importance of speaking up and addressing the issue. Often times, friends of an addict are afraid that it is not their place to intervene or that they will jeopardize the relationship by confronting the issue. The fact of the matter is that any person who ignores a friend who is engaged in a self-destructing addiction does not have the addict’s best interest at heart. Addiction is a disease that will progress and bring about an infinite number of adverse health, relationship, occupational and financial consequences. Addiction destroys a person’s wellbeing and quality of life, and the issue needs to be addressed if the addict wishes to have any hope for a happy, healthy and long future.
How to Help a Friend Struggling with Addiction
There are many ways to go about helping a friend who is struggling with addiction. Every situation is different, and there is no one right way to deal with the issue. For some people, the first step may be to confront the addict in a one-on-one conversation. Some addicts want to get help but don’t know how, or they are too afraid to ask for help or acknowledge the situation. Having a friend express concern may be all an addict needs to get the ball rolling and get treatment help.
For others, the addiction may be too severe. The addict may be in denial, and more intense approaches may be needed. If the addict has a healthy relationship with family members, it may be best to get the family involved. Friends of the addict may contact the family and inform them of what is going on and specific examples of why they are concerned. The family may wish to deal with the situation on their own or keep friends involved. In either case, it is important to respect the family’s wishes but to also stay involved with the matter. Family members may confront the addict, but the addict may brush off their concerns or lie and say that the addictive behavior isn’t true or isn’t as bad as what the family has heard.
Friends of an addict may also wish to hold their own intervention, with or without the addict’s family. This option is best suited for addicts who deny or refuse help after the issue has been confronted. This is also a great option for individuals who are not close to their families or for individuals who have families abusing drugs and alcohol themselves. Individuals who want to help an addicted friend but don’t know how can seek assistance from intervention and recovery professionals
Want to Help a Friend Struggling with Addiction?
If you want to help a friend who is struggling with addiction, you can call our toll-free number for help. Our addiction counselors are available 24 hours a day to assist you with your questions and concerns, and they can help you find the intervention, treatment and recovery resources that are right for you.