Dependency upon alcohol and/or drugs is all too common a reality for many men and women. The addictions they face not only consume their own personal lives, but also consume those of their friends and family members.

Dealing with addiction with a family member can be extremely taxing, as it can be difficult to handle the situation while also caring for others in the family. Addiction can create tension and strained relationships within the family walls, especially if family members are at odds over what needs to be done.

If a family member is suffering from addiction, it is important to educate yourself on the proper strategies to helping them find a way out from under the suffocation of addiction.

Dealing With Addiction In The Family

Its a Disease

It can be hard for people to understand addiction. For those who have never experienced addiction, it can be difficult for them to see why their spouse, child, parent, or other family member cannot break away from the habit. Addiction is a disease, and unfortunately, the more a person uses drugs or alcohol, the more their body craves it. It can also affect a person’s ability to control whether they say yes or no, for the senses overtake the rational side of the brain. While there are ways to break free from addiction, it is not an easy habit to kick.


One of the best courses of action when it comes to addiction is finding help in a treatment center, like Balboa Horizons. Breaking free from addiction will be a trying process, mentally, physically, and emotionally—on both the addict and their family members. Seeking help from professionals can be one of the best ways to help an addict. They are trained and educated in dealing with addicts and everything else that comes along with addiction, including personality changes, emotional trauma, detoxing, sobriety, etc.

Most treatment centers also have family counseling and therapy, which can be helpful for families dealing with addiction. It can help bridge the gap between family members, as well as help family members learn what are helpful tactics and what tactics they should avoid.

Admitting the Problem

Many family members do want to admit that there is a problem, and that can lead to a division in the family, especially if family members are at odds over the issue. However, pretending like the problem does not exist is not helping anyone, especially the one dealing with addiction. It can be simple for parents to overlook the problem of a child, or for a spouse to pretend the problem does not exist in their partner.

Addictions do not go away, and ultimately, they only get worse if not addressed and treated. Ignoring the problem only hurts the addict worse, as they are only falling deeper and deeper into their addiction, making it more and more difficult for them to admit they need help.

Moreover, it can be challenging to get the addict to admit there is a problem. In many cases, they are just as adamant that nothing is wrong and family members can be, for admitting there is a problem means dealing with the problem and the aftermath.

Tough Love

One of the hardest parts of dealing with a family member’s addiction is figuring out how to treat them. It can be all too easy to help them out and try to help them avoid the consequences of their actions. However, it is important they understand they see the consequences of their actions. Many parents tend to take the blame of their child, trying to shield them from the consequences their addiction may have caused. Addicts need, though, to face the weight of their problems, otherwise they will never learn from their mistakes, and they will continue to grow more and more dependent on their addiction.


Addictions are expensive, and more often than not, addicts ask family members for money or take it without asking, leaving the family in financial stress. It is important to set boundaries, even if that means closing accounts or removing their name from the account.

While dealing with a family member’s addiction can be a tricky road to navigate, it is important for both the family’s well-being and the addict’s well-being to address and deal with the problem.

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