An American Addiction Centers Resource

New to the Forums?Join or

How do you help your family member who is not an addict?

Discussion in 'Helping an Addicted Loved One' started by rainbowguard, Jan 17, 2015.

  1. rainbowguard

    rainbowguard Senior Contributor

    My aunt was a victim of abuse when my uncle was still alive. He was a heavy alcoholic even though he stopped (too late) after he was diagnosed with a liver disease. She never told us that she was physically abused, but just like other domestic violence case, she might hid the truth.

    However, after my uncle passed away, I noticed that her conditions did not improve. She constantly feels depressed and has to ask her family members to accompany her to a psychiatrist and she is taking some medications. The good thing is, her kids started to be able to make money while going to college. I feel sympathy for her. What I feel bad about is the fact that her condition is not because of her own fault. My dad constantly listens to her and fortunately, my other uncle has some extra money that he can use to support her as well. My question is, what would you do to help her if you were in my situation?
  2. KNH

    KNH Active Contributor

    I would just continue to keep contact with her. It sounds like even though she still suffers from depression, it's beneficial to her to have you and your family members there for her. I am glad she seeks help with a therapist, too. If she pulls away from you and others, it's likely her situation will worsen, so I think you just need to be there for her and listen to her when she needs to talk.
  3. Rainman

    Rainman Community Champion

    It's said that the best things in life are free. Love doesn't cost a thing. And the truth is love can achieve a lot more anything else can't. All you need to do is prove to your aunt that you love her and be there for her. Just be there for her and once she's come to depend on your support, gently guide her away from drugs.
  4. MrsJones

    MrsJones Community Listener Community Listener

    Maybe she needs to move from her home if she hasn't already. Having constant reminders surrounding her may be contributing to her depression. Has this been suggested to her or between family concerned family members?
  5. zaerine

    zaerine Community Champion

    I would also listen to her and be with her if she will ask me or I do have time to spend with her. She needs someone there to make her feel that there is someone ready to help her. I also agree that changing home or environment will do good for her to help her move on.
  6. pinksavage22

    pinksavage22 Member

    The best thing in the world when someone is dealing with depression is just to be there for them. The most simple things as a phone call or stopping by for a visit can help show that you and other family members are there to support her. I think it is great she is going to see a therapist, just keep encouraging her to keep at it and continue to support her, love her and encourage her. Maybe even suggest getting out for a day trip or a weekend to take her to new environments or doing something she enjoys may also help in the recovery process just to get her mind off her past.
  7. PerkyNorm4u

    PerkyNorm4u Member

    Change of environment is good. You can also get external help from counselors to assist her in overcoming her ordeal. The heal process of abuse does not comes overnight, so gradually after counseling and engagement in other activities to relax the mind will help. Family support is also paramount, especially if it is a closely knit family, show them repeatedly love and support. A phone twice per day is helpful to free the mind, long drive to the country and picnic at the park.
  8. gracer

    gracer Community Champion

    Someone who is depressed and has undergone too much trauma needs more patience and understanding. The others are right in saying that merely just being there and having your presence felt can help your aunt in ways you cannot imagine. Sometimes depressed people don't need advising or pushing. All they really need is a silent heart willing to spend time with them in silence. Have the patience to keep on having your presence felt with your aunt. Wait for her to open up voluntarily. In time she will do that, once she feels ready to do so.
  9. GabinoTapia

    GabinoTapia Active Contributor

    I agree with Gracer. I think that you and your family should spend time with her by traveling when you can and helping her start to do various activities to help her forget about her stress. I also have a bad stress level and I find it best to forget about it by going to the gym and working out. Working out helps me and I can tell that my stress levels have dropped. You should help her find a hobby, something that will help her keep her mind clear and busy.