How to Help a Loved One Struggling with a Meth Addiction
Addiction is a horrific disease that has the potential to ruin people’s lives no matter who they are or from where they come. Meth is especially dangerous because of its severe side effects and highly addictive nature. Meth also can lead to debilitating health problems as well as overdose and death. If you suspect that someone you care about may be addicted to meth, then keep reading for some advice on how to handle this difficult situation.
Learn to Recognize the Signs
Instead of coming right out and accusing someone of abusing a powerful drug, you want to make sure that you have some evidence to back up your claim. Observe your loved one and their belongings to see if you can spot some of the tell-tale signs of a meth addict.
Some behavioral signs you can look out for are mood swings, rapid personality changes, lying or secret keeping, insomnia, aggression, and excess weight loss. However, just because your loved one exhibits some of these behaviors does not immediately mean that they are abusing meth. These are simply things to keep in mind and evidence you can use when confronting them.
The signs of paraphernalia are a little more condemning if you think you may be dealing with a meth addict. However, to understand what to look for, you need to know how meth is abused. It can be crushed with the powder being snorted. It can be smoked through a glass pipe. It can be injected with a syringe, or it can be taken by mouth.
Therefore, if you find pipes, burned aluminum foil, burned spoons, syringes, or razor blades in your loved one’s possession, you have cause to be suspicious.
Listen and Gain Trust
Once you are nearly certain that your loved one has a problem that could be a meth addiction, you need to confront them. However, it is important not to take an accusatory tone or demand answers.
Broach the subject extremely carefully and allow them to do most of the talking if they are willing. They will not trust you unless you take the time to listen to them and hear things from their point of view. If they don’t want to talk at the current moment, then don’t force it. Let them know that you are there for them whenever they need you.
Act in Their Best Interest
People don’t like to do things solely because someone else thinks it’s right for them, even if it is the best thing for them. The same goes for seeking professional treatment. Once you have gained your loved one’s trust and have gotten them to open up, help them realize that seeking help is what they need and want.
This is tricky because they won’t respond to you just telling them what to do. They need to believe that you really want to help them and understand what is best for them before they will heed your advice.
Take Care of Yourself
Through this whole process of trying to improve your loved one’s health, do not forget about your own. Dealing with addiction is stressful, frustrating, and exhausting for everyone involved. Do the best you can to help those you care about, but you will be no benefit if you damage your mental or physical health in the process. Do not be afraid to ask others and professionals for help if your tactics are not yielding the expected results.
Finally, remember that addiction is a disease, and even if your loved one says mean or hurtful things, they likely do not mean it. However, at the same time, you don’t always have to stand there and take it if it becomes too much for you.