Supporting Your Addict
Is a loved one or maybe even your spouse battling an addiction? Have you driven yourself crazy trying to “fix them” or the problem for months, maybe even years? Have you worked vigorously to keep up appearances in an attempt to hide the problem from others? Have all your attempts to “fix them” failed? Do you feel that you are somehow responsible for their addiction, and possibly even their relapses? Do you feel like you’re constantly living in a cycle of heartache and trauma? Do you also feel alone, exhausted and lost? Have you come to the end of yourself and realize that you need help too?
If this is you, I want you to know that I personally understand the deep anguish, trauma and loneliness that you are facing right now. The heartache caused by loving someone who is actively living in addiction can be one of the most difficult, lonely and heart wrenching experiences that a person can ever face. The good news is that you’re reading this blog and maybe for the first time you’re feeling understood. Maybe even feeling hopeful?
Did you know that the first of the twelve steps to recovery states, “We admitted we were powerless over (the addiction) -- that our lives had become unmanageable?” This can be the hardest step, especially for the loved one of an addict. At least it was for me. I didn’t realize that I too had a problem: In my attempts to “fix” and “love” the addicts in my life, I was slowly but surely sacrificing my own needs and desires in an effort to try and control them. I was essentially playing God - and failing horribly at it. Unfortunately, I didn’t realize that I had a problem until my life had completely unraveled.
Maybe you can relate to bits and pieces of my story? If so, there is hope! My life is a living testimony and example of God’s faithfulness and miracle-working power. It is a testimony of God mending the broken places in my life and restoring that which the enemy tried to steal from me. My heart is to encourage those of you reading this by reminding you that God knows fully what you are experiencing and His heart is grieved for you. God cares far more than you can ever even imagine. You see, God’s heart was never for us to have to experience the devastation and heartache connected to loving someone with an addiction. Yet, because we live in a fallen world, where sin exists, pain is inevitable. So, what do we do with this pain? How do we keep going, especially if those that we love aren’t willing to work through the recovery process?
God reveals in His word that He is aware of our heartache. It says in Psalm 38:9:
“All my longings lie open before you, Lord; my sighing is not hidden from you.”
He also says in His word that He can give us rest if we turn to Him, like in Matthew 11:28-30:
"Come to me, all who are weary and burdened, and I will give you rest. Take my yoke upon you and learn from me, for I am gentle and humble in heart, and you will find rest for your souls. For my yoke is easy and my burden is light."
These are just a few of many examples in the Bible where we can clearly see the tender heart of God towards us. God longs for you to cry out to Him in the midst of uncertainty and pain, and He promises to meet you right where you are at. Since the first step to recovery is admitting there is a problem, I would also encourage you to reach out to someone here at Life Focus Center. You aren’t meant to do this alone. Every Pastoral Counselor here at Life Focus Center has their own beautiful testimony of God’s faithfulness in their lives, and would love to help walk along side of you during this difficult season of life.
“You have turned for me my mourning into dancing; you have loosed my sackcloth and clothed me with gladness.” Psalm 30:11