Loving An Addict 13 Ways To Manage Loving An Addict

Many people who are addicted to drugs or alcohol want to quit, but find themselves unable to do so without help. If your partner is struggling with addiction, know that they are likely dealing with a lot of shame and guilt. Show them support and let them know that you’re there for them, no matter what.

But again, since love “addiction” doesn’t represent an actual addiction, these symptoms can’t be compared to the experience of true withdrawal from a substance you physically depend on. Addictive substances, including alcohol, nicotine, and many recreational drugs, trigger the release of a feel-good brain chemical called dopamine, and evidence suggests love can do the same. Although experts agree across the board that you can’t actually become addicted to relationships, or love in general, many relationship and post-breakup patterns can certainly resemble addiction. There are many steps you can take to stop being codependent, as it is fully possible to recover from. Taking care of your needs, establishing healthier boundaries, and communicating with others who experience codependency can all play a part in helping you change your patterns. Addiction recovery programs offer substantial literature, usually in the blog sections of their websites, about addiction-related issues.

How to set boundaries—and stick to them

These programs are great for people struggling with alcohol abuse or addiction. They’re also useful for those who have completed comprehensive treatment programs and need something to help them maintain sobriety. If you also struggle with addiction, it exacerbates the problem. Two drug addicts in love isn’t a healthy relationship, even if they adore each other.

  • Obviously when people think about addiction, they’re thinking about heroin or alcohol or gambling or pornography.
  • You want to be compassionate and supportive and help them through the struggle, but sometimes, leaving a drug addict is the only option.
  • So when people stop using their drug, they’re so terrified to be honest toward their loved one about what they’ve been doing.
  • And you can decide to live in a different way and to let go of that thing that you’ve been hanging on to, which you thought was your life raft—but which was really, you know, your anchor.
  • However, it’s important to research the group before you attend, as their philosophies may not mesh with your beliefs.

Addiction is a chronic, relapsing disease, meaning that it is a normal part of the recovery process. Referring someone to professional help can take the load off you while still giving the person the resources they need if they want to get help. Sometimes, a person may get to a point where they feel they have done everything they can to help a person. In some cases, the help you are giving may be doing more harm than good.

Common Issues in Relationships Affected by Addiction

You must recognize and be willing to break that enabling habit. Sherry Gaba, LCSW, is a licensed psychotherapist/author specializing in addictions, codependency, and underlying issues such as depression, trauma, and anxiety. It can lock you into destructive and harmful patterns of behavior.

  • So I just want to say that because I think it’s never too late.
  • Finally, a big part of learning how to help an addicted loved one is having an understanding that there’s no way you can fix them.
  • The focus then becomes what you did (moved them) rather than what they did (drinking so much that they passed out outside).
  • Accepting the partner has a problem and seeking help based on this is one way of acknowledging your needs.
  • If someone you love doesn’t want to go to rehab, getting professional support, like a health care provider or mental health professional, is helpful.
  • When the behaviors we thought would make us happy don’t, we’re forced to bridge the gap between where we are and where we want to be.
  • Are you wondering how to help a loved one with a drug or alcohol problem?

When it comes to treatment for alcohol addiction, there is no one-size-fits-all. Support groups like alcoholics anonymous, al-anon, and narcotics anonymous have shown to be helpful for individuals struggling with alcohol https://ecosoberhouse.com/ or narcotic addiction. Sometimes, a loved one may not be open to your help, but offering it or asking “How can I help? If someone opens up to you about addiction, it is important to reassure them that they are not alone.

Online Therapy: Is it Right for You?

And therefore, they have the potential for addiction where they didn’t have that before. Dr. Deena is the Chief Clinical Officer of Westwind Recovery®, an award-winning outpatient treatment center in Los Angeles where she oversees the clinical and administrative program and treatment methods. Dr. Deena is a doctor of psychology and licensed clinical social worker since 1993. Dr. Deena has appeared regularly on the Dr. Phil Show as an expert since 2003.

  • Addiction recovery programs offer substantial literature, usually in the blog sections of their websites, about addiction-related issues.
  • When the example is set that one person is the center of attention, others begin to feel less important, perhaps even less loved.
  • The first is to understand that we will never be able to control anyone but ourselves – so we can stop trying so hard to do so.
  • Try to be open and honest with your loved one without being aggressive or confrontational.
  • Asking a friend for help in some small aspect of your care is often a comfortable first step.
  • Millions of readers rely on HelpGuide.org for free, evidence-based resources to understand and navigate mental health challenges.

In fact, when we love an addict, we all too often become entrenched in their lives instead of our own. All of our conscious awareness can begin to revolve around that person’s plight – while our own needs are relegated to the back burner. Also, don’t be afraid to directly ask your loved one how they’re doing in the recovery phase.

What Is The Difference Between A Person Who Is Addicted And A Person Who Is An Abuser?

These comments can result in lasting damage to a child’s psyche. You do not have to put up with unacceptable behavior in your life. Keep in mind that someone with alcohol dependence usually loving an addict goes through a few stages before they are ready to make a change. Until they begin to contemplate quitting, any actions you take to “help” them quit will often be met with resistance.

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