What to do when your addicted partner won’t seek help

By: Jan Rakoff

If you are in a relationship where your mate is abusing alcohol and/or drugs and will not seek help, you may feel that your own life is out of control and hopeless.

Maybe you have tried everything to convince your partner about the detrimental effects on yourself and your relationship and family without success.

Because of the nature of addiction, it is very difficult for someone who is actively addicted to alcohol or drugs to fully understand the impact of their using not only on others but also on themselves.

The truth is, you cannot control your mate’s addiction.

But there is good news: You do not have to wait for your mate to get help for addictive behaviors to begin to seek help for yourself.

Here are some ways that you can begin to take charge of the things you can control in your life:

1. Are you safe? Is your partner’s chemical usage putting you (and if a parent, your children) in a risky situation? If so, you may want to talk to people close to you to figure out what you need to do to get safe ASAP.

2. Seek out a 12 step support group for friends and loved ones of people who are dealing with addiction. This might be Al-Anon or Nar-Anon. You can attend meetings in your local area or possibly even find meetings online. Talking to people who are walking the same path can help you sharpen your thinking and make wise decisions about your life.

3. Reach out for help. Consider seeking supportive therapy to help you get the guidance you need to move forward. Ventilate your feelings, talk over strategies for your next step in life, and get the support you need to intervene in a healthy way in your mate’s life if doing so seems feasible.

I welcome your call for help and support if you are dealing with a mate’s substance abuse. Give me a call at 858-481-0425 for free 15 min. telephone consult or to schedule an appointment. I am here to help.

Copyright ©2012 Jan Rakoff. All Rights Reserved.

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