One of the most difficult things to face as a parent is finding out your child has an addiction. Whether to drugs, alcohol, porn, video games or any other vice, addiction can wreak havoc on a family. Many parents don’t realize how their own co-dependency is contributing to the problem. As a former addict and having had a son that was also an addict, I have discovered seven lies that parents of addicts tell themselves:
1. My child is not addicted, they are just struggling, and they will find themselves soon.
Families of addicts often don’t understand the complexities of addiction. They do not realize what the disease of addiction can do to a person. They don’t know where the person is headed, what the options are to help the person, how they should treat the person and how this addiction impacts their own family life and status. So many times they do nothing except shut up and keep going, and eventually watch as the addict destroys his or her own life, and usually the families as well.
2. It’s not as bad as it seems because nobody else has noticed it.
People notice addiction. The behavior of an addict is often irrational and unpredictable. Their grades will begin to plummet in school, they will start hanging out with the wrong crowd of friends, and they will become angry and agitated over little things. Addiction is never invisible.
3. Everybody’s going through this and it’s just a normal part of growing up.
Nothing about addiction is normal. The very definition of addiction reveals its abnormality. Addiction is a “repeated involvement with a substance or activity, despite the substantial harm it causes.” When you begin to want what you are addicted to more than you care about anything or anyone else in your life, you can no longer claim normalcy.
4. This has to remain a secret because it will harm the family’s reputation.
The embarrassment and shame that addiction brings to the family name is devastating, and most families fear ridicule, condemnation and being ostracized from their community, society, church, jobs, and neighborhood. Additionally, they are struggling day-to-day with the addict’s activities and its effect on their family. The pressure on them is intense, and they don’t want to be perceived as weak and unable to control their children.
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SOURCE: Christian Post, Jack Alan Levine