Talking with Dad About His Addiction
Don’t Let it Become This
As Father’s Day approaches, it’s time to focus more on Dad. You may have wanted to bring up his drug or alcohol addiction in conversation, but for some reason, hadn’t. You know your dad is hurting himself. Don’t put it off any longer.
Here are six tips on how to talk with your dad about his addiction:
1. Choose the right moment.
Approach your dad when he’s sober. Though your confrontation will be out of love, an argument may ensue, and arguing with a drunk person can get ugly. It can also be dangerous. He may be your dad, but if he’s drunk, he won’t be in the right frame of mind. Also, alcoholics and drug addicts are known to instigate fights to take the attention away from their substance abuse.
2. Speak from a loving place.
You may be mad, upset and frustrated with your dad. But when you talk to him about his addiction, use kind words. Don’t make him feel any worse about his behavior or for causing you pain. If you do, he may drink or do drugs to cope with guilt.
3. Be honest.
Don’t lie to your dad. Tell him exactly how his addiction is making you and the rest of the family feel. You can’t help him if you hold your feelings back.
4. Offer support.
Let your dad know that you and the family are on his side. The only opposing force is the disease of addiction. As with any disease, there is a battle, and it helps to know who’s in your army.
5. Don’t make it about you.
Don’t push for an alcoholic or drug addict to enter rehab because you want him or her to. Telling your dad, “If you really loved me, you would stop” won’t work. This isn’t about you or how much your dad loves you. It’s about your dad. He has to want to get sober or clean for himself.
6. Don’t hesitate to call for help.
If emotions are overwhelming and you start the conversation when your dad isn’t sober, don’t be afraid to call the police if it gets out of hand. You don’t want to sacrifice your or the family’s safety. Also, if you make that phone call, you may prevent your father from harming himself.
Bringing up the subject of addiction to an addicted family member is tough. But when you care about someone, you want to do whatever it takes to help them. If you talk with your dad about his drug or alcohol addiction, it just may be the best Father’s Day gift you can give.
Getting into drug and alcohol rehab at Lakeview is easy. Our admission coordinators are available 24/7 to take your questions about treatment. Call 866.704.7692 today.