The number of unintentional deaths due to overdoses is growing every year in Maryland. Reaching out and helping someone with an addiction can mean the real difference between life and loss in some cases. So, how do you make sure you do the best job without forcing the other person to pull away?
We have put together some of the most important suggestions when it comes to how you should act when reaching out. By following these simple steps, you should be able to help guide someone toward the help they need.
Dos When Helping an Addict
These are some of the most beneficial things you can do when dealing with an addict and the impact they have on themselves and others. Above all these, though, show empathy.
Make sure you have all the best information on hand to help you understand every step of the journey the other person is on. You need to have a solid handle on the nature of addiction and its complexities, though also understand you do not need to know everything yourself.
Investigate the substance in question and its effects, and most importantly try not to make assumptions.
Active listening can be very important when it comes to helping someone. They might be in the throes of powerful emotions, maybe even fear, and you need to ensure you create a safe environment for them.
Validate how they feel, try not to be judgmental, and build trust so you can help guide them towards a better path.
Suggest Professional Help
While you might want to help in every way, drug addiction recovery is a complex and lengthy process. You need to recognize, even if you are the spouse of an addict, you cannot be all the help they receive. Look into addiction treatment services to act as professional aid in addition to what you provide.
Don’ts When Helping an Addict
Choosing the wrong path can lead to more dangerous behavior on the part of the addict. So, try to avoid the following to ensure you do not make things harder for them.
Enable Unhealthy Behavior
When you are living with an addict, it is sometimes hard to avoid behaviors that make it harder for them to stay away from their addiction. Do not make excuses for them, and do not shield them from consequences. Be their support, but not their crutch.
Play the Blame Game
Sometimes it is hard to forget that addiction is a disease, not a failure of the individual. Do not blame them, and do not abuse their wish to deal with this in private if they are moving forward healthily. Offer compassion and be supportive, showing them the consequences of their actions while not deriding them.
Try to Solve the Issue On Your Own
You cannot do this by yourself. You are an important part of the process, but step back when you need to and get a professional to help instead.
Helping Someone With Addition Can Be Hard
When helping someone with addiction, the above tips should be a good start to get you on the right track. Still, the issue will be complicated, so make sure you have all the information you can get.
If you need more help, the rest of our blog should have more tips for building you up as a force for good in this person’s life. So, remember to check out the other articles on our site today.