How to Talk About Your Addiction

Discussing your addiction with anyone, especially relatives, can be a challenge and also scary. One of the best things to do is to prepare yourself for this discussion. At Enlight Treatment Center, we’d like to share with you some tips on how to open up to loved ones about your addiction. 

Come to Terms With Your Addiction

Before you can talk about your addiction with anyone, it’s important to be fully aware of what your addiction is and how it’s impacted those around you.  There are different types of addiction, including alcohol, substance, and gambling addiction. Some people are addicted to just one thing, while others are addicted to multiple things. After taking a step back and examining what you are addicted to, you can then share it with others while you seek treatment.  

What Are the Symptoms of Addiction?

There are different symptoms associated with addiction. One of the tale-tell signs of addiction is the amount of time you spend abusing substances or engaging in problematic behavior. If you spend countless hours gambling, engaging in risky behavior, or using substances, you may have an addiction. The other part of addiction is not being able to stop certain behaviors or misusing substances, even if you want too. 

Once your addiction begins taking over your life, a lot of things will change. You may stop engaging in activities you once enjoyed, stop going to work regularly or stop going to school. If you’re in a relationship, you are likely to experience problems as a result of your addiction. Other symptoms of addiction include withdrawal symptoms when you are not using a specific substance or involved in certain behaviors.

Talking About Your Addiction

Don’t worry about finding the perfect words. Talking about addiction with friends and family will most likely happen in an informal setting. We know it can be weird and uncomfortable, but this is your time to share what you’ve been going through, and use the words you want to use. Take a deep breath and start talking when you’re ready. Ask your friends or relatives to be patient with you while you start the conversation. Remember to take your time and breathe.

Let them ask questions

When talking to friends and family about your addiction, they’ll probably have questions. Because addiction affects not only the user but the people around them, your loved ones will probably want some insight into your behavior. It’s ok if you don’t have the answers to their questions, but by letting them ask you, you are giving yourself the opportunity to start reflecting on what’s been going on in your life. A Lot of times people want to know “why” you became addicted in the first place, and there’s a good chance you won’t know until you complete treatment. A completely appropriate answer to that question is “I’m not sure but I’m willing to work to find out”. 


Like we mentioned before, addiction affects family and friends. When you talk about your addiction, it will also be a good time to apologize for anything you may have done that was hurtful. Addiction makes you do things you would not normally do, such as steal from family members and other places and avoid responsibility. An apology goes a long way. Your family may be upset, but they love you and probably frustrated because they don’t know how they can help you. 

Discuss next steps

Now that you talked about your addiction, clear the air by telling them how you plan to address the situation and recover. Discussing the next steps is the part when your family and friends might become overbearing, and it can be an overwhelming feeling. Keep in mind everyone’s emotions are all over the place, and your relatives may be in shock. People may have opinions on what is the best addiction treatment option for you. The best thing you can do is research yourself and pick a facility that feels right for you. After all, you know your addiction best.

How Enlight Treatment Center Can Help You

Enlight Treatment Center is a substance abuse and dual-diagnosis facility located in Southern California. We help individuals throughout the journey to recovery by providing scenic views of beautiful Los Angeles and taking clients away from chaos in the city. This helps remove them from situations that caused their active addiction in the first place. 

Our treatment options include:

  • Detoxification
  • Incidental medical services (IMS)
  • Residential inpatient
  • Dual-diagnosis treatment
  • Gambling addiction treatment

Enlight’s staff is composed of addiction treatment professionals who are caring and compassionate. Contact us today to learn more about our addiction treatment programs and see how we can help you or your loved one! 

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We Are Here to Help

Our admissions team is available 24/7 for those in need of treatment. Even if we are not a match for you or your loved one, we are here to help. It is a cornerstone practice of  Enlight Treatment Center to serve as a bridge between the community and treatment.