Brothers and sisters can hold a special place in our hearts and in our lives, which can make it that much more difficult to watch them struggle with drug or alcohol abuse. Because there seems to be a special, unspoken bond between siblings, you might be one of the first to notice if he/she needs professional help.Here are some of the ways you can tell if your brother or sister needs substance abuse treatment, and what you can do in order to help them.
Is Their Behavior Drastically Different?
As we mentioned before, you know your own sibling better than most, so you would be able to tell whether or not their behavior has changed for the worse. If you notice that they have odd sleeping patterns, are skipping out on work or school, or are no longer interested in their usual activities, it could be that they have an alcohol or drug abuse problem.
Indirect changes in behavior could also include investing their money and energy elsewhere. For instance, if your brother or sister is not one to ask for money, but is all the sudden asking for spare cash, this could indicate their addiction. Or if they are running with a different crowd of people, this could be call for concern, too.
Are They Making Excuses for Their Actions?
If you have noticed a change in their behavior and addressed them about it, they might make excuses or even lie about their actions. As their sibling, you might be able to tell when they are lying, because you know it to be so unlike them. They may get defensive too, and you can reassure them that you are only coming from a place of love.
Unfortunately, lying is tricky behavior because you don’t know what they are really up to. The situation could be worse than what it leads on, too. Inform close family members about this odd and dangerous action, so that you can all watch out for your sibling’s safety. However, be careful you are not enabling their addiction, as it can be difficult not to do so with a loved one.
Have You Caught Them in Their Habit?
Once you have observed their odd behavior and heard their lies, you might actually catch them in the act of drinking or doing drugs. Perhaps, instead, you find empty liquor bottles and drug paraphilia in their residence or car. Either of these discoveries could prove that your sibling has a drug or alcohol addiction and needs substance abuse treatment.
How You Can Help
Even though this is your sibling and you have a special relationship, you will still need to tread lightly. Arguing with your brother or sister won’t do anyone any good, and it can tear the family apart. The best thing you can do is to visit or call your local rehab center and ask for advice. They will be able to coach you on intervention and introducing the idea of substance abuse treatment to your beloved sibling.
If you have reason to believe that your brother or sister is in need of substance abuse treatment, contact us at South Coast Counseling today. We can help your sibling get their health back on track and bring your family back together.