4 Ways to Deal with a Parent who has Addiction Problems
If one of your parents is addicted to drugs, alcohol, or anything else, know that you’re not alone. We understand what you are going through and we will try to help you as best we can so that you can deal with this in the most effective way. When a person is abusing different substances it can have a major effect on them.
A lot of the substances that people get addicted to instantly change the way that person perceives the world and reacts to their surroundings. Apart from the changes by the initial effects of a substance, they can also change the way a person behaves, even if they aren’t on anything.
This is why it’s not easy to live with an addict, especially if that addict is your parent and you have other things to deal with as a teen. Getting through this isn’t easy but we can give you advice that could help you deal with everything that is happening.
Find a Person You Can Talk To
During this difficult period, you need to rely on your friends and other loved ones that you can open up to and talk to them about everything that is going on. In these situations, there is nothing worse than holding on to your feelings and bottling them inside. They become a huge burden on you and make your life seem miserable.
When you hold everything inside, you will start obsessing about the problem you are having and this is not a way to overcome it. Instead, you will dwell on it and your life will completely revolve around your parent’s addiction. This is why you need to talk to someone who you trust.
Try talking about the situation with your best friend, their parents, other family members, a school therapist, teacher, or siblings, so that you can get everything out. Not only will sharing give you that emotional relief, but these people might also give you valuable advice and help.
A lot of kids look at the whole thing from their perspective and get the feeling that it’s their fault that all these things are happening. In a lot of cases, this is because their parents blamed them, but many adults like to blame others for their addiction and their mistakes, so try not to take it too seriously if this has happened to you as well.
Of course, this can be very hurtful but it still doesn’t mean that it’s true. Kids can never be responsible for their parent’s substance abuse and you should remember that. This is why you need to forgive yourself and accept the fact that you haven’t done anything.
At the same time, don’t judge yourself for not being strong enough, having emotional breakdowns, or crying. All kids whose parents are addicts go through the same thing and there is nothing that could have prepared you for this. Forgiving yourself is essential for dealing with this kind of problem.
Spend as Much Time as Possible out Doing What You Love
Just because your parent has become an addict doesn’t mean that you should follow their path or spend your time looking at him or her wasting their life away. In fact, it’s actually better to do the opposite. Try to spend as much time as possible with your friends, in training, learning, on courses, and so on.
Not only will working on yourself help you in the future, but you will also be able to forget about what is happening at home and get into that “normal” daily flow that all the other kids enjoy. Getting your mind off stressful things is important, especially in these kinds of situations and you should take any chance to do so.
This will give you that positive boost you need in life and that you never have at home. Furthermore, you can establish new relationships with other people and tell them about your problems. As a result, they might be able to offer you some additional help to make it easier to deal with the situation.
Be Prepared for Any Situation
A lot of families are devastated with substance addiction and this is why there are also a lot of support groups for these kinds of situations. Ask around or google about similar support groups in your area.
When you join a similar group, you will be able to get a lot of useful information on how to behave, protect yourself, and meet people that have been through similar situations.
Additionally, most support groups have a hotline that is available 24/7 so that you can call them whenever you need someone to talk to or when you are in some kind of trouble. When things get worse, it’s always a good idea to have a safe space where you can go.
No matter if you need to spend a night somewhere or simply get away from danger, it’s important to have options that you can turn to instantly. You never know what might happen and during those difficult moments, you won’t have time to think, you need to know what to do and where to go.
If possible, make sure to speak to a professional who helps people deal with situations you are currently in. Educated people can always give you more insight and help you recover from all the terrible situations you’ve been through. You can’t let the addiction of your parents ruin your life as well.