You’re at that awful place – addiction, the place that nobody ever chooses or wants to be. Your dependence has spiralled out of control. You’re aware of the problems it is causing in your life. Your relationships and health are suffering. Jobs, money and opportunities have been squandered. Your friends and family are worried – or they may have distanced themselves from you. Life isn’t supposed to be like this.
And yet, you can’t stop. You may have tried to get away from your addiction. But somehow your addiction always gets you back. You kick yourself each time. Why can’t you just stop – and stay sober? You’re desperate for a way out.
But it still feels impossible to ask for help with addiction. You have no idea whom to turn to. You’re frightened what will happen if you admit your problem. You feel ashamed of saying you’re no longer in control. You still want to believe that you can sort this out by yourself. Despite everything that’s happened, it’s still terrifying to think of a life without addiction. You may have even looked up where to get addiction help – then told yourself, “I’ll get in touch tomorrow, next week, next month.”
Overcoming Your Fear of Asking for Addiction Help
These are the main reasons you’re finding it hard to ask for addiction help. We want you to know that most people in your position experience one or more of these fears.
Fear of admitting the problem
People with addictive disorders often try their best to hide what’s really going on. You may be very out of practice in telling people how you really feel. You may never have opened up about the difficulties you’re having. In addiction, you’ve been trying to escape your emotions. You may have been trying to keep things together in your daily life – spinning the plates so none of them drop. So revealing what’s really going on feels like a massive risk. You may also feel it’s a failure to admit your addiction.
At Addiction Helper, we take the first call for help from hundreds of people each day. We understand that it isn’t easy to talk about what’s going on. It’s important to understand that addiction is an illness, not a weakness or moral failing. Many of our advisors have direct experience of addiction themselves or they have an understanding of addiction within the family.
You will not be judged. You will be listened to and heard. We can ask questions to help guide the process.
Fear of things falling apart
You may think that if you ask for help with addiction then something bad will happen to you. Do you worry about what your partner will think? Maybe you fear that you’ll lose your job or your employer will find out about your addiction. If you need addiction treatment, how will you carry on with everyday life? How will you pay the bills, look after the kids, deal with everything you need to do?
These are natural and common fears. At Addiction Helper, the feedback we get from clients who go on to addiction treatment is that their worst fears typically don’t manifest. Addiction help and treatment are usually a positive experience for the people who engage with it. Instead of losing more things in life, most people find in recovery that they can restore many of their relationships, as well as their health, job prospects and finances. There are many different options for addiction help – including very flexible support that can fit with your needs.
Fear of change
Even when addiction has progressed to an extremely dangerous or damaging level, you still may fear what life will be like without your addiction. It doesn’t matter what the addiction is – alcohol addiction, drug addiction, sex addiction, eating disorders, gambling or gaming addiction, internet addiction, love addiction or anything else – always, the underlying cause is the same.
Addiction is caused by a destructive need to change the way you feel, whatever the cost. Even if you aren’t fully aware of this, it’s why the thought of asking for help is frightening. At some level, you fear making changes in your life. You don’t yet know how you’ll cope without alcohol, drugs or an addictive process, which you’ve used for months or years to feel better.
We hear from people from all walks of life who express this fear of change. People who work in high-powered jobs. Mums, dads and grandparents. Students. Public figures. People who have lost everything. People who still have so much to lose. Our advice is that incredible resources and strengths will open up to you, if you get help with your addiction. It’s a brave step but one you won’t regret.
Fear of facing up to the past
Whether this is the first time you’ve ever considered asking for addiction help, or you’ve asked for help before, you may be frightened of facing up to painful things in your past. Perhaps you drink or use drugs to avoid thinking about a loss you’ve experienced; maybe you went through something terrible as a child. Perhaps there are things you’ve done in addiction that make you feel guilty or ashamed.
Our experience at Addiction Helper is that when people ask for help, they usually find it’s a huge relief. They can begin to be honest about what’s on their mind. Surprising new opportunities open up. People find the courage to walk away from harmful people and situations. They find support and connection with people who have gone through similar things. Recovery soon offers them new hope and strategies for dealing with difficult issues. This can be the case for you too.
There’s nothing to lose is asking for addiction help. You can go ahead with addiction treatment or decide against it – but at least you’ll have choices. To speak in confidence with Addiction Helper, please get in touch day or night. If we can’t answer your call straight away at night time, we will return your call as soon as possible.