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Advice: How do I break it slowly to family?

Discussion in 'Helping an Addicted Loved One' started by Snakevenom, Aug 4, 2015.

  1. Snakevenom

    Snakevenom Member

    There are a few people who are addicts in my family, how can I break it slowly to them about it? Telling them that they're an addict too fast might cause them to get defensive and they may get the idea that I'm judging them which has previously happened with other people I knew who were addicted to certain substances.
  2. PerkyNorm4u

    PerkyNorm4u Member

    You are right in your assessment of not telling them too fast. As a person who grew up witnessing alcohol and drug abuse in her family, the one thing I learn is a person will likely become very rigid and defensive if you try to tell them their problem straight out or in a forceful manner. I know my mom was great at confronting substance abuse in my family. I'll never forget how she approached my uncle. It was just my mom, uncle and I. My uncle was relaxed and very easygoing. My mom slowly brought up the issue in a conversational kind of way by first asking how he was feeling and so forth. She proceeded into the problem and getting his opinion while kindly offering her own without judging him. I can't remember it verbatim cause I was 12 or 13 at the time. I just remember her being incredibly gentle and somewhat getting him to slightly admit to his problem.
  3. sonia11

    sonia11 Senior Contributor

    It depends on the situation. If the people in your family are not too far down that path yet, to the point where you feel their lives are in immediate danger, have a private conversation with them. Ask them casually how certain things are going that you know are being affected by their addiction. If you don't feel you can do this alone, bring a trusted family member or friend along for the discussion. Of course, if they're more heavily addicted to the substance where time is of the essence, you may have to just intervene quickly.
  4. MyDigitalpoint

    MyDigitalpoint Community Champion

    No matter how good are our wishes to get an addiction broken, people will always react defensively and will deny to have any problem.

    I believe that rather than talk to them, you should manage to raise awareness of those problems they are having or will be having due to their addictions. This way they may get the warning by themselves and put the remedy voluntarily.
  5. Cheeky_Chick

    Cheeky_Chick Community Champion

    I don't think that it is a great idea to just come out and say that they're an addict right away, as this is something that is likely to scare and alienate them from you even more. You should keep an eye on them and ask if they're alright, and mention subtle references to what you think their problem is. This might make them see the issue for real without you having to do anything about it, which would of course be a good thing. If you are worried about their safety, though, then sometimes it is better to just come right out and say it.
  6. Rainman

    Rainman Community Champion

    Sometimes a direct approach works better than hinting at the possibility of there being a problem. Most addicts who aren't willing to change yet will reject all offers of help be they direct or indirect. Most people can read between the lines quite well.

    Tell those you are concerned about of your concerns and once that [and their denials] are out of the way, you could [slowly] do all you can to convince them to battle their addictions.
  7. anorexorcist

    anorexorcist Community Champion

    I think that you are going to have the same reaction if you do it directly or not, but you can do in a slowly and informative way: try to show them different sources of information about their addiction, other people experiences with that addiction, and how they recovered of it and let them know how dangerous is. This could be inspiring for them... And maybe they will recognize their addiction.
  8. MNyte

    MNyte Member

    Two ways to do it: tell them like it is, or indirectly imply it. Make them aware of their addiction - whether it be by informing them about stories of people dying of whatever it is they are addicted to, or informing some statistic about the substance they use.
  9. GabinoTapia

    GabinoTapia Active Contributor

    I find watching either a show or a movie about someone who struggled with addiction with the person a great way for the person to know what can happen to them. I think that you should try this out and then talk to the person. Let the person know how you feel and how it is affecting the person and others around you.
  10. Winterybella

    Winterybella Community Champion

    Snakevenom, are you absolutely sure about their addiction? I actually thought someone very close to me was addicted but after several conversations I had to conclude that he just likes to smoke some weed from time to time. Of course I might be wrong but telling someone they are addicted can be a tricky thing especially if they are not. In my case I did not have to think much about it as the person is like a son to me and we freely talk about everything.

    Whatever the case, don't be judgmental or too preachy. Most of the addicts I know hate both approaches. I hope you are able to help and that if they are not addicted you could stop that happening.