How to Talk to a Drug Addict About Getting Help: Tips

May 19, 2020 | recovery , rehab

listening and speaking with empathy helps to speak to an addict

It can be challenging to talk to a loved one about their addiction without being too harsh. It’s easy to come off harshly and say things that are detrimental to your relationship. While the right thing to say is dependent on the individual, it is essential to know how to talk to a drug addict before voicing your concerns.

Express Your Concerns With Understanding.

Before opening up a conversation where you point out the flaws of a drug addict’s behavior or accusing one of having a substance use disorder, you should consider the likelihood that they can feel attacked or judged, which can be harmful to your relationship.

Instead of just making the points you want to make, you should be sure to ensure you don’t come off harsh or pushy. Showing love and concern for their well-being is vital. Let them know why you are concerned. If you are seeing that they aren’t the person, friend, or spouse they once were, communicate why this is hurtful or hard for you without making them feel as though they are a terrible person.

It can be hard to communicate your concerns with one’s behavior without overstepping boundaries and offending someone. This does not mean one needs to understate the unfortunate outcomes of a loved one’s drug addiction, either. Instead, be firm, honest, and compassionate.

listening and speaking with empathy helps to speak to an addict

Let Them Talk.

Part of talking to a drug addict is hearing them out. Listening to their side of the story is just as important as addressing the issue in the first place. This is a great way to establish what the first steps toward recovery are and how to take them.

If they can speak freely and voice their concerns, it will reduce the likelihood of an adverse outcome to your conversation. It can be the best way to identify what steps need to be taken for recovery and how you can best help them along the way.

Assure Them You Will Be With Them During The Process.

The road to recovery is long and hard. Going through it alone will not only make it more difficult but can even be detrimental to the recovery process. When communicating one’s concerns with a drug addict, it should be understood that you will be there with them every step of the way.

Talk to them about their process, encourage healthy practices, spend time with them, and also let them make their own choices. Showing support does not mean taking the wheel and making decisions for them; it’s about being there with them as they make the right choices that are necessary to achieve sobriety.

Being there for a loved one during recovery doesn’t mean going along with everything they do. They will make mistakes and may even use them during their recovery. During this, you need to understand that not communicating with them during these periods is still being there for them.

Your part doesn’t end with just telling them you will be there for them. Being consistent is critical. If you promise to be there, be there. If you promise not to stand idly by as they use, then don’t. The point is, whatever you say you will do for your loved one, you need to do it.

Does An Intervention Work?

An addict is more likely to seek addiction treatment after an intervention has taken place. Does this mean they work? No. Just because one is more likely to seek treatment does not imply an intervention directly affects the likelihood of recovery.

Before staging an intervention, one should be aware that there are risks to this approach. During an intervention, ultimatums will likely be given to the person struggling with addiction to persuade them to seek addiction treatment

If the person of concern gets angry and storm out before the session is completed, those who’ve made threats to cut off communication or supply to the addicted individual must be followed through. Just because the intervention doesn’t go as easy as one has expected, one shouldn’t give up hope. Following through with promises may be what’s needed to get through.

Of course, no physical or psychological risks are present, but the results of an unsuccessful intervention can be very harmful to relationships. This is why an intervention should be considered a last resort when trying to talk to reach a drug addict.

Concluding Thoughts:

During your conversation with a drug addict, remember that they are a person too. They are feeling things that are driving them to use; they want better for themselves but may not feel they are worth it or may not even be aware of how bad their situation is.

Remember that your concerns are coming from a place of love, and no matter how harsh the situation is, this should be communicated. You are not there to yell at them but are instead there to help them get better. Talk with them, not at them.

DayBreak is NOT just another drug rehab center – it is a treatment solution founded on the core principles of change. Relapse no longer needs to be a part of your story, call us when you are ready for a life rediscovered…844-447-3239