General society views addiction as a personal problem that only affects drug users. Because of the harmful effects of substances, they don’t consider how it affects others. However, there’s a real connection between the adverse effects of addiction and family.
The Problems Between Loved Ones With Addiction and Family Members
Every day parents, spouses, and children witness family members struggle with addiction. Because of that, they can suffer emotional damage that requires family therapy to repair. In addition, the disease causes other medical and financial consequences for families.
When loved ones develop addictions, their drug use becomes the most important thing in their lives. As a result, their relationships aren’t as important, so they neglect family time and events. They also lose interest in school, work, and hobbies.
People with addiction become defiant and rebellious, exhibit mood swings, and could be physically or verbally abusive. If they can’t afford their drugs, they’ll resort to stealing from their family members.
All of these behavioral issues cause resentment, conflict, and distrust within families. However, those with the disease don’t always see the damage that they cause. If they do, they lack the ability to stop using on their own. In many cases, they feel too ashamed to ask their families for help.
The Health Risk
Simply watching loved ones deal with the side effects of substance use hurts family members. For example, some people with addiction lose weight to the point that their families don’t recognize them. When they avoid talking to family members for extended periods, they might end up on the street or deceased from an overdose. In response, family members can develop unhealthy coping mechanisms and suffer from trauma.
Two unhealthy coping mechanisms are enabling and codependency. With enabling, family members behave in a manner that allows their addicted loved ones to continue destructive patterns. With codependency, they rely on their role as caregivers of their loved ones to boost their self-worth.
The Financial Burden
Illegal drug makers and dealers are in the business of making money. Because of that, substance abuse is a costly problem. In some cases, people spend anywhere from $100 to thousands of dollars on drugs in a month.
With that kind of expense, some people run out of funds quickly. Then, they could empty retirement or college accounts or sell valuables to pay for drugs. Sometimes, they steal credit cards and cash too. For these reasons, loved ones with addiction and family members could lose their homes and the ability to afford meals.
Repair Your Family at Our Facility
If you or a loved one suffers from addiction, it’s never too late to get treatment. In Orange County, California, Pillars Recovery provides a range of addiction services such as:
- Individualized care
- Alcohol and drug detox
- Residential treatment
- Transitional living
- Individual therapy
Don’t let the effects of addiction continue to damage your family. Learn more about the connection between addiction and family during treatment. Reach out to us at 866-782-0247 to begin the healing process.