How to Talk to Your Kids About Your Drug or Alcohol Addiction

Becoming a parent is a life changer. One of the ways your life changes forever is the question of who you answer to. As a parent we would normally say that what changes when you have children is that someone has to answer to you. However, It is your job to provide your children with their basic needs, food, lodging, hydration, safety, and just as importantly, if not more, you must provide them with love. These must be your priorities.

So now here you are. You’ve finally come to terms with the fact that you’re struggling with an addiction to drugs and an addiction to alcohol. You’ve decided to seek out help. But now you need to tell your kids about it. How do you tell them you’ve become addicted to drugs? How can you admit to them you’ve become an alcoholic?

Talking to the Kids

Here are three ways to approach a conversation with your kids about your own drug and alcohol abuse.

  1. Go Sober. Do not approach this conversation high or drunk. This may seem obvious, but sometimes we all need a loving nudge to do the hard thing, put aside the numbing of fear and pain for this conversation. You’ll need those raw emotions anyway.
  2. Go with some ideas of how you might diffuse a difficult conversation. If you sit down and write out a few ways you might deescalate tense words or how you can calm down when you’re starting to feel judged or angry or sad. Bring with you to the conversation specific ideas like taking 3 deep breaths before continuing. Or counting slowly in your head to ten. These are basic methods, but having them in your head, intentionally as you go into the conversation will help it to stay calm and productive.
  3. Be honest and age appropriate. You don’t have to tell them every single detail of your trauma and addiction struggles. But be honest. Answer as many questions as you feel like are age appropriate. Be as open with them as you can. This will help them rediscover any trust for you they may have lost. It will show them how serious you are about finding the best rehab center for you and really focusing on your addiction recovery.

When you and your family are ready, call us at (855) 441-2449 to get started on your drug or alcohol addiction treatment. We’re here to make it as easy on everyone as possible.

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