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Are You Loving An Addict? 15 Common Signs You Might Be

Updated on September 13, 2019
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Through her passion for writing and coaching, Rachael shares her experience and support in the journey of loving an addict.

I'm guessing someone you love is exhibiting a few behaviors you’re not completely sure about. Perhaps you've seen them engage in increasingly regular binges of drink, drugs, or gambling. Maybe you've simply noticed emotional changes. And the changes aren't good. Or somehow you just know something's wrong and you're wondering if it's got something to do with the supposed 'social' activities our loved ones can get involved in.

And I'm guessing you would like some way of knowing what you are dealing with. And whether you need to do anything.

Recently I talked about how important gut instinct is in considering whether a person you love is under the influence of addiction. The reason I talked about this is because addiction can be extremely cunning and will attempt to conceal itself for as long as possible. Sometimes, your instincts are the only, and best, indicator of whether sometime is going on.

But, if your instincts are off, or they've been triggered but you want more proof here are 15 common signs of addiction that your loved one might be displaying. While some of these signs could also be due to stress or mental illness, if any are present, along with a sense or evidence that substance or behavioral abuse is a factor, you could be dealing with an addiction problem.

  • Change in sleeping patterns
  • Theft or unexplained loss of property
  • More regular illness (coughs, colds etc)
  • Breaking promises
  • Irritability and mood swings
  • Abdicating responsibilities
  • Weight loss or weight gain
  • Irrational behaviors
  • Depressed or withdrawn
  • Poor finances
  • Making excuses to indulge
  • Lying and manipulative behaviours
  • Decreased self care
  • Loss of meaningful relationships
  • Lack of concentration

Addiction doesn't always present itself like we imagine it might, before we have any experience of it. Some of the most severe addicts wouldn? raise the suspicions of most people. My husband was one of these people. He held down a job, he had a very successful football career, a son, a home, friends and a loving family. He was also seriously addicted to alcohol, drugs and gambling but in order to protect his addiction, he maintained an extremely tight cover that kept him under the radar.

But for those willing to risk looking a little closer, the signs were there and he displayed nearly all of those mentioned above. When his shroud came down fully in recovery, it was clear to see just how obvious it all really should have been but in love we all looked for the best instead. Or we looked away.

Don’t be afraid to notice the signs if they are there, or to trust yourself in what you see, hear or sense. Only with awareness, can we begin to protect ourselves, and our loved ones from addiction.

Photo credit:photo 2007 Redvers

This content is accurate and true to the best of the author’s knowledge and is not meant to substitute for formal and individualized advice from a qualified professional.


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