5 Ways to help a friend in need (Guest Post)

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Not knowing what to do when someone you care about is struggling with drug addiction can leave you feeling isolated and helpless. One of the biggest issues in addressing drug abuse is that the person struggling with addiction needs to be ready and willing to address this issue themselves. So, what can you do if you are concerned that someone you care about has a drug problem? Here are 5 ways to help a friend in need:

    1. Listen to them if they want to talk. Talking through your problems can be a great way for some people to realize that their lives have gotten out of control, or that something is not right with what is going on. Talking through their problems may be enough for some to realize that they can no longer continue with things as they which could be the motivation they need to seek help to address their issues.
    2. Express your concern and offer help. Try not to be confrontational or accusatory in dealing with your concerns. Try to avoid saying things which might be seen as a being a criticism or accusation, such as suggesting that your friend is addicted to drugs. Rather, you could try and say that you are concerned about their health or their behavior. Try and avoid an angry confrontation and suggest things that you may think would help.
    3. Try and avoid lending your friend money. Giving someone with a drug or alcohol addiction the means by which they can continue their behavior can be characterized as, “enabling behavior.” Such behavior can potentially jeopardize your friendship and make your friend’s situation even worse. Practice tough love. Do not place the burden of responsibility on yourself, but rather place it where it lies; with the person using alcohol and drugs.
    4. If your friend is not ready to address their problems by seeking help for their addiction, try and persuade them to at least see a doctor in order to have a health check up. This may help to address any other health issues caused by their drug or alcohol use. In addition to this, speaking with their regular physician may be the first step in them addressing their drug or alcohol addiction. Also, the National Institute on Drug Abuse advises that, “You can always take steps to locate an appropriate physician or health professional, and leave the information with your friend.”
    5. If they are ready to start addressing their issues, then you can help your friend by assisting them in finding the right rehab help or treatment center for them. But how do you find the right place for them? One option is using a service like Drug Treatment Finders. By contacting one of their trained advocates you can tap into their knowledge and expertise about the services offered locally to you, allowing you to choose the service that is right for you. Drug Treatment Finders are there to help. Find out about them at www.drugtreatmentfinders.com.