When you grow up around addiction, life is not always easy. Your relationship with your parent or loved one is fraught with tension. Your loved one may be unreliable or unreachable. They may show generous love and then take it away. They are so conflicted by their struggle with addiction that they cannot love themselves, let alone show love to those around them. Some family members and friends feel there is little hope for the future. After all, as the saying goes, ‘once an addict, always an addict.’ Right? For many children immersed in this world, one of the scariest things can be the fear of repeating this cycle when they get older. Genetics are a contributing factor to alcoholism and drug use, and you are more likely to develop an addiction if your parents or other relatives had one too. However, this is not a preordained path. It’s possible to avoid a potential addiction or to find help that will assist you in kicking your destructive habit — even if it was one you learned from one of your family members. Breaking the Cycle of Addiction Family members who witness addiction are not doomed to repeat it themselves. Though genetics do play a role in your potential for addiction, there are plenty of children to addicted individuals who do not abuse drugs or alcohol. If you are aware of this genetic disposition, you can also take steps to combat it and reduce the likelihood of developing an addiction:
- Avoid underage drinking: The earlier you start, the more likely you are to become an alcoholic.
- Talk to a doctor: Tell him or her about your family history and ask for tips on how to handle your high risk for addiction.
- Limit consumption: Try to limit consumption of alcoholic beverages. Doctors recommend no more than one drink per day for women and two drinks a day for men.
- Avoid triggers: If you know you have a tendency to use drugs or drink alcohol in certain situations or around certain people, try to avoid them.
Find Help When You Need It If you have become addicted to drugs and alcohol after growing up around it, you are not alone. Other individuals have suffered the same pain, but you can achieve recovery. It’s important to reach out for help to break the cycle of addiction that began in your childhood. Even if your loved one never successfully treated his or her problem, you don’t have to follow that path. You can decide to take back control of your life. At The Ranch PA, we can help you find life-lasting sobriety with safe, effective recovery. Contact us today to get started on your journey. (Photo via) The pictures in this blog are being used for illustrative purposes only; and any person depicted in the content, if any, is a model.