Psychological Tolls of Substance Abuse

Last Updated: Sep 20th 2019

Reviewed by Brittany Polansky

Just about anyone reading this can remember a time in which they didn’t realize they were being a complete belligerent jerk, where they were so short sighted in their actions they either severely embarrassed themselves or even were just a pig headed fool that permanently ruined a relationship. It was possibly over something nearly meaningless. If you haven’t experienced such a situation, maybe therapy for sociopathy should be considered as no one is perfect and we all make mistakes, especially if you’re an alcoholic considering alcohol rehab in Pompano.

For someone suffering from substance use disorder, this event may even be daily. Recovering from addiction comes with it a necessary requirement to really come to grips with the history that has developed around the abuse of a substance. This may be quite obvious with, say, an alcoholic who becomes an obnoxious loudmouth who says very venomous things randomly while intoxicated to people they would normally never think of being mean to, or less obvious such as secretly stealing funds from a relative or friend to make purchases to support their addiction. Regardless of what these actions may take the form of, they will exist and they can make recovery very difficult to even face.

Just thinking about hypotheticals, just imaging trying to reconstruct friendships and make apologies for, say, yelling at friends because they don’t understand what you do, that grass is always red and then learning later you were the one in the wrong, this can be a devastating experience. It can completely change the entire context of your existence with just a single realization. It is worse when you realize that there could be a large portion of events like this, where arguments and dramatic relationship altering events happened that can’t even be remembered, have to be faced possibly for the first time.

These unfortunate actions that result from substance use disorder can be even more savage psychologically to examine and repair. A parent coming to grips with the damage they may have done to their child’s psyche can often be a weight that will forever hang around their neck. Likewise, everyone is someone’s child and having to face one’s parents to apologize, even for the smallest mistakes, can be like chewing on glass, and so having to face a parent after terrible actions under the influence of a substance might seem undoable.

For those who have friends, family, children, parents, whomever that is trying to recover from their condition of substance use disorder, it’s okay to be angry and hold the person accountable, but be sure that you consider the opening paragraph here, that we are all fallible, no one is perfect and that it’s likely that you already have done something that didn’t even have the layer of substance abuse to blame. Offering understanding and forgiveness and support for a recovering addict can be the difference between not only their success at staying clean, but also at simply repairing a real connection that maybe should have never been severed.

Detox in Broward County as part of south Florida alcohol treatment is available for those seeking treatment. Call First Step Behavioral Health at (866) 319-6126.

Reviewed for Medical & Clinical Accuracy by Brittany Polansky

Brittany PolanskyBrittany has been working in behavioral health since 2012 and is a Primary Clinician at our facility. She is an LCSW and holds a master’s degree in social work. She has great experience with chemical dependency and co-occurring mental health diagnoses as well as various therapeutic techniques. Brittany is passionate about treating all clients with dignity and respect, and providing a safe environment where clients can begin their healing journey in recovery.