Parenting a child who is addicted to drugs or alcohol can be challenging. You may feel unsure about how to love and support your child if they are struggling with an addiction. It’s not easy for anyone, but it’s especially hard for parents. Their child is going through a difficult time. And, if you’re like many parents, you probably worry about how to help them.

You want to show your child that you support them, but you aren’t sure how. Keep reading to discover some helpful tips for supporting your child who is addicted.

1. Let them know they’re loved

The first thing you should do is let your child know that they are loved. They may not want to hear it, but telling them will help them process the addiction and give them the reassurance that they need. While they may not be able to tell you how they feel right now, they will appreciate your words later on. And, they may even surprise you and start to open up!

2. Help them get the treatment they need

If your child is struggling with an addiction, they need professional help. But, how do you help them get that help when they don’t want to seek it out? You can’t force them to get help, but you can encourage them to do so. You can offer to help them find a treatment facility if they choose to refuse help. You can also help them get their insurance card ready if they have a private plan. Most policies now cover substance abuse treatments, and many insurance providers will cover rehabilitation too.

3. Try keeping a journal together

Writing is a powerful tool for both children and adults. It can be used to express yourself or to work through issues. Keeping a journal with your child can help them process their feelings and show them that you trust them. You can write about your own feelings and experiences, as well as your child’s. This can help your child work through their feelings too. You can also record your conversations and exchanges with your child. This can help them feel safe opening up to you.

4. Make a plan together

If you want to support your child and get them into treatment, then you’ll need to work together. The good news is that planning is a very effective way to support a child who is addicted. You can plan a “supportive visit” to get them through the difficult process of admitting they have a problem and seeking professional help. During your visit, you can discuss what support means to you and what kind of support your child needs during this time. You can also plan a fun activity that both of you can enjoy while showing your child that you stand by them.

5. Discuss your concerns with your child’s doctor

If your child is in their early teens, you may want to bring up the subject of drugs and alcohol with their doctor. This is a good idea regardless of whether your child is experimenting with drugs or alcohol. You can talk to your child’s doctor about your concerns. Then, the doctor can talk to your child and help them understand where you are coming from too.The doctor can also refer your child to a support group if they feel it would be beneficial.

6. Help them find their own path to healing

If your child is addicted, it can be tempting to try to “fix” them. But, you should know that this is something they need to do on their own. You can’t force them to seek help, but you can support them in their journey. Let them know that you love them and that they are loved. Let them know they aren’t alone and that they can get through this. You can also try showing them resources online if they are interested.


Supporting your child who is addicted can be hard, but it’s important to do so. You should let them know that they are loved, that help is available, and that they don’t have to do this on their own. As a parent, you can help your child by being present for them and being a source of comfort. You can also help them to get through tough times by being there for them when they are willing to accept your help.

Knoxville Recovery Is Here For You

Eating disorders can affect anyone. If you or a loved one are currently struggling with this, help is available! We encourage you to reach out to the professionals at Knoxville Recovery Center to learn more about our personalized treatment programs and mental health services. 

Knoxville Recovery Center was founded from firsthand experience of addiction and recovery, with a mission of providing a space where people can heal from addiction and other disorders in a compassionate, creative, open-minded, and heart-centered environment. We believe recovery is always possible. Our experts work with you to design a treatment plan that fits your needs. Common treatment programs include:

  • Intensive Outpatient Programs (IOP)
  • On-site Detox
  • Full-time Addiction Treatment on campus
  • Mental Health Treatment
  • Aftercare Services

Contact us today for more information about how our programs and services can help you get your life back on track. You no longer have to struggle with an eating disorder on your own. We are here to help. 

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