Information for addiction can often be geared to the person trying to get sober and to give an indication to the person who is trying to help them to get sober of what to do. What about help for the family and friends who are in the crossfire? Addiction does not only affect the person who consumes drugs and alcohol. Addiction affects everyone who comes into contact with it.
If you have had to endure the addiction of a loved one, you also need some guidance to get through this situation. In fact, you may want to try to attend your own 12-Step program that is offered to the friends and family of someone who has an addiction. Al-Anon is a 12-Step program that lends support to someone who has experienced addiction firsthand with a loved one. The question you may be asking is how do you know Al-Anon is the right choice for you?
You Enable Their Behavior
Looking at your own behavior, you must see where you have provided them the resources to allow them to keep going in their addiction. Maybe you stopped giving them money, but if you are providing a cell phone, transportation, or anything else that allows them to drink or use, you are part of the problem. It may be difficult to see them suffering; however, it would be worse to see them overdose and die. You get to choose which you would rather be a part of – their life or their death.
You Need to Learn About Their Addiction
Educating yourself on addiction relates to you as well. If you find yourself following them to see where they are going, pouring out their hidden stash of drugs or alcohol, or constantly searching to see if they have brought drugs or alcohol into your house, your obsession is about them. Whereas their addiction makes them obsessed with drugs and alcohol, your addiction becomes stopping their addiction.
You Want to Set Boundaries
At some point, you have to realize that you have had enough of all this toxic behavior. The problem is you have no idea how to make them stop because you feel like you do not have the strength to fight with them. Al-Anon is a great tool for learning how to set boundaries because the program is centered around how to change your behavior by hearing how others have “detached with love”. You no longer have to cosign addictive behavior although you will need to put some tools in place to stick to your boundaries.
You Do Not Let Them Hit Their Bottom
You may have previously helped them with legal issues or with financial matters that could have kept them from getting sober. If they know that you will fix their problems every time something happens, then they never have to face the consequences they warrant. Your loved one needs to feel the impact of what their addiction has caused to those around them. You will need some suggestions on how to stop stealing their chance to see the changes they need to make by letting them fall on their own accord.
You Desire Some Support
There is no doubt you feel all alone on this journey of their addiction and you probably feel over-the-top-resentful. Al-Anon is full of people who feel the way you feel and need a way to also handle all the built-up pressure. Having a fellowship surrounding the commonalities of these unfortunate circumstances will allow you to build a rapport with others who can relate. Sharing in the solution can give you the support you need without being judged by others who may not understand your situation.
Al-Anon is meant to help mend families by showing you how to reset your life without codependency or enabling being a factor any longer. For you to really know if Al-Anon will work for you, find a local meeting to attend so you can gain some insight on how to proceed with coping with a loved one’s addiction. You deserve support and solution just like they have access to. Together with other members of Al-Anon, you can learn how to take care of yourself first before you attempt to take care of others. Instead of trying to make their life better, you can focus on your making your life more fulfilling by spending your day trying to fix your own issues. You will feel better and accomplished by being productive in your own recovery.
Another aspect to remember is that if you are recovering from addiction, you may also need Al-Anon to help you deal with the wreckage from other people in your life who are still drinking and using. There are “Double Winners” meetings that are aimed to help self-proclaimed alcoholics and addicts use Al-Anon to also achieve healthy relationships when dealing with addiction in others.
Offering a full range of recovery and mental health services, Detox Center of Colorado offers “Expanded Recovery” to enrich our clients’ lives in mind, body, and spirit. Through evidence-based therapy options and the endless adventure of Colorado, Detox Center of Colorado fosters connection, encouraging clients to get connected to themselves, their peers, their families, and their higher power. With the power of recovery, clients are restored to full health and experience life-changing healing. Call us today for more information: 303-536-5463