The use of alcohol and drugs by a friend or family member can leave us with many unanswered questions, unable to understand what is happening and feeling like you are living on an emotional rollercoaster. You may find yourself struggling with a number of painful and conflicting emotions, including guilt, frustration, anger, fear and self-blame.
Like any other chronic disease, addiction to alcohol and other drugs affects people of all ages regardless of income, educational background, country of origin, ethnicity, sexuality, and/or community where they live. Anyone can become addicted to alcohol and drugs and anyone can be affected by another person’s addiction- especially friends and family members.
FACT*: A Gallup Poll found that 1 in 5 families (24%) had been touched by problems related to drinking.
For family and friends, you have seen and felt the negative effects and damage done by alcohol and drugs. In some ways, your awareness and understanding of the damage being done is far greater than the person who is actively drinking or using. As a start, there is no question that gaining a greater understanding of alcohol, drugs and addiction will help you to better handle the situation.
FACT*: According to a 2006 Gallup Poll, those who confronted their addicted family member were much more successful in getting him or her to admit the addiction (65%) than those who did not confront their relative (29%).
The primary goal of Crossroads’ The Effects of Addiction on Friends & Family 4-week Series is to learn how to step back from the emotional stress and impact of daily living with a person struggling with substance use. Participants will learn about the progression of this illness, the effects it has on loved ones, and how to make more effective decisions in managing their own lives.
For more information on this educational series, visit Crossroads’ website or call 207.773.9931
*Statistic from the National Council on Alcoholism and Drug Dependence, Inc.