What Can I Do as the Friend of an Addict?

What Can I Do as the Friend of an Addict?In 1990, a new PSA told the public, “Friends don’t let friends drive drunk.” Today, that tagline could be expanded to say “friends don’t let friends stay addicts,” but addressing a substance addiction can be trickier than simply taking a friend’s keys and providing a ride home. There are several potential issues friends face when trying to help an amphetamine addict, including the following:

  • Addicts become experts at hiding or denying the problem
  • The friend becomes combative if questioned about drinking or drug use
  • Family members often enable the addiction by providing cover or excuses
  • Those who admit abuse often promise to fix the problem on their own

These issues should never stand in the way of helping friends deal with their addictions, and there are several ways to provide help.

Amphetamine and Substance Abuse Warning Signs

An addiction problem can reveal itself through physical and behavioral symptoms. Friends need to watch for potential warning signs, including the following:

  • Being drunk or high at inappropriate times or places
  • Scheduling appointments with several different doctors
  • Financial problems that often lead to borrowing money
  • Escalating tendencies toward social withdrawal and isolation
  • Drastic changes in the person’s mood and emotional state
  • Ailments like nausea, itchiness, constipation and headaches
  • Physical signs like bloodshot eyes, dry throat and pale skin

If you take drugs like amphetamine together socially, watch for an increased willingness to take risks and an obsession with acquiring more drugs.

Addressing a Friend’s Addiction

If the friend denies the problem, makes empty promises or responds in anger, there are several options, including the following:

  • Reach out to loved ones to see if they detected addictive behavior
  • Encourage the use of a mediator if there are complex family issues
  • Contact the sponsor or rehab facility if the friend is in recovery
  • Provide printed materials on addiction and professional treatment
  • Recruit family members and loved ones to stage an intervention

Remember that discussing a friend’s addiction should be done with the utmost discretion and tact, and it must never turn into criticism or gossip. What you say might be repeated to the friend, and negative words can compromise your ability to help.

Amphetamine Addiction Intervention Tips

If an addiction intervention is necessary, consider using a professional interventionist or the family doctor. However, if the intervention is done independently, learn the best ways to make it effective, including the following:

  • Select participants with whom the friend feels comfortable and respected
  • Make sure everyone learns about the particular substance addiction
  • Choose a time and location when the addict is least likely to be high
  • Write down and rehearse exactly what will be said at the intervention
  • Maintain a calm, compassionate and steadfast tone against rebuttals

If opting not to use a professional, at least get professional advice on how the intervention should be staged. Try to get family members involved, but recognize that they might have fears, including the following:

  • Reprisal against family members who speak out
  • Admitting addiction will tarnish the family’s reputation
  • The impact that treatment might have on the family

Sometimes helping an addicted friend also means helping the family. The same principle applies to professional rehab, which typically engages the family in the recovery.

Get Help for Amphetamine Addiction Now

If you or a friend struggles with amphetamine addiction, we can help. Our counselors are available 24 hours a day to assist with interventions, discuss warning signs and explain treatment options. We can also provide printed brochures on treatment and check health insurance policies for rehab benefits. Call our toll-free helpline now.