When one family member is affected by addiction, it impacts everyone in the home. Regardless if they like to admit it or not, most people know a problem exists, but addressing it can be uncomfortable and difficult to do. Family dynamics and roles evolve as a coping mechanism, and while it may seem easier to just ignore the situation that’s actually the worst thing to do.
Addiction, whether it is related to drugs, alcohol, or some other type of compulsive behavior can have dire consequences for both the person directly living with the issue and the entire family. Resentment, embarrassment, and frustration are common emotions experienced by family members as they watch a loved one lose his job, get into legal trouble, suffer health issues, or become violent, etc., as a result of the addiction. Addiction can also tear families apart and even be deadly.
In many families, there can be someone who may unknowingly support the individual in his destructive behavior. This support can be financial or emotional, and while well-meaning, almost always serves to perpetuate the disease of addiction and can seriously hamper recovery efforts. This person typically doesn’t like to discuss the topic of addiction and would rather pretend that everything is alright from the outside. Sometimes they may display a decision to just “live with it” or not get involved.
The first step toward recovery is acknowledging that a problem does exist. The family’s role in this process is crucial as oftentimes it is difficult for the affected person to see past the blinders of his addiction. Since addiction is considered a disease that affects the entire family, it’s also important that each member participates in the treatment process.
Family Guidance Center can provide your family with the necessary tools and resources to identify symptoms of addiction and move forward with recovery. To find out how, contact our team of addiction treatment professionals.