A common thought shared by many “functional” addicts is that as long as their drug use affects only themselves, then it is not really a problem. Even a heavy user can show up for work everyday and not inconvenience coworkers; they can continue to financially support themselves and families. If the substance abuse in question appears not to be affecting their relationships, it can be difficult to believe treatment is necessary. Even more difficult is to convince a loved one of the harm their habit truly causes. Read through the thoughts outlined below for some reasons to seek rehab before a “harmless” habit becomes a raging and destructive one.
Four Considerations For “Harmless” Substance Abusers
- Permanent physical harm to oneself is a huge consideration. Brain damage, liver damage and mental illness can all result from substance abuse. These are not always easily observable or measurable. Some permanent lasting harm, like liver damage for example, may not even show up on blood tests until the damage is significant and difficult to reverse.
- Relationships may be damaged. Be honest, how much harm do we inflict on others but dismiss their concerns, complaints or objections? An addict may truly believe they are only harming themselves, but ignore the distress their habit causes friends and family. The worry and fear for a loved one with a substance abuse problem may appear harmless or trivial on the surface, but in fact be extremely painful. A substance abuser isn’t always in the best position to judge the harm they create around them.
- Coworkers may be impacted. Just because someone shows up for work everyday doesn’t mean they are delivering their best. Small mistakes can happen and turn into huge issues. When in the midst of a drug habit, tempers become short. Colleagues may notice the circles under bloodshot eyes and be concerned but too afraid to say anything.
- Why wait until the harm occurs? Once it does, it may be irreparable. Relationships can be destroyed and finances ruined due to a drug habit. The loss of promising employment opportunities can be difficult to recover from. Even worse than job loss are legal consequences for illegal behavior, which can be permanently on one’s record and easily discovered by a background check.
If you or someone you love is ready to move beyond substance abuse toward a better future, we are here to help. Please call us at 800-737-0933