How to Help a Loved One Get Addiction Treatment

Drug and alcohol addictions cause havoc in the lives of people who are addicted and in the lives of those who love them. If your loved one is addicted — or if you suspect they may be — how can you help them get the treatment they need? And how can you pay for treatment? 

Fortunately, rehab’s no longer just for the rich and famous.

Wasatch Recovery Treatment Center is a nonprofit foundation that helps women, men, and families who are financially disadvantaged receive addiction treatment in our residential or outpatient programs. 

Our caring counselors help your loved one, no matter what your circumstances. We offer discounts and scholarships. 

The next step is learning how to approach your loved one about getting addiction treatment. Here’s what you need to know.

Addiction changes the addict

An addiction to drugs or alcohol is part of a substance use disorder. Addiction rewires the addict’s brain, creating uncontrollable cravings as well as the inability to stop using the preferred substance. 

Substance abuse also includes a dependency aspect. Dependency creates physical withdrawal symptoms when the substance is taken away. The physical pain of withdrawing from the substance is one of the biggest hurdles to stopping its use.

As the neurons in the addict’s brain recircuit themselves to receive more of the substance, you’re up against a formidable foe, as is your loved one. We understand how addiction can affect your loved one’s behavior, but try to divorce these behaviors from the person you know and love. 

An addict isn’t in their right (or own) mind. Your first step in approaching your loved one is to understand that they’re in the clutches of a disease that they have no control over.

Support yourself with research

When you approach your loved one about their addiction, their first reaction is usually denial. Arm yourself ahead of time by researching addiction and its effective treatments. 

Your loved one will probably try to argue that they don’t need treatment. Or that they can’t get it. Or afford it. By educating yourself on the signs of addiction as well as affordable, convenient treatment options, you can address each objection as it's raised.

For example, the early treatment stages of addiction are intensive. Your loved one may claim that they can’t afford the time it takes to address the problem. You can respond with the many ways that they can continue to lead their life, perhaps through our outpatient detox program. 

By anticipating their responses ahead of time and telling them that help is but one step away, you can help them see the path to sobriety more clearly. The first step for the addict is the hardest, which is why your guidance is crucial.

Tell them how you feel

Blaming the addict for their behavior is counterproductive. They may not realize that they have a problem or that their addiction affects anyone but themselves.

Before they can change, they must want to change. Your role is to show them why they should want to. 

When you explain how their addiction affects your life — and the lives of others — try an approach of concern rather than accusation. Speak in terms of “I” (I feel that ..., this makes me feel ..., etc.) and not “you.” 

Feel free to be firm in stating that their problem is wreaking havoc on the lives of those around them. But don’t blame them or try to make them feel guilty. They probably already feel guilty enough. Disgust and self-loathing are often at the root of addiction.

Reach out

Don’t try to help your loved one without first getting support and help yourself. Our counselors are happy to guide you through getting your loved one the care they need. Our goal is the same as yours, and together we can rediscover the vital, wonderful person that lies just below the addiction.

Our programs aren’t a one-fix solution, either. Once your loved one breaks their physical addiction, we also offer long-term support to help them face the world again as they rebuild their life.

To get addiction help for your loved one, contact us at the Wasatch Recovery Treatment Center today. We have a residential location in Cottonwood Heights, Utah, and an outpatient and sober living facility in East Sandy, Utah.

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