Overcoming the loss of a close friend or family member is one of the hardest obstacles we, as humans, can face. Learning to cope with this kind of grief can take a lot of time and patience. Some of those who have been through this anguish have turned to other family members or close friends, while others may turn to drugs or alcohol as a coping mechanism.
If they’re a first time user, they may think that these urges are a normal reaction to the situation because they’ve never felt that type of urge before. Addicts, whether to drugs or alcohol, are usually able to recognize that craving. There are ways to overcome these temptations, along with treatment options for those who have already taken the steps toward addiction.
Reasons Why Drugs and Alcohol Are Used as a Coping Mechanism
Most people above the age of 30 has had a drink or two. Different people have different reactions to alcohol and that’s what separates the addicts from those who don’t struggle with this particular battle. The same concept goes for those who are addicted to drugs.
Although drugs and alcohol have very different effects, people still use them for usually similar reasons. They may not want to recognize a problem that’s causing them to feel this way and make these decisions. It’s proven that an early detection or intervention gives the addict, or the person who has the temptation to go down that road, a better chance at a full recovery.
Many people who are struggling with an addiction turn to organizations or facilities. One facility that offers a variety of services is Sandy’s Place. Their website, www.sandysplace.com, explains what they have to offer, as far as treatment plans and education is coping strategies. Learning to cope in a new way is very difficult for a person who has used a drug or alcohol in order to numb their pain. The key to handling the pain is to do what might be the most uncomfortable. Ask for help and accept sympathy.
Use different resources when trying to cope. Maybe being alone and sorting out the grief is what’s best. No one person can speak for another. With this technological world, there are all sorts of things available for those who need guidance that does not involve going out and discussing this with someone. Even though talking is the most recommended method, that may not be best for everyone. You should, however, make sure others in the family are aware and understand what’s going on so they can deal with it as well.
Resisting the Temptation
Trying to stay away from drugs and alcohol after a death in the family or the death of a close friend is really difficult. Some people don’t know how to handle the grief. They may feel the need to bottle it up. When someone has bottled their emotions up for so long they almost feel like they’ve lost the ability to really express it healthily. This is very dangerous and scary. Talking through difficulty is the best thing someone can do to help themselves stay away from a substance abuse problem.
Even if the troubled one isn’t religious, sometimes talking to a priest, pastor or minister can help. Sometimes having an unbiased and truly caring listening ear can really help people feel more comfortable. They don’t feel so threatened because it’s easier talking to someone who isn’t going through the same hurt. Having a person who isn’t going through this anguish means they are able to give good advice since they have a clear head.
With addictions come something called triggers. Triggers are events or places that tempt us to make bad choices, in this case, do drugs or drink alcohol. There are popular triggers, such as, bars, clubs, restaurants or being around other people who are making those choices. When the triggers are recognized, the one who is grieving should steer clear of such events of places. If a friend asks them to go out it would be best for them to say “I’m still struggling and don’t want to put myself in that situation.”