Coping With a Loved One’s Addiction Over the Holidays – You Can Get Through It
Coping with a loved one’s addiction is never easy, but for many, the holidays are an even tougher time than usual to have to be dealing with this situation. Unfortunately, addiction is not an easy thing to deal with. Your loved one might feel like he is isolated and nobody understands him. He probably feels like all he does is disappoint you, and chances are, he doesn’t want to be around you and all the rest of your family.
However, since it is the Holiday Season, there is usually some sense of obligation, as well as the possibility of gifts, so your loved one will likely be around. Not only that, but despite the addiction, your loved one still wants the warmth of family. Nothing brings around the desire for closeness like upcoming festivities.
So, while you’re working on coping with a loved one’s addiction over the holiday, it’s important to remember that your loved one is struggling to cope, too.
When it Comes to Loved Ones Who Aren’t So Close to the Situation
Part of the reason that so many people have such a hard time with their loved one’s addiction during this time is that many friends and family members come into town. This brings about discomfort and lots of heartaches. Ask anyone who has been dealing with a loved one’s alcohol or substance abuse problem for any amount of time if they’ve experienced the falling apart of big events because of their loved one’s situation, and they’ve probably got at least one story to share.
Chances are, your extended family knows of your loved one’s situation. They probably know that you have a loved one that struggles with alcohol or substance abuse. They probably even know the toll that it’s taken on you. However, even when you’ve come to a different place when it comes to your loved one, they might not have gotten to that different place.
While you don’t want to exclude your loved one just because of his addiction, you also don’t want to tell family members that they can’t come to visit you. It’s highly stressful, really, and when you’re in the middle of it, it can be even more daunting.
Tips to Help Make Coping with a Loved One’s Addiction Easier
You’re always going to need help in this area, but when you’ll probably need even more help is during the Holiday Season. These tips can make some of the worst challenges to juggling all the different personalities and your addicted loved one a little bit easier.
- First and foremost, decide for you what you want from your Holiday Season. When we have a loved one that struggles with an addiction, it can be really easy to feel like everything revolves around him or her. The first thing you need to do for you and the rest of your loved ones is to resolve to take your life back, and that begins with deciding what you want from the season, and the things you want to do. Then, make it a point to make it happen. The joy you give yourself and the good memories you make with the rest of your friends and family members might just be enough to sustain you when times get tough.
- Understand that your addicted loved one has his own life, and doesn’t have to be involved in all you do. Your addicted loved one has his own life. There are many times that it doesn’t involve you, so you don’t have to involve him in all you do. In fact, sometimes, making sure that he’s involved can only cause more strife and conflict. Instead, take some time to do your own thing and enjoy yourself without having to worry about the ups and downs that addiction can create.
- Know which family members are more understanding than others. This makes a tremendous
difference for everyone involved, because you might find that encouraging shorter, more separate gatherings for the loved ones that are not so understanding of your loved one’s situation can help to prevent a lot of heartache on your end. Believe it or not, splitting festivities up can ensure that you’re all having a good time and that your addicted loved one doesn’t have to listen to being grilled or worry about being looked at or judged.
- Set a few rules. While rules often seem like they aren’t much fun, they can make a world of difference when it comes to your sanity and your heart. Maybe you want to call them guidelines, or boundaries, but sit down and talk to your loved one about them. It might be something like asking your loved not to use or drink in your home. Or, maybe it’s that he be engaged when he comes to festivities. You know what your loved one is struggling with, and he knows that you want certain things for your Holidays, talk about it so there are no hurt feelings or negativity when he chooses to take his leave.
- Don’t get your feelings hurt when your loved one doesn’t show up. Yes, you want your loved one to be with you during these times, but if he chooses not to come, don’t be hurt. Try to understand where he is with his situation and just let him be. You don’t have to chase him, just let him know he’s welcome and enjoy your time.
It’s Not Going to be Perfect, But it Can Help
While these tips can help you, they won’t make everything perfect. No Holiday Season, no matter how well planned, or how healthy, will ever be perfect, but when you apply some of these tips, you might just find that managing any special event and including your addicted loved one can be done, and you can enjoy it.
When you and your loved one do decide that it’s time for him to seek treatment, give us a call. At Elite Rehab Placement, we know that addiction treatment is about more than finding a rehab. It’s about locating a place where treatment really makes sense. It’s about making a fresh start and having your loved one get the treatment that he deserves and really needs to live a new life.
We can help you and your loved one find addiction treatment that makes sense for him, and we can help both of you enjoy peace of mind by making sense of your insurance coverage and what you’ll wind up paying out of pocket for you.
Then, we help make the rehab selection process easier because our treatment specialists walk you through the big stuff, like options, your needs, and what’s going to be helpful for your loved one and his recovery journey.
Coping with a loved one’s addiction over the Holidays is never easy, but you can do it, and when you’re ready, we can help make finding a great rehab easier, too. If your loved one is ready, give us a call today, but if not, we’re here when you’re ready.