How do you deal with those who seem to cross the line from smart caution into overly pessimistic thinly veiled “real talk” and seem to want your loved one to fail?
I’m dealing with this myself. My friends all think I should get out of my relationship (which I probably should). But the one thing that I keep telling people is that my loved one is trying his best. How can you give up on someone who is working their best? Getting sober isn’t easy and they need the support they can. If someone is telling them they’re going to fail then, well that’s adding another hurdle in their road that’s not really leading to their success.
So, let’s be supportive of them. If it’s a romantic relationship, you’re the one who loves them they’re not in the relationship, NOT THEM. If you want to keep on keeping on with this person then have the confidence in your decision and show them love.
This is one of the reasons I really struggled with Nar Anon family meetings. I would attend the group session and felt people looked at me strangely - I was just a friend, maybe girlfriend (now a spouse) and I could walk away. And they strongly advised it.
But I 100% agree with @huckjb13. It’s bloody hard to get sober and I don’t aim to be a martyr but I know I helped my husband see there was a reason to try <3
@NodSquad I’ve found that for self protection it’s best to stay away from the haters or avoid the conversations that bring it up. That might mean not being fully open with a best friend about a romantic relationship. We need to take care of ourselves because the path we walk loving someone through addiction is so tough.
BUT I taper this by saying, I found it equally beneficial to be as open as possible about things as I could. So when I felt strong I shared details with close friends and family and I watched and felt their reaction and I somewhat coached them on how to think about addiction so they could support me.
They still don’t get it right every time but this is a fight worth fighting because we need all the support we can get. Connection is the opposite of addiction. Unfortunately people have many misconceptions about addiction - but we can help them learn how common it really is!
*Remember - 1 in 7 Americans will struggle with addiction in their lifetime!
Recently I’ve felt this internal turmoil between wanting to be open about what’s on my mind (my mom’s alcohol addiction) and wanting to keep it to myself for fear of someone judging me or not understanding. I’ve noticed that I might lean towards one or the other within my friend group, depending on who I talk to. I used to feel guilty for not being present and covering up the fact that family struggles were on my mind while I was with friends, so I’d try to be open about it instead of being silent. But recently I’ve felt like a lot of people just don’t understand, and out of all my friends, I have a select few who I only really open up about this information to where it can be met with understanding and no judgement. I think the way I’ve dealt with the possibility of being judged is simply by not giving that specific person access to that part of my life I’m going through. It’s all about protecting your emotional safety.
Much appreciated. I know the feeling you are describing about other support groups. I have been in many support groups and forums that seem to be very cliquey and if you don’t say the “right thing” or do the “right thing” or just regurgitate the slogans then you are treated like you are now the one not “working the program” well enough…
I have to say this place is like a huge breath of fresh air. Everyone seems so much more helpful and open minded. I am glad I found this place.
I’ve dealt with this with my family and friends for a long time. I honestly just can’t take their advice seriously because they don’t have the same understanding or experience as we do. I resolve to just keep pushing and keeping on with my relationship because I see the progress first hand and work with her to fight it so I know she’s trying her hardest.
Agreed. We’re working towards a future where we can always be honest with everyone about this and they’ll get it but we’re not quite there yet. 1 brick at a time, day at a time, conversation at a time, person at a time we’ll get there. Sending <3 you’re not alone in this. And we can get through it together.
1 in 7 Americans will struggle with addiction in their lifetime. That means it touches everyone