Addiction can affect anyone, and it hits hardest when it is a member of your family, such as a grandchild. This issue can tear apart bonds and burden the heart, so taking steps to help is wise. The following are four ways you can help a grandchild with addiction.
Perhaps one of the most important steps to take is to simply show this person a little tough love. Addiction is not easy to deal with and could lead someone to act irresponsibly. Many people would take this to mean to cut them out of your life, draw a line on the sand, or to spy on them. However, sometimes the tough part of tough love is that it’s tough on us to love them. Addiction is a disease, we wouldn’t cut them out of our life if they had say heart disease and still ate chips and soda. They won’t get better till they want to. To do so they need a support system. We will do them a disservice if we take away the support system. Many times we have to fight for them so they can learn to fight for themselves. We need to show love and empathy so they can do it for themselves. How hard would it be to overcome something with your loved ones not thinking you can?
Once your loved one has admitted to having an addiction, it might be a good idea to facilitate his or her rise from this addiction. The only way you are going to do this is by recognizing that he or she will need some help. What you want to do is guide your loved one to facilities where he or she can get the professional support they need right now.
To do this, they have to admit having an addiction and needing help. This can often be one of the most cumbersome parts. If you have a mutual friend, family member or someone who’s come out of the other side of addiction, they lend some guidance. One should be careful to not sound like your love is dependent of their change. This can backfire. Finding this understanding from someone who has dealt with addiction can bring the empathy needed to understand this isn’t just a matter of will, but a sickness to be overcome.
Now that your loved one has gone through a drug program, you can begin to offer other types of support. You can try to help him or her continue his or her education, get a job, or anything that will give your grandchild a sense of purpose. Finding a sense of purpose is an important step towards self-reliance, which is vital at the moment.
As much as you might not want to believe that relapse is a possibility, it is. This happens to anyone at any given time, and you need to be prepared for it. Relapses can occur for all sorts of reasons, from a traumatic event to simple stresses of life. You might not even see it coming, and one day you get a call from your grandchild telling you he or she is in jail. In this particular case, you are going to need the number of a good bail bondsman to help get your loved one out, but you should also have the number of your grandchild’s sponsor just in case.
Hopefully, some of these points help you stay on top of what your grandchild is going through. It is not going to be easy, but your loved one’s well-being is well worth the effort.