For loved ones suffering alongside someone struggling with addiction, it can be challenging to find guidance and support. A person suffering from addiction often times will become an expert at lying and they learn to turn the tables on someone trying to offer help. Loved ones need to understand that drug abuse comes with a moral and ethical decay. The craving for more drugs or alcohol can be so overwhelming that the user may feel crazy.
It is not uncommon for families of addicts to fall into a deceptive pattern as well, trying to cover up the addict’s behavior and fix the damages they have caused. It is important in family recovery that the loved ones understand they are responsible for how they react to the addict’s behavior.
For family and loved ones, manipulation may be extremely difficult to identify. Family and friends want to believe what the addict is telling us. Recognizing manipulation in addiction can be difficult for an addicts loved ones, but there are ways to identify and stop manipulation.
It can take many years before family members are able to see the steps that comprise the game that an addict plays to get what they want. By learning their part in the process, family can learn to stop playing and force the addict to confront their behavior causes.
Often times manipulation involves guilt, complaining, comparing, lying, denying, blame, bribery, feigning ignorance, undermining, assumptions, mind games, emotional blackmail, evasiveness, fake concern, apologies, sympathy, or flattery.
The first step in handling manipulation is to recognize that you are in fact dealing with it. Manipulators know what triggers the people around them. Gain an understanding for their tactics and learn their methods for manipulation. Building your self-esteem, becoming assertive and setting boundaries are good ways to begin facing manipulation head on.
Finding a support system is also extremely important for families of addicts when it comes to coping with manipulation and addiction. At A New Start, Inc., we offer a family program that provides patient’s families with the support that they need while the patient is seeking treatment. We believe that addiction is a family disease and we focus treatment and support on the entire family. For more information about our intensive outpatient program, please contact us today at 1.844.TALK.ANS.