Addiction: 5 things you need to know


Those of you who have suffered through the addiction of a loved one know how exhausting it is. The fact that they are such amazing manipulators blurs all the lines whips your emotions from one end to another.

But if you’ve set boundaries to protect yourself from the mayhem also knows as addiction, you need to keep these things in mind:

1. It’s really very hard to go from “tough love” to “rescue mode.”

They are polar opposites in terms of emotions. But often that’s what we have to do to save a loved one. Knowing that might be how it will happen, can help you prepare for it emotionally and make the switch when you need to.

2. A cry for help is often not pretty.

Even if it’s a cry for attention, give it to them. The amount of shame they feel while they are using is overwhelming. They feel utterly worthless. Their cry for help can often sound threatening. While you need to protect yourself, always ask them if they want your help to find recovery. But also protect yourself. If your addict has a history of violence, they you are right to keep your distance for your safety.

3. The window of opportunity to help is very narrow

And you have to go for it when it comes and fast which brings me to the next point…

4. Get educated and have a plan in place

Talk to other parents, others in recovery. ASK them what their rock bottom was so you might be able to see it. Where will you take them? What can you afford? Is there a mental illness involved? Who takes your insurance? (Here in Richmond, I recommend the Family Education Group at Northstar Community for education)

5. Use this guide published by a recovery professional

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Anne Moss Rogers

I am an emotionally naked mental health speaker, and author of the Book, Diary of a Broken Mind and co-author with Kim O'Brien PhD, LICSW of Emotionally Naked: A Teacher's Guide to Preventing Suicide and Recognizing Students at Risk. I raised two boys, Richard and Charles, and lost my younger son, Charles to addiction and suicide on June 5, 2015. I help people foster a culture of connection to prevent suicide, reduce substance misuse and find life after loss. My motivational mental health keynotes, training and workshop topics include suicide prevention, addiction, mental illness, anxiety, coping strategies/resilience, and grief. As talented and funny as Charles was, letting other people know they matter was his greatest gift. And now the legacy I try and carry forward in my son's memory. Mental Health Speakers Website. Trained in ASIST and trainer for the evidence-based 4-hour training for everyone called safeTALK.

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