Monday, July 09, 2007

Pain is inevitable suffering is optional

Addiction hurts. It hurts the addicted person and everyone close to the addict. BUT, how much the family members suffer as a result of the pain of addiction is something they can learn to have control over if they are willing to get help. How much of your life have you given up because of a loved one's addiction? How much time do you spend stewing, being anxious, afraid, frustrated and with thoughts of disaster pounding in your head?

It is important for family members to learn to reduce this suffering if they are to be able to live their lives and act in ways that can be helpful to the addicted person in their lives. In order to do that family members must get support. They should go to alanon meetings, open 12 step meetings, educational meetings, families anonymous meetings. Find out all you want to know about addiction on the internet, maybe more than you wanted to know.

Remember that your loved ones addiction is not your fault, and remember the 3 C's; You didn't Cause it, You can't Control it, and You can't Cure it. As with any chronic condition such as addiction, diabetes, or arthritis the person with the condition must take responsibility for the condition if they are to manage it successfully. Family members cannot manage another person's condition no matter how badly they want to or how clearly they think they seen the problem or the solution.

The addicted person needs to learn to manage their addiction and the family members need to learn to manage their response to the addicted person they care about.

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