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Thursday, December 9, 2010

Addicts have tools of the trade

Blame: Who is responsible? Not me!Image via Wikipedia
If you live with or are exposed to an addict then you no doubt know that they have a huge arsenal of tools at their disposal that help them deal with you. Guilt may be up in the top five, if not number one on their list. Understand, an addict can rarely accept responsibility for their addiction, so blame and guilt are used twofold, to alleviate their personal responsibility, and to acquire help from you. There are some addicts  that have deep seated pain, guilt and often times unresolved issues that they have tried to numb with the drugs they use. Many, many times, there is abuse during early childhood involved. Family members need to understand that just because they have no recollection of any problems in an addicts past, doesn’t mean they didn’t happen.  Children can keep secrets for years.
Part of understanding what went wrong with an addicted friend or loved one is finding the core issue that is hidden. This can be difficult  as so many have buried the past so deeply within. Sometimes the addict has no known reason. Getting to the root cause is harder for these individuals, because you don’t have their pain to work from necessarily. Some become addicted simply out of a bad decision to “try” a drug. If they are alcoholics, or addicted to other things, ie: food, sex, etc.  Their addictive personalities can be all that was needed to turn the “curiosity” into addiction. Addictive personalities to not have the ability to “refuse” addictive substances.
Now that you have an idea of what tools an addict has to deal with you, it is time for you to figure out what tools you need to deal with the addict. First on the list is understanding there more than likely is a cause from the past that has generated into this addiction, and secondly is to become educated on the particular addiction you are dealing with. Third, waste no time getting help. Immediately.
The focus on treatment needs to take center stage. The time of letting the manipulation of guilt, blame and shame is over. These tools have kept the addict addicted, and possibly you addicted to their problems.  Ironing out fault, blame and problems will come, but you have to deal with a clean mind to make it happen. Do not allow the addict to use their pain to hurt your efforts any more. Acknowledge their pain, but do not allow yourself to dwell on it, if you see that they are using this as a tool of their trade to keep addicted. Healing will come when they are again sober, and you can work on the core issues. Time is of the essence. Time is running out.
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