Emotions of the Addict vs. Family/Friend

From our experience, the inability of the addict to maintain functional relationships with others and manage their own feelings in a healthy way is the essence of addiction.

As a result of this, the addiction is transferred exponentially to the family, affecting on average a further four family members, changing existing relationships with a range of negative attitudes and emotions, which are shared with the addict and prevent recovery, to a greater or lesser extent, depending on the individual:

DENIAL:

Loved one – Our relative does not have a problem or it is temporary and under control.

DENIAL:

Addict – I can give up when I want. I don’t have a problem.

GUILT:

Loved one – What have we done to cause this or what can we do to solve the problem?

GUILT:

Addict – I am a failure; I am never successful in my attempts to quit…

SHAME:

Loved one – Lets hide the behaviour or addiction or that of our relative.

SHAME:

Addict – I am deceiving people who trust me. I can’t ask for help…

ANXIETY:

Loved one – What should I, or shouldn’t I do? And if…?

ANXIETY:

Addict – I have to do something else, use more, use less…

ISOLATION:

Loved one – I can’t tell anybody or count on anybody who will understand this and help us.

ISOLATION:

Addict – Nobody understands what is happening to me, not even I understand…

CODEPENDENCE:

Loved one – I can save them if I spend more time helping them.

CODEPENDENCE:

Addict – I can’t stop manipulating people to get what I want and need…

DESIRE FOR CONTROL:

Loved one – If I establish boundaries and limits, if I shout, if I am kind, if… I can change them.

DESIRE FOR CONTROL:

Addict – I just have to give up coke for a week. If she’ll come to the party with me I won’t get drunk.

HELPLESSNESS:

Loved one – I can’t change my relative affected by addiction or feel free of my feelings towards them.

HELPLESSNESS:

Addict – Nothing I do works, I can’t stop using…