Over these past few weeks, we’ve talked a lot about the COVID-19 pandemic and the damage it is causing for people battling addictions. But what about those who are living with dependent people? That is certainly a very real scenario as well and one that deserves to be recognized. So we want to address that population too and help them steer their loved ones toward sobriety.
Living with an addict can be an extremely different experience for many. There are situations where a loved one (or housemate) is hiding a problem and you may not even realize it. And there are also instances that can be much more threatening, where a user you live with may turn violent or aggressive. In our opinion, it is important to reach out in any scenario; for the health and well being of everyone in the household.
Based on the data we’ve seen, alcoholism appears to be one of the biggest issues happening during coronavirus quarantines. It is a substance that is readily available and stats are showing that drinking problems are on the rise.
And heavy drinking can present real dangers to people in the home; as the website Healthline recently pointed out.
“Intoxication can present many unpredictable events in the home, including physical dangers,” Healthline writer Kristeen Cherney explained. “When under the influence, your loved one may become angry and lash out. They likely don’t even realize they’re behaving this way, and they may not remember once the effects of the alcohol wear off. Someone dealing with alcoholism may also become angry or irritable when they don’t have access to alcohol because they’re experiencing withdrawal.”
For those who are more subtle about their substance abuse, it is important to look for clues when assessing a true addiction problems. Do you find that a loved one is secretly making alcohol purchases? Or, in the case of drug use, do they often disappear into the bathroom for long periods of time? Checking trash bags may also a worthwhile effort if you suspect there is a secret problem.
Healthline made a good final point in emphasizing enablement and why you should steer away from furthering the problem. Though it may be hard, don’t continue to buy large quantities of alcohol on market runs and don’t turn the other cheek if you see dangerous behavior happening in the home. Despite the quarantine situation, sober living options are still available and should be utilized if a problem exists.