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What if they can't help themselves?

Discussion in 'Helping an Addicted Loved One' started by bavinnie, May 6, 2015.

  1. bavinnie

    bavinnie Member

    I'm practically surrounded by people within my family including my father, who have severe drug addiction problems and the one thing that keeps haunting me is this idea, that they will never change and there is nothing I can do about it. I've tried, Intervention, Rehab, Counselling and any number of other things to try and make them understand that they have a problem, and it hurts more people than just themselves. Most of them have been in and out of jail, halfway houses probation, drug court just about everything that has to do with correcting behavior and becoming sober. Through all this, not one of them NOT ONE has after many years has become sober for any length of time longer than their jail sentence, or their drug court sentence or a couple of months of rehab and then they go right back to where they were, if not worse. I mean my dad has been addicted to all different type of illegal, and legal drugs for 18+ years. He lost his business, his house, his wife, his family everything he ever had is gone and it doesn't even seem to phase him, I tried so hard for so long and I'll I can think is that maybe the only answer is that they can't stop unless they want to help themselves and maybe even through any amount of clarity of how self destructive this all is, they just don't care. If any of you have been in a boat like this and somehow figured it all out, please give me some insight.
    IrishHeather likes this.
  2. IrishHeather

    IrishHeather Active Contributor

    I know how you feel, my Dad is the exact same way yours is. So know that you are not alone, I cold tell you stories about him that would make Oprah cry. you asked if anyone had it all figured out. I certainly don't have it even a quarter of the way figured out, but I have come to a realization that helps me deal with it.

    Addicts have to hit rock bottom before they are ready to make a change in their lives, some peoples rock bottom is so deep that sometimes it takes longer to hit that bottom than a "life time".

    This saying is not meant to discourage anyone, it just means that for all you do to help someone you care about with addiction they will not get better until they truly want it for themselves. I have tried so many different things to help those I love that struggle with addiction and have failed many times. I used to beat myself up thinking I was not doing enough. All we can do is to be there for them, love, and support them in any way we can. We can motivate, inspire, and encourage our loved one, but in the end it is their own inner will that will bring healing.
  3. gracer

    gracer Community Champion

    That is the case of my friend's dad who just recently passed away. He was sick of liver cancer which was thought to be aggravated by his alcoholism. Up to the last days of his life he would still talk about wanting to have even a bottle of beer to drink. In the early stages if his cancer, when doctors were still figuring out if his liver tumor was cancerous or not he would still drink alcohol with his alcoholic friends. He seemed to not care at all about his condition until he finally died a few days back.

    This story is just one of the sad stories of drug and alcohol abuse. I'm not discouraging you too but I guess your parents have to recognize in themselves first that they have a real problem. I know you're the one who's feeling all the pain and burden right now because it's hard for you to see them that way. Maybe all you could do right now is to hope for a better tomorrow. If you are a spiritual person, I can say that praying it all out with your heart does help because I'm a living proof to that. I once was a heavy alcohol drinker and smoker, but when I connected with my spirituality everything began to come clear to me and I was able to change. Don't lose hope on your parents, just lift everything up to Him when you feel you couldn't take the burden anymore.
  4. ella

    ella Member

    Firstly I want you to pat yourself in the shoulder because you as a son/daughter didn't gave up an easy fight. You did your best and I think it's time for you to stop trying. Accept that you cannot help them. No one actually can but them alone. And for that to happen is for you to let them go. You are right, there is nothing you can do about it. So focus on your life and create a beautiful path away from drugs, alcohol, etc. Then give it all up to the Man above, let Him handle it all for you.
  5. zaerine

    zaerine Community Champion

    It is a great thing that you still there wanting them to change and you still hope. Sad to say that there are situations and people we cannot change no matter how hard we want to and tried to. Maybe there could be other support groups that could help those kind of addiction cases like non government organizations. Praying might help you have more strength and hope that it is not yet too late for them to change.
  6. CHelms

    CHelms Member

    I'm in a situation right now with my husband and need someone to talk to. I keep getting empty promises. He had the chance tonight to get help and after we got to the hospital he refused to go in. I knew he would do that, but I got him in the car all the way there, that's all that mattered. He swears he's going to go to an inpatient facility on Monday. If he doesn't then I'm through. I can't keep putting myself through this along with our two kids. I'm depressed and at a loss. I've done so much for him and all he does is take, take, take. He's got us in debt. I owe EVERYBODY for everything now. I have so much to buy back from pawn that he's taken. I just lost my bank acct from him writing bad checks on my acct and I owe $1k to them. I took a loan out on my car just to get my computer back from pawn so I could work. I don't know what to do. I'm at the end of the rope and there's a 100ft drop below me. Monday is my last straw, either he goes or we're done. I just don't know what else to do.
  7. Tremmie

    Tremmie Community Champion

    I feel for you, OP. It's a tough situation to deal with, I grew up with an alcoholic mother who neglected me a lot, and got very very angry when she was very drunk. Thankfully she stopped drinking on her own, I guess she must have had a moment of epiphany and realize she was destroying herself and her family. She made a lot stupid decisions while she was drunk, so did I when I was drunk and tripping.

    Truth is... you can't force anyone to help themselves. All you can do is to offer them support and encouragement, but that's it. They must really want to improve their lives, realize no their own they need help that they have a problem and they need help. Because no matter how many times you tell them that, odds are they will never get it... they must discover this on their own and feel the need to change their lives...

    Sadly some people never do it, they just keep falling deeper and deeper into the addiction. i hope this isn't the case of your dad! I wish you the best of luck and I hope one day he realizes he needs to stop.
  8. GabinoTapia

    GabinoTapia Active Contributor

    I have had family members who have died because it was too late for them to want to change, some did not even regret it. Addiction can be very hard to overcome. I would recommend to keep insisting, get help from other family members and friends. You need to get help to have patience because it may take some time. In this case though, time is running out so I insist that you should call a professional or consider to help you out tell them your situation and they will help.
  9. harold

    harold Community Champion

    You are really a brave person! I truly respect you. It is not easy to deal with this situation and stay sober. You are a roll model and should keep up being strong. If you have done all of these things and they have refused to change then the best thing you can do now is pray. Stop struggling to make a change by yourself and hand them over to God. You have already played your own roll. I believe that only God can help in this situation. It is really a situation that is above human comprehension. They need to take up the decision to help themselves. Evidently from what you have explained, it shows you have done your best. Let it go now. Again I respect your courage. Keep being the roll model they need. I wish you the best in this, and I wish that God will intervene and transform their lives.
  10. Rainman

    Rainman Community Champion


    “It's Never Over 'till it's over! Never Give Up! Never.”

    ― Winston S. Churchill


    Many of those who've lost much in their lives will find it hard to let go of drugs because it's the only thing that makes them cope with the losses. These people may hate what the drugs do to them but because they can't face the real world, they won't let go. Try to find a reason that will make this person fight. There has to be something they love. Something they can't afford to lose. If you can find just one thing that can motivate them to change it would relatively easier for them to accept the help you offer.
  11. karmaskeeper

    karmaskeeper Community Champion

    Sometimes people never change, and the result is death. I have known people that have died from illness due to their addiction and as a result of it. People are killed in many ways passing out in the road getting ran over by passing cars. Being drunk walking down a road get hit, and killed. Being in a wreck that was caused by drunk driving. The list goes on, and on. I'm speaking more of alcohol here then anything else. This is the main addiction for people in my circle. Some folks will never stop til it kills them. No matter how hard you may try, and save them sometimes you just can't.