You come home from work to a house with items thrown about everywhere, traces of cocaine on your coffee table, and your roommate is once again nowhere to be found.
To many, this is an alarming scene, but for you this is just another Tuesday.
How to Live With An Addict
Whether they are your roommate, partner, sibling, or child, if you are cohabitating with an addict, you know that it isn’t easy. Luckily, our Chicago addiction treatment center has some tips on living with an addict to help get your through.
Don’t Ignore the Issue
It is easy to brush off the problem or talk yourself into thinking the situation isn’t that bad. This can be dangerous and can lead to the addict’s problems getting worse. Don’t wait until your loved one or roommate has hit rock bottom to finally accept that there is a problem. It can be harder to get help when matters reach this level.
Addiction is a disease, but if you are not struggling with it yourself, it can be hard to understand. Instead of resenting the addict for what you believe is just a “moral shortcoming,” you should try to understand what they are going through. Some rehabs offer family therapy for loved ones of addicts to assist with this process. Learning everything you can about their addiction is also the best way to get them help.
It is important to set boundaries when living with a drug addict. Left to their own devices and without any rules, addicts can quickly spiral out of control. They may try to manipulate or take advantage of you. They could even try to steal money from you to fuel their habits. Setting rules and boundaries can help prevent this as well as keep you from unknowingly enabling the addict which could only make their behavior worse.
Get Them Help If You Can
There is a fine line between getting someone help and trying to fix them. You cannot get someone help if they do not want it. When you are living with a drug addict it can be hard to find this balance. You can take steps to try and get them into treatment, but you need to understand that they may not be receptive. Reach out for help from others. Professional addiction interventionists may also be able to get this person into treatment.
Take Care of Yourself
It is important to remember that you are not alone and to not let your needs suffer because of someone else’s drug habits. Along with finding articles online, there are plenty of other resources out there for someone in your situation. Join a support group, talk to a therapist, or read books on how to survive living with an addict. Don’t forget to take time for yourself as well. Living with an alcoholic or addict can be stressful, so it is important that you do things to help negate this stress.
While you may feel guilty about deserting them, if, after all of your attempts to help they still refuse to get treatment and their actions are putting you in a bad or unsafe position, it may be time to move out. Just because you love them doesn’t mean you should have to live with drug deals in your home or complete neglect of your living space. Moving out can help you start to rebuild your life.
If someone you know is struggling with a drug addiction or you are living with an addict, try to get them help. Don’t let matters get out of control. At Banyan Chicago, we offer various programs and therapies to help people overcome their addiction issues.
Alyssa is Banyan’s Director of Digital Marketing & Technology. After overcoming her own struggles with addiction, she began working in the treatment field in 2012. She graduated from Palm Beach State College in 2016 with additional education in Salesforce University programs. A part of the Banyan team since 2016, Alyssa brings over 5 years of experience in the addiction treatment field.
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