The month of September celebrates national recovery month. For those who are in recovery or perhaps you are supporting someone who is, it is important to recognize the significance of this milestone. For others who may still struggle with addiction, it is not too late to make a step in the right direction. Do you know someone who is currently struggling with addiction? Are you having any trouble talking to them about it? Whether it is a close friend or family member, starting a conversation about addiction can be challenging for many people. For some it might be not knowing what to say, or it could be having some fears about how they could respond. Whatever the holdup is, having a conversation can be life changing for that person and it may be something they need to hear. To start any conversation, remember the overall purpose of it, which is to provide support.
This can help take away, or divert you from any fears you are having about the conversation. Keep the purpose in the forefront of your mind during your conversation. Then start the conversation by being honest about your feelings regarding the person you are talking to and their addiction. Phrases like “I am worried about your health” or “I really care about you and want to help” can be useful. Next, offer some support. Ask the person what they need to make a step forward and find a way to support them in their decision and with some of their actions. If you are willing and feel comfortable, offer ways to be involved in their treatment or to help them find resources that they need to recover. Finally, help hold them accountable after your conversation. Let them know they are not alone and that they can have a support person in you to help them along their recovery journey.