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How Forceful Do I Want To Be?

Discussion in 'Helping an Addicted Friend' started by Glen, Nov 10, 2014.

  1. c9h2ua

    c9h2ua Member

    I think it is really hard to balance, because no one wants to be forced by others. However, they may actually need help while they don't know they need help. If I were you, I would try my best to tell him what his problems is, but don't bring him hard feeling. Also, don't make him feel that you are annoying him. Try to approach him while you can.
  2. amethyst

    amethyst Community Champion

    The truth is that you can't tell anyone anything until they are ready to hear it. If an addicted friend tells you directly that they need some strong guidance from you, than go for it, but otherwise try not to exert too much force over them, no matter how well you mean it.
    People who are recovering from substance abuse are particularly vulnerable and can be hurt or irritated easily. Pushing them too hard, doesn't ease their problems.
  3. NikkiDesrosiers

    NikkiDesrosiers Senior Contributor

    I don't think you have to be 'foreceful' as you say - rather try being assertive. You cannot make someone get help if they simply refuse to see that their addiction is causing them problems - but you can be stern and assertive to the fact that you love them and will not enable them to continue this way. You have to let them know that in terms of your relationship -- their actions have consequences.
  4. light

    light Active Contributor

    Some people are taken more seriously when they speak in a firm, calm ton of voice, meanwhile looking into your eyes. Being gentle is not a weakness and trying to be forceful might seem to your friend like you are threatening him and nobody likes to be threatened. If you don’t want to lose your friends you should pass from forceful to being firm and serious, in order for them to take your message. What seems so strange to me is that how can ‘a friend’ not understand that you are speaking seriously?! There must be a very strong connection between you and your friend, the reason why you are friends is that you are able to understand each other, and support most of your thoughts.
  5. kgord

    kgord Community Champion

    Well it is a fact that some people don't want help or are too set in their ways to change. I have a friend who is over 60 who has had alcohol problems his whole life. He also has serious health issues, but not necessarily because of the alcohol. I mean I just don't see him really quitting at this point unless there is simply no other way. I just feel bad because he may be doing more damage to himself by drinking..
  6. Mims

    Mims Active Contributor

    Being too aggressive, even with good intentions, can backfire quickly. There's a thin line between being protective and authoritative. Being overly forceful will make your friend dismiss your advice more readily, and may harm your chances of helping them recover. Although a lax approach can have the same outcome, it can be better than being a mom to your friend. Try calmly giving them advice and letting them know how you feel about their problem. Be persistent but not overly so.
  7. jwmann2

    jwmann2 Member

    The most important thing you can is not enabling their addiction. Don't go out drinking with them. Don't give them rides to a dealer's house, etc. Make sure they know you're there for them but don't support their addiction in any way.
  8. L_B

    L_B Community Champion

    This is correct and perfectly said. I have tried it all I have been forceful and gentle. I have been down right mean and I have her loving. I have yelled and I have cried. I have been supportive and I have walked away. Nothing I have said or done has made one bit of difference. He does what he wants to and he doesn't care what effect it has on me or on us. He just doesn't care. As long as he is feeding his addiction he is happy in his own little world.
  9. dyanmarie25

    dyanmarie25 Community Champion

    Well, you can help, and support your friends without being too forceful or preachy. Just try to encourage them to change their habits, and give them words of wisdom so they would somehow be able to realize what they're doing with their lives. They might listen to you if you would just show to them that you're really sincere, and concerned about their welfare.
  10. tyannaaa_

    tyannaaa_ Member

    Well most definitely you want to be gentle but also have a firm standing. If you are too gentle towards them they won't take you or the situation seriously. Being firm such as, having a firm tone when speaking to them not too harsh. This will give your friend an eye opener maybe helping them to realize that you want what is best for them.
  11. endoftherainbow

    endoftherainbow Active Contributor

    I agree with DancingLady's post above. It's better to be firm than forceful, but you have to know when to be both, one or the other, or give a little space to them. Give them time to come around and understand what they are doing to themselves and to those that love them. But...and this is important...if they don't listen, then you must find a way by force or any other means necessary to help them if they are passing away slowly in front of your eyes and you have to do something. Because you're close to them, you feel like you have to be careful how you approach it. But there's a point where you have to do something. Especially if it's life or death. If you don't, you'll wish you did. This I know.