When your loved one with an addiction problem comes to you spewing fear, hate, drama, or whatever the latest chaos might be, just say “I don’t know.”
“I don’t know” is one of the greatest things to say to an addict trying to manipulate you.
I use it all the time.
“I don’t know, let’s think about this for a minute.”
It gives you a break so that you don’t get drawn into their chaos. Stay level-headed. Don’t give into the unrealistic fear that they are experiencing. Remember that they are emotionally dysregulated. Don’t get sucked into their vortex.
“So you don’t have a place to live, and your strung out on drugs….so HOW did all this happen?” Say that. Ask them the question. Pause.
Don’t let the unrealistic fear that they are living in get into your head.
Once you ask the questions, gather all info and then debrief. Review what happened to them. Tell them your version, knowing that it is more than likely the factual version.
They want you to believe “the sober living guy was mean and kicked them out of rehab”, or “the rehab is so horrible, all they want is your money.” I’ve heard it all. But the truth is and what you should say to them is, “You had the opportunity to turn your life around and you didn’t do it.”
My generation would be embarrassed to talk like that, but it is so common today. “You’re on heroin and it’s somebody else’s fault? Are you kidding me?”
It’s no one else’s fault.
You might have to have these conversations over and over again until it registers with the addict in your life. Don’t step in and intervene for them. Don’t solve their problems for them. Don’t enter into their vortex. This will only prevent them from realizing it’s no one else’s fault but their own.
And finally, don’t call the rehab and complain for them. They should do that themselves. After all they have no problem making a phone call to get drugs when they want them.My generation would be embarrassed to talk like that, but it is so common today. 'You’re on heroin and it’s somebody else’s fault? Are you kidding me?'Click To Tweet