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Loving someone with an addiction

Hey guys. I’m really struggling with something right now in my personal life and I felt like this was a good place to talk about it.

My best friend at school is really struggling in the depths of his addiction to drugs and alcohol right now. It’s really, really hard for me to sit back and watch one of the people I love and respect, basically destroy himself. I’m not trying to paint myself as the victim in this situation, since obviously he is the one struggling with addiction. Sometimes I feel like I’m working harder on his recovery than he is – I feel like I care more about him getting sober and getting on the right track than he does.

It’s really hard too, because he’s my best friend at school and obviously I want to lean on him for support, but most of the time I can’t because I’m sober and he’s not. It’s frustrating that our friendship is on such an uneven playing field, since I’m his main support at college, but he can’t return the favor. Some really awful things have happened while he’s been high / drunk, but I don’t know what event will make him realize that he needs to take his recovery more seriously.

I don’t really know what to do. Thoughts?

2 Replies to “Loving someone with an addiction”

  1. Sara says:

    I can relate to both sides of the story. I know the frustration from your end and the helplessness on his. As hard as it is sometimes it needs to get worse before it gets better. You have to be in enough pain to say, enough is enough. To watch a friend be in this type of pain is so so tough; he is definitely lucky to have someone like you. Right now he might not be able to be the friend you need, so know there may have to be a shift in your expectations. But some tough love may be needed and just be like, I am here for you when you are ready to help yourself until then I can’t sit here and watch you self destruct.

    I hope everything works out for him, when it does he will realize how lucky he is to have you. I took so much for granted while I was using, but now I am so grateful for the people who have supported me. Tough love and all.

  2. Sam B. says:

    Yeah, I totally know what you’re sayin. My friend drank and drugged a lot, it was the only way he knew how to cope with the pain he was going through. It was hard to watch and know that I can’t help. I had to remember I have my own issues I have to deal with and I can’t save him. I can only be here for when he’s ready to get help.

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