Do you have a family member whose addiction has escalated during this pandemic? If so, you are not alone. Imagine addiction as a seed planted within the mind – perhaps lying dormant or maybe already in bloom – and the Coronavirus comes along to foster the perfect environment for that seed to thrive. The mind acts as the soil that nourishes the addictive patterns, and the isolation, stress, and worry of the pandemic are the perfect set of circumstances to increase mental health disorders which feed addiction. The time off work acts as the sun, and provides the freedom, autonomy, and lack of accountability that encourages the disease to grow. The unemployment checks and extra stimulus money act like the rain, and with extra cash in hand the disease of addiction is free to flourish.
You may be watching this process unfold with your loved one. Their responsibilities have been lifted and they have more money than when they were working which is allowing them to spiral further into their addiction. For many, the spiral will not end until the conditions change. They won’t be ready to ask for help until the money runs out or they have to return to work. They may not even realize how bad it has gotten because they are not required to manage their same daily responsibilities during the pandemic. It might not be until they have to get up early, go to work, and return to a normal routine that they suddenly see just how out of hand their drug or alcohol abuse has gotten.
The scary thing is that we are living in a time of uncertainty. We don’t know when the conditions will change. The pandemic continues to impact all of us and no one knows when it will come to an end. You don’t want your loved one to wait for the pandemic to be over, the financial well to have run dry, or a mental health crisis emerge before getting help.
Not only is this the perfect environment for addiction to grow rampant, but also the perfect time to make a change. What better time to get help than when you don’t have to be at work and you are fully supported financially by the Federal Pandemic Unemployment Compensation program? What other time will your loved one have the paid time off to attend treatment so that they can become sober, healthy, and free?
If your loved one waits until the rain stops, they may not have the opportunity to get the help that they deserve. The point at which they are recalled to work is not the time to say, “Wait, I need to go to treatment.” How can you support your loved one to act now and seek out treatment while the opportunity is ripe? Change is hard, but we know that it is coming whether we want it to or not. The conditions of this pandemic will end. Wouldn’t it be better to emerge into that life having used this time for good?
We would love to hear from you. What is preventing your loved one seeking treatment, and how can we support you to foster change before time is up? Leave a comment below or reach out to our admissions director at 540-535-1111.