We say empathy is a bridge, a bridge that can connect us at some of our greatest moments of hurt and disappointments.
It’s certainly been useful in my life in relating to people.
Through the course of my life and in helping those bound with drugs and alcohol I’ve had to cross the bridge of empathy many times.
It’s been the reoccurring theme that has allowed me to step right into lives of those that have made the biggest mess of their circumstances.
It’s been the theme that has allowed me to be able to look at someone over and over and say with a full heart and much compassion “I Understand.”
In saying that “I Understand,” it’s not even that I have experienced every failure or every struggle of those I have helped. It’s that I only can say I understand what it means to fail, know what it's like to hurt, and our pain may be different, it's still suffering, and I am here.
The reality here is that our empathy is a precious gift...
Enabling a drug addict means you’re doing things that help an addicted individual continue addictive behaviors.
This is a nice logical, tidy definition, stated in such a way that no logical, right-minded individual would ever enable an addicted friend or loved one.
Before we get to parent-shaming, friend-shaming, sibling-shaming, or any other type of shaming and unfair judgment toward others, however, it’s important to note that dealing with an addict, especially a family member or close friend, involves a lot of emotion–love, fear, guilt, more guilt, and even more guilt–and not a lot of logic.
After all, it’s only natural to “help” someone you love by giving them money for food or providing them a place to sleep or not reporting their behavior to authorities. Quite often the enabler convinces himself that he is helping.
The Dangers of Enabling
Enabling prolongs the addiction and prevents the addict...
6 Suggestions for How to Deal with a Drug Addict in Your Family
The damaging effects of drug addiction go beyond just the addict. Addiction comes with an emotional, psychological, and financial cost to those close to the addict as well. There are things, however, loved ones can do to protect themselves and help the addict regain control of his or her life.
Practical Steps on How to Deal with a Drug Addict
Educate yourself Treatment options vary depending on the drug being abused. Start with reputable websites. Find local resources in your area. The more you understand about the complexities of drug addiction, the more you'll be able to discuss the problem with people who matter. Part of your education should be geared toward finding experts who can help.
Find support groups. There's more to overcoming an addiction than visiting a doctor and having him or her fix the problem. It requires short-term and long-term support. Support groups consist of others struggling...
Addiction Affects All of Us: How to Help a Recovering Addict
Fear. Anger. Guilt. Uncertainty. Shame. Isolation. Helplessness.
Family members grapple with similar feelings to those addicts themselves struggle with. Drugs barricade the connection between addict and loved one, fend off attempts to help, and instill toxicity. Recovering from addiction exemplifies a time when family could hardly be more important, or difficult. Figuring out How to Help a Recovering Addict is often disparaging, but remember: you are not alone.
Drug addictions among family members put their empathy to the test. Without personally experiencing the cravings, loved ones see only the horribly detrimental consequences. Understandably, they resent the substance at the root of their pain as they watch drugs coerce someone they hold dear into making harmful choices. Maintaining love for an addict, without accepting the drug or the ways that substance abuse can encourage an addict...
The benefits of long term drug rehab program are many, beginning with how we identify those who participate. We do not call them clients or residents.
We refer to them as students, because they learning a new way of living. We believe that through proper training the learned behavior of Drug & Alcohol addiction can be broken and a new way of life can be learned.
At Teen Challenge students are given the following opportunities as benefits when they enter our program:
1.They are able to separate themselves from the environment and relationships that have contributed to their life-controlling problems
2. They come to a controlled environment which helps them to avoid the substances and behaviors that have contributed to their self-destruction.
3. They enter into a loving and supportive Christian community.
4. They are mentored by others who have walked the same path to freedom and understand the process they are going through as they grow.
5. They are positioned to...
When your loved one is battling addiction, you feel every up, you feel every down, you feel the highs, the lows, you celebrate every victory, and you mourn every defeat.
The reality is you get left feeling tossed about not really certain when the next wave is going to come and where it’s going to leave you.
It's important as you walk through this storm that you find a safe place to anchor to. Otherwise your well-meaning attempts to help and love for your family member can pull you out into vast storm of this addiction.
I did a little research on selecting the right anchor for a boat. When choosing an anchor the ship’s owner is concerned with the holding power of an anchor. The right anchor doesn’t have to be that big relative to the size of boat it’s trying to secure.
“The holding power of modern anchors is remarkable, varying between 10 and 200 times the anchor’s weight. This means that some anchors that weigh only 5 lb. can hold in excess...
This can be such a hopeful and stressful time in your life. You’ve possibly had quite a few conversations in the past with your loved one about finally getting help. Some have gone terrible and ended in arguments and others have shown glimmers of hope. Today is one of those days. They have finally acknowledged that they are ready to get help.
You sit down at the computer, open your internet browser, pull up google, and type the words “Drug Rehab” as you start to search for a location to send your family member.
You’re, undoubtedly, immediately faced with a variety of options as your sort through all the different programs that are available.
Faith Based Alternatives
How can anyone possibly look through all of these options and make a wise decision?
Which one will be right for my family member?
Take a second right now and just breathe.
There are plenty of amazing options out there for your loved one to...
Just this week I took my oldest daughter to the park to learn how to ride a bike without training wheels for the first time.
This is an exciting, yet nerve racking moment. Chloe, my oldest daughter, is so excited to graduate to her big girl bike. She is ready to conquer the world on one hand. But on the other hand she isn’t ready for Dad to not be by her side as she learns something new.
On my side, I am excited for my little girl, ready to see her learn how to finally ride this bike on her own. As we spent time on the bike, we began to learn the basics. I showed her how to get on the bike. The importance of her balance when on the bike. The importance of holding on, learning how to pedal, etc.
Even after all this Chloe doesn’t know that I’ve never taught anyone to ride a bike before. I mean, I know how to ride a bike myself. I have seen videos on tv where parents have taught kids. Though I don’t recall when my parents taught me. I know they did teach me, but...
I think I live in the minority. I have a hard time viewing addiction as a disease.
I am not so opposed to some of the reasoning this label exist today when it comes to addiction. I can certainly understand the physical and mental effects that addiction can have on an individual. Very often pursuing “cold-turkey” methods of quitting can be dangerous and life threatening without the help of a medical professional for detox.
There are also cases where children are born addicted to drugs because of poor choices made by parents and these children didn’t choose to be addicted and this could be a scenario where this label also fits.
But that's where the definition ends for me.
I am no stranger to health issues in my family. I have, over the course of my life, watched many loved ones battle different medical problems. Many of which there is no real cure for, just medicine to maintain quality of life, while the medical community still searches for an answer. I have watched...
The story of Naaman is a very interesting story in the scripture. When we dig into this story, it gives us a really good perceptive on Getting Clean.
In 2 Kings 5:1-14, we read the story of a great and powerful man that had an issue that he tried to conceal well from everyone around him. He was a commander of a Syrian army, who was stricken with a terrible condition.
We know from the scripture that the King, Namaan’s wife, and the servant girl knew about this issue. I wonder how many others knew.
The servant approaches Namaan and gives him a scenario of how he can get free. After a few conversations and some controversy with the kings, he ends up at Elijah’s door.
Elijah gives Namaan a very clear way to get healed. The caveat is that Elijah gives these instructions through a servant. “Go wash in the Jordan 7 times.”
Namaan’s pride is hurt. He’s furious because he has traveled all this way and Elijah doesn't even speak to him.