Dealing With Addiction
It is easier to find a list of "don’ts" in dealing with addicts for it is easier to understand why you fail than to know why you succeed.
The following list is not inclusive but it makes a good beginning:
Don't lecture, moralize, scold, blame, threaten, argue when drunk or sober, pour out liquor, lose your temper or cover up the consequences of drinking. You may feel better, but the situation will be worse.
Don't lose your temper and thereby destroy yourself and any possibility of help.
Don't allow your anxiety to compel you to do for addicts what they must do for themselves.
Don't accept promises, for this is just a method of postponing pain. In the same way don't keep switching agreements (If an agreement is made stick to it).
Don't allow the addict to lie to you and accept it for the truth, for in so doing you encourages this process. The truth is often painful, but get at it.
Don't let the addict outsmart you for this teaches them to avoid responsibility and lose respect for you at the same time.
Don't let the addict exploit you or take advantage of you for in so doing you become an accomplice in the evasion of responsibility.
Don't go along with the addict's "reasons." Addicts have many "reasons" why they drink or take drugs. These "reasons" are usually "excuses" rather than genuine problems. Remember that there is no valid reason for an addict to abuse. There are only excuses to make addiction appear reasonable to you and themselves,
Don't give the addict the impression that you are an enemy. Remember, the disease of addiction is the true enemy. Be firm in your commitment to recovery for a loved one, but let them know you're fighting this disease with them and not for them.
Don't put off facing the reality that addiction is a progressive illness that gets increasingly worse as drinking/drug usage continues. Start now to learn, to understand and to plan for recovery. To do nothing is the worst choice you can make.