Most often, the question comes from family. Sometimes it’s from friends or from a boss. But it’s essentially the same:
Someone we care about has a problem with drugs and/or alcohol. How can we get help? How do we start?
The question is a little more complicated than it seems, primarily because the substance user may or may not see the problem; they may or may not be ready to change. And these options aren’t necessarily two clear choices.
In reality, they likely exist in a continuum for the addict/alcoholic. They may be ready today, but not tomorrow. They may be progressing toward one of the two options. It’s often a fluid situation and can be messy to navigate.
Let’s assume we’re working with someone who’s ready to change. They’re tired of the dependence, physical pain, emotional misery and everything else that goes with substance abuse. They’ve given up, surrendered. Maybe this sounds crazy, but that’s a great place to be. It means they recognize that their way isn’t working and they’re willing to take direction from someone who has a better path.
So we start at the beginning by assessing the situation to see what’s required:
- Do they need detoxification (detox) services to safely stop? There can be serious health considerations in making this decision.
- Do they need treatment? Inpatient? Residential? Outpatient?
- What about sober living? Can they benefit from living in a supportive community of others who are also early in recovery?
- How about support groups? Recovery Navigators believes it’s critical for addicts and alcoholics to participate in these groups. The support of people with the same substance abuse problem has been proven to be crucial in sustaining sobriety.
- Which group is right for them? There are many options and no single path is right for everyone?
This list of choices can be like the branches of a tree – one choice leads to multiple others – so you can see the value of having help in creating and navigating a customized path.
Want more information about creating the right map? Let’s talk.