Having a relationship with an addict is beyond tough. We hope that these 10 uplifting tips can help you find the answers you’re looking for.
The intricacies of love, dating, and relationships are complex enough. Add addiction into the mix and you’re in for the ride of your life. This is because addiction is not like any disease. It robs you not just of your loved one’s health–it robs you of that person that you used to love as well.
Addiction changes the person. This change also affects those who love them. When a person becomes an addict, it becomes hard for them to find joy and happiness in the things they used to do, in the people they used to like being around with. For them, the only goal to get through day to day, or to feel anything good, is to feed their addiction. It doesn’t matter who they hurt, even if they get themselves into trouble, as long as they feed the insatiable monster within.
If you’re in a relationship with an addict, here are some uplifting tips to help you get by and rise above.
10 Uplifting Tips to Survive a Relationship with an Addict
1. Be honest with yourself. Recognize addiction and how it impacts the person, you, and the relationship as a whole. The sooner you face the truth, the better. You can start healing, helping, and moving forward.
2. You can’t control them. Understand that addiction makes a person uncontrollably crave and have compulsions. It is a disease. Give up trying to control or change them. For change and recovery to really happen, the change must come from them.
3. Stop enabling. You’re not helping them when you don’t say “no” to them, when you enable them and treat them like they’re not the addict that they are or that there’s nothing wrong. It’s not love when you let them cave into their addiction. Sometimes, it’s tough love that helps them see that they have a problem.
4. Stop trying to fix things for them. You can’t fix them and you can’t keep on living trying to cushion them from the consequences of their actions and addiction.
5. Set boundaries. Boundaries are imperative even if you’re not dealing with addiction. In this case, it’s more important than ever. This allows you to keep that part of yourself from being stepped on and to also meet your own needs and keep your self-respect.
6. “Just this once” is not okay. Never reward their good behavior by letting them do it “just this once.” It’s their way of manipulating you. It’s never okay, because letting them engage in addiction even just once can quickly spiral out of control.
7. Get your own support system. Know that you can’t do it alone. Talk to people you trust, like close friends and family members. Knowing that you have someone to lean on in troubling times can make the burden lighter already. And if you need to, you may even talk to a professional.
8. Don’t forget yourself. Sometimes, you’re so engrossed in making your addicted loved one get better or be on the path to recovery that you spend all your time, money, effort, and emotions on them. This can leave you totally drained. Put yourself first and do things that you love, the things that uplift and empower you.
9. You can leave. It may be a difficult decision, but you don’t have to suffer alone. If the relationship is abusive and getting you down, you can leave. You have a choice.
10. Seek help for them. You can seek help for them. Centers such as Bridges of Hope here in the Philippines can arrange to have your loved one get treatment in one of our five facilities located in BF Homes in Paranaque, New Manila in Quezon City, Mandaue in Cebu, Lipa City in Batangas, and Angeles City in Pampanga.