Addiction has a powerful impact on the one struggling directly with it, family, friends, coworkers, neighbors, and more.
Sometimes it can take months or years for someone to realize there is an alcohol or drug dependence problem. Some of the signs an addict might show are personality changes, strange behaviors, new friends, missing hours days or even weeks, and changes in finances and attitudes towards money. The signs of addiction may be different from person to person, and the strength of these signals can also be different. By the time you discover what is truly going on, addiction has already taken hold.
One of the greatest impacts of addiction is that everyone nearby cannot help but feel pain. Isolated. Alone. Weighed down with a big secret. Unable to avoid or escape the pain and hopelessness of the struggle to help someone who may not be ready to accept help. Often, those who support the one who struggles with addiction, blame themselves for the addiction and the impact.
There has been tremendous progress addressing the stigma associated with seeking help for drug addiction. Despite this, families affected by addiction still feel alone. They still struggle to make sense of their new reality. They desperately try to find their place in the community, and to visualize how addiction will impact themselves both now and in the future.
If you are struggling with addiction, or someone in your inner circle is, know that you don't have to struggle alone. Reach out for help today.