Love is something that brings out the best in many of us, but sometimes it clouds our minds and only lets us see what we want. What may very well be broken, we don’t see. A cry for help? Unnoticed. For many, love is denial, love is unconditional and so long as love is present nothing can truly be wrong. Dealing with addiction in loved ones can be very difficult, as we do not want to see someone we love hurting themselves despite all of the feelings and powerful emotions we project onto them. While we may sometimes deny what we see happening to the ones we care for so deeply, in order to care for them it is helpful to know the signs of substance abuse in order to truly help them.
Dealing with addiction in loved ones can be very difficult. Some people are oblivious to it for a long time, and others who do recognize the signs simply deny what they see in order to not have to deal with the unfortunate truth that someone they know is in trouble. Many drug users abuse their substance of choice in order to “control” their feelings. Someone on meth may want to “speed things up” and enjoy the burst of energy smoking crack or snorting cocaine provides. For an alcoholic, however, their life and problems may be at too quick a pace for them and they need to drink or take “downers” to regain some level of control. Something else to pay attention to is your partner’s sex drive. Are they suddenly wanting to have sex all the time and seem to be able to “go all night”? This may be a sign that your love one is using methamphetamines. The opposite also applies. Has your partner had a sudden loss of interest in sex? It may not be a loss of interest in you, or a dying attraction, certain benzodiazepines that people use to decrease stress can also affect their sex drive negatively.
A more known fact about drug use that may help recognize what’s going on is weight gain and weight loss. While the use of cocaine or other similar stimulants may initially make the user look slimmer and more in shape it may indeed be the drugs having an unhealthy affect on one’s body. On the other hand, marijuana smokers have been known to gain weight during the initial period of getting into the drug, possibly due to increased appetite from the weed.
Another few things to consider are your loved one’s friends and habits changing suddenly. No one wants to admit that their daughter or son are stealing from you to buy drugs, but it does happen. Not only is your toaster potentially in danger of being sold, but your addicted loved one may be looting your liquor cabinet or downing you prescription pills. On top of this behavior is the sudden list of new friends that your partner or child seem to have. Peer pressure is something that strongly affects teenagers, but can also affect adults. If your loved one suddenly has a bunch of new friends you’ve never heard of, it may be cause for concern.