How to Help a Methadone Addict
As a loyal friend or family member, seeing your loved one struggle with methadone addiction can feel like a dagger through your heart.
Watching their condition deteriorate is extremely sad. You might feel concerned and fearful and angry all in one. However, there’s one thing you aren’t, and that is helpless.
Though it might feel like all you can do is watch the addict in your life spiral out of control, know that there is the potential to help them in their time of need.
With your assistance, your loved one can slowly climb out of their hole and get back into the life they once had.
Show That You’re There for Them
Chances are, drugs have created a barrier between you and your loved one. They may feel isolated and alone. It’s important to show you will be there for them during their recovery process.
Communicate and Listen
The best way to show support is to communicate with and listen to what your loved one has to say. It might be hard to talk at first, especially if they are afraid of disappointing you. However, listen to what they have to say without judging them.
Convince Them That Recovery Could Make Their Life Better
At first, your loved one might be a little resistant to treatment. They might be afraid of failure or afraid of what people will think of them.
Remind them that recovery is the only road to feeling normal and living an ordinary life again. Additionally, let them know that laws prevent doctors from sharing any aspects of their treatment, meaning no one has to know.
Help Them Get Treatment
Once they know they can rely on you, you’ll have to help them find the right treatment plan for their needs.
Do the Research for Them
Most likely, your loved one will need assistance finding someone to treat their addiction. The best place to start is to find an addiction physician. There are 3,500 to choose from in the United States, and you can call us at 800-891-9360(Who Answers?) to get information on which are the most knowledgeable.
Find the Perfect Center or Support Group
In addition to a physician, your loved one will also probably need a treatment facility or support group to attend. For example, refer them to Narcotics Anonymous groups in your area or use the Substance Abuse and Mental Health Services Administration treatment locator to find the closest options.
Create Incentives for Them
Unfortunately, not all addicts are cooperative. For the best results, wait until they aren’t high to talk with them about their options.
Give Them a Place to Stay
Giving your loved one a place to stay will allow them to have a safe and comfortable place to detox. It will also give you a chance to keep an eye on them so that they don’t relapse.
Offer Them a Financial Reward
In some cases, the incentive must be more persuasive. Money can often be a huge motivator – but it’s imperative to make sure they aren’t using it to buy more drugs. Offer them a financial reward for successfully completing treatment goals.
Don’t Let Them Control Your Life
At the end of the day, it’s hard to be there for someone addicted to methadone. It can take a huge toll on the mental and emotional aspects of your life. Even worse, some drug users can be manipulative in order to get what they want.
While it’s important to help them, it’s more important to keep your own health in mind. If you feel yourself getting dragged down, it might be time to step away for a few days.
When you’re ready, however, your continued support will eventually be the tipping point in your loved one’s battle.