When the lines are blurred for those needing alcohol addiction treatment programs, it is understood that if a person doesn’t recognize their own addiction, they can’t be helped. Yet what happens when a person is addicted to alcohol and their own family members don’t recognize the signs? When it comes to alcohol addiction, the lines can be blurred. Drugs are illegal, so the very arrangement of obtaining drugs is enough to make friends and family members worry. Alcohol, however, is legal and socially acceptable, and this can make it difficult to know when someone is crossing over the lines to dependency.
Take the instance of Michael, a middle-aged man with three teenagers, a wife, a home, and a good job. Certainly not the portrait of an alcoholic, or so one would think. He always enjoyed drinking, and it went along with all phases of his life. When he had his children, he settled down a bit, but he still drank each day after work and heavily on weekends. Yet, he was a good father, a good husband and tended to his daily responsibilities. His family always believed him to be a heavy drinker, but nothing more than that.
Michael’s perception of drinking came from his own father, who drank heavily but was never treated for an addiction. He believed that this was how everyone lived their lives, and for the most part, he restricted his drinking to after work only. However, there were days where he came into work hung-over or went to work slightly intoxicated. But he reassured himself that he could still do his job and maintain his performance, even though deep down, he knew he could be putting others at risk.
Overcoming the stigmas of alcohol dependency was what he thought he was doing all along. Other people couldn’t handle their alcohol, but he could. Things started to change when he caught his teenage son drinking. In an effort to change his son’s behavior, he said that he would stop drinking and focus on fun things that he and his son could do together. It sounded good in theory, except he couldn’t stop.
He found himself craving alcohol and feeling very irritable when he could not drink in the evenings. He began hiding his habit from his son and arguing with his family more. Even though he had always maintained much of his life, he never realized how dependent he was on alcohol. He began feeling guilty of his habit and decided it was time to join an outpatient addiction treatment program.
Michael’s story is like many others. Sometimes people believe that all addicts must be suffering socially, physically and emotionally, but the truth is that there are various forms of addiction. For people in these positions, outpatient addiction treatment programs are ideal. Recovering addicts can maintain their jobs and see their families while treating their problems. For him, this was a good fit since he didn’t need to be monitored 24/7. His evenings continue to be most difficult, but the therapy he receives from his addiction treatment program is constructive and give him the motivation he needs to avoid alcohol and find other enjoyments in life.