What words can describe how a parent feels watching their child attempt to cover life’s pain with substances? When a child has a full-blown addiction, there can be significant financial costs on top of the emotional ones. One book which attempts to relate the family pain of substance abuse also talks about the strain placed on the family budget when addiction takes over.
An Addict’s Desperate And Drastic Steps
David Sheff’s Beautiful Boy recounts his son’s downward spiral with tales of missing credit cards, missing household items, missing checks and even missing coins from a sibling’s piggy bank. Addicts need their substance and they will do nearly anything to stay supplied. In this case, when the child left home and contacted mom and dad asking for more money, the desperate parents sent it.
If the addicted family member is a spouse, the financial dangers can become even greater. Joint bank accounts need to be watched carefully. The person may try to open a new line of credit in order to lay their hands on ready cash. In some cases, addicts have been known to frequent payday advance lending businesses.
What The Family Of An Addict Can Change
When this is the situation, the sober partner may need to take some more drastic steps. Names may need to be changed on bank accounts to protect savings. In extreme cases it may be necessary to establish a trust to safeguard the home and other major assets. The addiction can cost families inordinate amounts of capital, even when someone is maintaining vigilance. The drain can be devastating when fear is the only decision-maker.
When the child or spouse is at last ready to make a change, the costs for rehabilitation are not miniscule. As Sheff points out, money needs to be intentionally protected and then well-directed. Simply handing out money to a child not at home and on drugs isn’t always the best decision. However, investing in recovery is worth every penny.
Parents and spouses will need to make some very tough decisions about where to draw the financial line because addiction is costly. Often it will be helpful to talk with a mental health professional when making those kinds of decisions. They can offer dispassionate insight into whether it’s time for tough love or something else. When you’re in the middle of the situation, the overwhelming emotions can make it hard to reason wisely.
Finding Guidance When Dealing With The Addiction Of A Loved One
A biographical account cannot fully express what a family goes through when a member becomes addicted to alcohol or drugs, but it can lay out some of the potential landmines. Parents of children with addiction can learn from the mistakes of others. Get help when deciding how to support your loved one dependent on substances. There is a right time to close the billfold and a right time to open it again.
Read More To Find Out If You’re Enabling The Addict In Your Life And Break Free From The Cycle Of Broken Promises!