If you live with an addict, you know that addiction impacts people other the person afflicted with it. While accidents and criminal activity have well-known links to addiction, the effects of addiction at home are talked about less. Understanding the most difficult parts of living with an addict will clarify the broad value of recovery.
Addiction is notorious for causing mood swings, including anger and aggression. While some substances can directly cause aggressive behavior, other substances can cause aggression during abstinence. If you live with an addict, you may be attacked physically or emotionally on a regular basis. Even if it has not yet happened, you might see signs of aggression that make you wonder when it will occur. At the very least, this can force you to walk on eggshells as you try not to set off the addict when he or she is under the influence or withdrawing.
Addiction commonly causes relationships to become less important to those in its grip. With a flow of pleasure and comfort coming from a substance, the addict is less likely to value time with loved ones and reciprocate in relationships. This can destroy your relationship over time, whether the addict is a significant other, parent or child. For the addict, this can result in even greater dependence on a substance as their support system dissolves. You may become depressed over time as you repeatedly try to save your relationship only to be rejected in favor of an addictive substance. Have you tried an intervention and it didn’t work?
Addiction can present many risks to the addict, including financial problems, arrest, health problems and even death. If you live with an addict, you may become preoccupied with all the problems that their addiction might bring. Even if the addict does not completely ignore the risks, your concerns about the situation may be rejected. This can easily cause you to experience stress, anxiety and depression.
Although addiction can change a person for the worse, these changes are not necessarily permanent. In fact, recovering addicts are commonly disturbed at the pain they have caused friends and family because of their addiction. For the best chances of long-term recovery, addicts should enter inpatient rehab, which offers professional supervision, counseling and ongoing support.