How Can Someone Get Sober When They Are in Denial?

man in denial struggling with addiction

Only a small percentage of people decide to get sober on their own. Without having some significant ramifications that occur directly from their drug and alcohol use, many people choose to stay in their active addiction. The ease and comfort of alcoholism or addiction can keep a person from seeing that they are doing damage to themselves and everyone else around them. 

Denial is commonly displayed among people who suffer from addiction. No one wants to admit that they are physically and mentally different from other people who can drink or use “normally.” Expressing denial is how they believe they can go on without feeling bad about what they are doing. 

They Do Not Want to Feel Responsible

Taking responsibility for specific actions is difficult for someone who is still active in their addiction. They already drink and use to numb the pain they are feeling, so the likelihood they will come right out and say they need help is not probable. Most likely, a person still drinking and using will refuse to take any responsibility at all. Instead, they will justify anything, so they do not have to look bad. Blaming others seems like a more comfortable choice to deflect from how they feel on the inside.

They Are Incapable of Being Vulnerable

Addiction causes someone to build walls up to protect themselves from others who want them to stop drinking and using. Instead of admitting they are hurting, they will act like everything is hunky-dory to deny that they need anything from anyone. Asking for help is a sign of weakness for many people. Appearing weak is not an acceptable option. Whether an individual wants “street cred” or wants everyone to believe they have it all together when they don’t, seeking help is often a bridge too far. Admitting their addiction puts them in a vulnerable position that they are not ready to be in. 

They Believe They Are in Control

There is a vast discrepancy in what people believe is happening and what is actually happening. A person under the influence will mistakenly think they are in control of their habit. The truth, however, is that drugs and alcohol have control over them. The denial they have about who is in power can be proven by the situations they put themselves in and the lengths they are willing to go to get drunk or high. Drugs and alcohol certainly have control over a person when they go against their moral compass to do whatever it takes to appease their addiction.

They Are Not Ready to Face the Problem

There are not too many people who want to admit they are addicted to drugs and alcohol. They are embarrassed and ashamed that they let everything get as far as it has. Rather than face the problem, they will deny everything that’s happened to them. The main reason for their denial is that they know the alternative of getting sober will be a complicated process. Cleaning up the mess means looking at their issues, facing hurt relations head-on, taking advice from medical professionals, or going to jail. Drinking and using may seem like a great idea to avoid looking in the mirror and surrendering. Although recovery may appear to be strenuous and tedious, staying in the throes of addiction takes just as much work with more immense ramifications. 

They Downplay the Consequences

Since drugs and alcohol take away a person’s real sense and reason, they will act like they “got this” or that they are “just not that bad” even though everything is falling down around them. Even though they have gone to jail, have lost everything, or have failing health, they can’t stop using. These substances have such a hold over them that they deny that drugs and alcohol have anything to do with the consequences. Addiction is cunning, baffling, and powerful enough to persuade a person there is something else causing the consequences.

They Refuse to Acknowledge the Situation

Whenever a person addicted to drugs or alcohol is confronted about their situation, they tend to run. Acting as if nothing has happened is their coping mechanism unless someone points out what they did. A person suffering from addiction feels all alone, so talking about what is going on makes them feel like everyone is against them. Most loved ones do not get that acknowledging the situation means that the addicted person will feel exposed and embarrassed. Getting sober might be a no-brainer for observers, but the addict usually has a warped perspective.

When these examples take place, a person could talk their way right out of their recovery. There is a recovery plan for them when they are ready to accept. They need to put their prejudices aside, or else they could miss the opportunity of a lifetime. Recognizing the need for cessation of drugs and alcohol and making an effort to learn tools for relapse prevention can give someone a life beyond their wildest dreams. All that is necessary is a seed of willingness to see their recovery start unfolding before their very eyes. 

The Detox Center of Colorado is here to support you when you are ready to make a change. We offer a continuum of care that is effective in assisting someone in gaining long-term sobriety. Our treatment culture is all about building unity for those who have suffered enough from their drug and alcohol addiction. Through evidence-based therapy options and Colorado’s endless adventure, Valiant Detox fosters connection and close-knit community of recovery-minded individuals. Clients are restored to full health and experience life-changing healing with the power of recovery. Call us today to start your journey: (303) 952-5035.


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