It is common knowledge that the most important step in the addiction recovery process is not in fact checking into residential rehab for alcoholics but acknowledging you have a real problem in the first place. Speak to any person that has ever recovered from an alcohol addiction and they will tell you how very true this is. It is really not until you find yourself in the middle of such a problem that you start gaining an understanding of how tricky it could be to face the reality of things. You do not want to acknowledge the issue to yourself, you don’t want to deal with the consequences of alcohol addiction and you really do not want to admit it to your family and friends.
It is completely natural to assume that by bringing your addiction problems out in the open, you’ll place unfair and excessive pressure on your loved ones. That you’ll become a big burden – a person they constantly worry about, are embarrassed by, disappointed in and so on. This is exactly why it’s quite natural for alcohol addicts to remain in denial for a long time, although it is only by bringing things out into the open that the recovery process can begin.
Which is, after all, really the only thing that matters to anyone who cares about you.
Here is a short overview of just a few tips from the professionals on how to acknowledge your addiction, come clean to your family and friends and generally start discussing the best possible way forward.
- First up, it is worth bearing in mind that long before you actually discuss the matter with your family and friends, you can always seek the assistance and advice of a professional therapist. Chances are you’ll be filled with so many terrifying and conflicting feelings that you’ll have no idea what to say, how to express it and what reactions to expect. This could make it a seemingly impossible roadblock to overcome, but by talking to the experts you may find it much simpler to approach.
- Also crucially important before beginning is being aware precisely what you intend to do about your issues. It is not simply a case of saying “This is my issue, no please fix it.” This is the point where the difference lies between seeking help and burdening others. From rehab to detox to therapy to self-help and so on, ensure you know what your plan to do before bringing the subject up.
- There is a strong chance that with so many emotions running as high as they will be, you’ll most likely forget about 99% of what you intended to say. Instead, you will end up making things up as you go which might not be as productive and proactive as you have liked. Therefore, think about writing down a few reminders and key points, in order to bring them with you and express them all appropriately.
- When it comes to reactions, considering the fact that it is something none of you had to deal with before, it’s basically impossible to accurately tell what to expect. Therefore, it is a good idea to be well prepared for anything. It could be that they were in a way expecting it and it all comes as zero surprise to them. It could be that they did not see it coming at all and hence it comes as the most significant shock to their system. Or it could be that they have been waiting for a long time for you to acknowledge your problem and have become quite frustrated. Whatever the reaction, it’s simply a case of emotions taking precedence over logic for some time and need not be taken too seriously.
- Last up, if you think it is going to be a quick chat and all will be sorted, you can simply forget about it. You must take your time and give it all a much attention and time as it needs. The meeting you schedule will most likely turn into something of an on-going meeting, which filters into the everyday. It is not as if you could expect your close ones to simply say “OK, no worries” and things to go back to normal after you are done talking. Quite to the contrary, it will have a huge impact on all that happens from thereon in, but you have to remember that it is all geared towards a positive outcome. So even if it happens to be rather unpleasant at the time…which it might…it is still a step in the positive direction.