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Many people in early recovery from alcohol and drug abuse have marked family difficulties. This reality exists for a variety of reasons. Alcoholism is a familial disease and one that adversely affects everyone in the person's life. Those around the alcoholic/addict become unreasonably controlling, angry, nagging and, literally obsessed with the whereabouts and behaviors of the addict. This type of behavior is simply addiction in another form. Obsession with the alcoholic/addict allows those people to escape themselves the same way that the alcoholic/addict is escaping him/herself with substances.
For these reasons, it is highly recommended that everyone in the family seek help. Don't be upset, however, if your family members or close friends do not want to seek help along with you. While it is very helpful to a recovering addict if his/her family seeks help, it is certainly not a requirement. Any member of the family can change, providing that he/she is willing to do the necessary work and behave differently. This includes the family members who want help even though the alcoholic doesn't and the alcoholic/addict who desires to stay sober even though the family members want to stay the same.
|Jennifer Mathes, Ph.D.|