The harmful effects of drug abuse go beyond just the individual, they effect one’s friends and family too… and that is further reason to stop
Drugs cause so much harm, not only to the person that is doing them but to those around them.
A lot of times, the person doing the drugs does not realize that they are hurting those that are close to them. They might not realize a lot of what is going on around them because they are more worried about getting their fix. Drugs can destroy people, but by realizing their path of destruction, the person may have an easier time being able to overcome their addiction and fight for those that they love.
Here are some of the ways drugs can impact your life:
Loss of Relationships
Those that do drugs are more likely to lose relationships because of the drugs they are doing. This is because they have to work to tend to them.
Relationships are like flowers in a garden. If the flowers do not get sunlight and water, they are going to wither and die.
The same goes for relationships. Those that are not tended too will fade away.
Those that are dealing with addiction are prone to shut out anyone that mentions the addiction to them. They may also start to become angry and mean towards them or push them away without realizing they are doing so. The addiction and substance become more important to them, even more important than the relationships.
Changes in Family and Friend Dynamics
The dynamics of a family are simple for many people. The parents take care of the children, and so on. When someone has an addiction, the dynamics might switch, making things harder on everyone and putting everyone in danger. If the parents have the addiction, the kids may have to take care of the parents, and even their siblings. This puts them in a caregiving role, which oftentimes hurts or burdens their lives.
This is usually something that can damage the children of the family more than anyone else. The older siblings generally have to fend for themselves and for their younger siblings to ensure that they are able to survive. They are usually the ones that have poor hygiene and eating habits, paying little or no attention to self-care.
Emotional Issues and Grief
There are many different emotional issues that can stem from addiction and drug abuse, such as depression, anger, paranoia, anxiety, and a host of other conditions.
Usually, when a person is dealing with these types of issues, the rest of the family is also dealing with the same ones.
This can cause profound emotional turmoil for everyone, especially the family as a unit.
They may be feeling emotions that are different from one another, but when one person is dealing with an addiction, the rest of the family has to deal with it as well. This is where many families find themselves having the hardest time. Those that are not addicted may not want to deal with the emotional parts of dealing with an addicted family member, and instead want to walk away.
Learn How to Cope with Stress in Healthy Ways
In many cases, the person that is dealing with the addiction turns to it in the beginning because they are looking for a way to get out of stressful situations. But there are other ways to reduce the amount of stress you are feeling without turning to this addiction. Some approaches are listed below:
- Meeting with someone to speak about how you feel
- Prescription medications
- Reducing the amount of responsibility you have
- Journaling how you feel on a regular basis
- Eating healthy, well-balanced meals
- Drinking plenty of water
- Taking a break when you need one
- More exercise
How to Avoid Relapses
Relapses happen. However, if you want to skip the relapse there are so many things you can do to help yourself avoid turning back to the drugs. These are some healthy ways for dealing with stress and avoiding relapses:
- Know how the drugs adversely impacted your life and the lives of those around you
- Think about the things in your life that make you happy and why you may want to stay clean, such as your parents, your kids, your spouse, your dog – and of course, yourself
- Think about how hard it was to quit in the first place and how far you have come already
- Tell friends and family you’re struggling and reach out for help
- Attend regular meetings and speak with a counselor, or find someone to sponsor you so you know where to turn for help
- Remove any reminders of the addiction so you never look back again
- Consider sober living homes to stay clean or find help where you need it
- Know you are not alone in this
There are so many reasons for someone to stay clean and sober. Being able to take care of yourself is one reason, but when your addiction is bringing other people down, especially people close to you, then you need to find a way to walk away from the addiction.
We all deserve to be free from the shackles of addiction, so please find the help wherever works for you and feel good about yourself when you do. Everyone can find the help they need to overcome addiction; you just have to be willing to shift and ready to take a step forward.
Are you ready?
You may also enjoy Life After Addiction: How Mindfulness Improved My Way of Life by Cassidy Webb