About the Book
It's okay to love them. It's your right to help them.
Addiction destroys people and can even end lives. When you know or suspect that someone you love
is suffering from addiction you have two goals: getting your loved one into treatment and turning
that treatment into full-fledged sobriety. Many addiction experts tell you that you have to
disengage or risk being an enabler, a codependent bystander, in the wreckage of an addict's life;
that you have to cut all ties or be taken advantage of financially and emotionally; that you have to
protect yourself from your loved one, who isn't the person you used to know. But many friends and
family members find it unnatural, even impossible, to turn away from a person they love who is at
his lowest point, and refuse to believe that their addict is lost to addiction.
Backed by his years of experience, Dr. Westreich guides you through the process of getting the
addict you love on the road to treatment and recovery. He provides detailed scripts to lead you
through pivotal conversations with the addict in your life, highlighting the words that he's proven
to be most effective and the words to avoid. With this book in hand, family and friends will know,
for example, how to motivate their addict to recognize his problem based on the addict's own
definition of what addiction looks like; how to "raise the bottom" that addicts so often must hit to
a more acceptable level—such as their experiencing embarrassment, job loss, or ill health; and when
to use gentle disagreement, quiet listening, or forceful confrontation to move the addict toward
treatment, while managing and protecting their own emotions. Dr. Westreich also shows how to engage
a therapist in the process and provides methods for combating an addict's defense mechanisms. By
outlining several treatment options, he helps you to weigh what each can and cannot accomplish,
which is the most effective treatment for the kind of addiction you are dealing with, what each
treatment requires of the recovering addict and the friend or family member, and how successful each
is. Dr. Westreich also takes care to discuss the kinds of special situations you may face when the
addict in your life, in addition to having a substance abuse problem, is a minor, is pregnant, has
mental or medical diseases, or has other issues that are likely to affect recovery.
Helping the Addict You Love is the guide that so many loved ones of addicts have desperately
needed. Dr. Westreich supports you through the emotional process of helping the addict you love,
tells you it's okay to want to help, and teaches you how to do so.