Wednesday, November 21, 2007

Right for Love?

Success in love is much more than finding the right person; it is a matter of being the right person.
- Unknown

Addiction in the Family

We recently received a second call from the young woman dealing with drug and alcohol addiction. She said she was doing better but she also had ongoing concerns about repairing damaged relationships.

We wanted to provide some brief ideas to help her, and anyone else, cope with addiction and the effects on families.

Understanding these effects can help you make better choices.

Even loving parents often let go of their addicted child at some point, after years or decades. They might stop asking about your life because they are afraid of being given more to worry about.

They refused to give you money or a place to stay because you have abused their love and kindness in the past. You have given them many reasons not to trust you; a proven track record of distrust.

Addiction can make good people turn to lying and stealing from family members. Family members separate from you as a way to maintain their own emotional health.

Don’t let anger and frustration derail your efforts at recovery.

Accept that it will take time for them to even begin to trust you again. Focus on getting your life back on track rather than proving to them that you are trying.

That means your recovery has to be the priority in your life, even when no one is watching you.

The bitter reality is that an addict can spend years complaining to the family about how difficult recovery is so they don’t have to really dig in and do it.

We can’t blame others when they become fatigued while dealing with our distorted lives. We all have a limit to our endurance, even Mom and Dad.

Of course this is oversimplifying the process. Many pieces of the puzzle need to be in place to maintain a healthy recovery plan.

We need to recognize that life can always get better but we must make an effort to get there. The first piece is deciding to be responsible for your life and what happens to you from this day forward.

Ask for what you need; people want to help.

Live Well.

Saturday, November 10, 2007

Life or Death?

Do or do not! There is no try!
- Master Yoda

These following brief comments are related to a recent conversation with someone who is not a client of Insight Associates. She said she was addicted to drugs and alcohol and other behaviors as well.

She was most concerned with her damaged relationship with her family including her parents, siblings, and her own children. Her treatment history included stays at drug rehab facilities and occasional efforts at maintaining a counseling relationship.

When pressed for my opinion about her need to return to inpatient rehab, I said that it was a good idea, but another question was even more important. Are you ready to take charge of your life?

This is a simple question that many of us can make overly complex with ifs, ands, or buts. Our fear of change, and unavoidable consequences, help to keep us locked-in to unhealthy beliefs and behaviors.

For this young woman, the answer was tantamount to deciding if she would rather live or die. We hope she makes the healthy choice.

We all have the ability to begin anew by answering the question, "Am I ready to take responsibility for the course of my life?" The only good choice is also the most obvious one.

Live Well. Now.