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Having a Loving Relationship with an Addict

Having a Loving Relationship with an Addict

If you are in a relationship with an addict or loving an addict, you may often find yourself feeling sad and helpless. Addicts usually take advantage of their loved ones by lying or pretending. For example, they could steal your money to buy drugs, become irresponsible at work, or keep bad company. This can be very damaging for their relationships, especially when they lose interest in everything else.

While it’s pretty normal to feel distressed or betrayed by their behaviors, you must understand that they cannot help themselves. People who suffer addiction to substances like alcohol, drugs, and other habits find it challenging to break away. That’s why they could run away from rehab, break their promises to quit, or start isolating themselves from you.

If you are experiencing this, you may wonder how to love such people and help them recover from addiction. This article contains tips on how to maintain a loving relationship without causing further harm to them or yourself.

Having a Loving Relationship with an Addict

What to Do If the Person You Love Is an Addict

Loving an addict requires you to understand that addiction is a disease, and you cannot help them on your own. Sometimes, your attempts to express love or support could do more harm.

This usually happens when you micro-manage their lives. Your loved one could become dependent on you and may go back to being an addict if you become unavailable. So, you would have enabled them rather than addressing the actual problem.

However, you can use several methods to help them gain more progress on their journeys to recovery. Here are some recommendations for you in detail:

  • Come to terms with realitySometimes, we choose denial instead of accepting that our friends or family truly have addiction problems. This is because we don’t want the fear of dealing with rehab or the need for treatment to come true.However, the reality is that substance addiction is a severe challenge. And the first step in dealing with it is acknowledging that it exists. So, if you feel that something is not right, it probably isn’t. Therefore, rather than pretending that the substance abuse will stop on its own, you must realize that it needs to be dealt with internationally.
  • Understand that they are differentAddiction changes people. For instance, your generous and strong brother could become frail and hostile. Or your jovial partner can lose their sense of humor.So, the sooner you accept that the addict is no longer the friend you used to know, the better. This does not mean you shouldn’t love them. However, accepting that they are different will minimize anger or frustration. And you will be able to help them better.
  • Acknowledge ways that you could be hurting themPeople who are in love relationships have lots of influence over one another. So, you should not rule out the possibility of being partly responsible. What you need is some honest self-reflection. For example, is it possible that your actions are responsible for the addiction? Or do you store drinks in the house with an alcohol addict?You must examine yourself to know if you are contributing to the problem in any way. If you find such behaviors or actions, please stop them.
  • Be honest with themLying and pretending to an addict will harm your relationship in the long run. Instead, you should let them know if you think they have a problem that needs to be solved.If you keep up the pretense that they don’t need help, they may end up hurting you or themselves. So, have a conversation about it. Let the person know when you observe things you think they should work on. Share treatment programs and encourage them when they make progress in recovery. These will be helpful in their sobriety.
  • Don’t make them a pet projectLearning to live healthily and responsibly is an essential part of recovery. If you overindulge yourself with someone’s life, they could become dependent on you. This means that their sobriety would be at risk when you become unavailable. They could go back to substance abuse or find it hard to cope with society.It’s also dangerous for you because you become overly focused on them. Chances are that you could fall into depression or addiction if things don’t go well.
  • Set boundariesBoundaries are essential for every relationship. However, if you are loving an addict, you must take extra care to set and maintain emotional and physical limits.Creating boundaries will be helpful to both you and the addict. You will be able to see things more objectively and give honest feedback. You can also take actions in the person’s interest.Boundaries also help to ensure that you are not overwhelmed by emotions. On the one hand, the addict may feel overwhelmed by your expectations. The risk is that they could sink deeper into addiction if they fail. On the other hand, you can become frustrated if your expectations are not met. So, setting boundaries is a way to preserve your relationship without hurting one another.
  • Protect your healthDealing with an addict can be physically and emotionally draining. This is because you may often experience negative feelings like sadness and helplessness.So, you must take care of yourself. One of the ways to protect your mental health is by setting boundaries. This will help you take time off to live your own life and not feel overwhelmed.
  • Support, don’t enableSupporting an addict means doing things that encourage the long-term goal of recovery. On the other hand, when you enable them, you only make things look better for a short while. For instance, buying them gifts, paying their bills, and refusing to share honest feedback are not helpful ways.

Enabling is dangerous because it can encourage addiction. Instead, help access rehab facilities and participate in treatment programs when required to.

Conclusion

If you have friends, family, or a partner struggling with addiction, you should get professional help. But, don’t wait till it’s too late. At ecosoberhouse.com, we provide necessary resources to help people recover from addiction. So, contact us to get some help today.

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