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Top 30 Addiction Quotes For Family

Addiction Quotes For Family

This post contains some of the best addiction quotes for family.

Addiction Quotes For Family

1. “…in a vast number of cases, it’s family members and friends who make the difference—who finally push addicts into seeking help and who support them in recovery.” – Thomas F. Harrison & Hilary S. Connery

2. “A good deal of the anger that family members feel is caused by emotional pain—the sense that the addict has betrayed them, has rejected them, and doesn’t love them anymore.” – Thomas F. Harrison & Hilary S. Connery

3. “Addiction is a family disease. When an addict gets sick, it’s not just the addict who gets sick. The entire family is affected in a profound way.” – Thomas F. Harrison & Hilary S. Connery

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4. “Addiction is also maddening for loved ones because they’re used to being able to influence a family member’s behavior. Typically, loved ones do everything they can think of to try to get the addict to quit, ranging from “a good long talk” to bargaining, pleading, shaming, yelling, wheedling, threatening, and punishing. Over time, they usually come to realize that none of these things works.” – Thomas F. Harrison & Hilary S. Connery

5. “Addiction is ravaging our society, killing thousands of innocent people and destroying the lives of many others, including the family and friends who so often bear the brunt of addicts’ problems.” – Thomas F. Harrison & Hilary S. Connery

6. “Addiction is scary, and many people resist coming to the conclusion that it’s affecting someone they love.” – Thomas F. Harrison & Hilary S. Connery

7. “Addiction is stressful for everyone in the family. The fact that the family dynamic has been disrupted is highly stressful in itself, as everyone has to cope with the changes.” – Thomas F. Harrison & Hilary S. Connery

8. “Although addiction affects people in every walk of life, many family members want to believe that their loved one is “not that sort of person.”” – Thomas F. Harrison & Hilary S. Connery

9. “Anyone who has ever dealt with a family member in the throes of an active addiction will probably tell you that it appears as though the person he or she knows and loves has somehow been replaced by an evil demon.” – Thomas F. Harrison & Hilary S. Connery

10. “As a family member or friend of an addict, you have a more objective lens through which to view the addiction than the addict has. But that’s only if you can step away from the situation and see it clearly.” – Robin Barnett

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11. “Because addiction is complicated, it can be difficult for family and friends to tell whether someone is truly addicted, especially in the early stages. It’s hard to believe that someone who can hold down a job, go without using when necessary, and seem normal most of the time can really have such a debilitating problem. And there’s no simple test that will give you a yes-or-no answer.” – Thomas F. Harrison & Hilary S. Connery

12. “But addiction can leave a lot of scars, and it can take an addict many months or years to relearn how to interact in the world in a fully healthy way. Difficult as it may be, family members who want to be supportive in recovery will need to take this fact into account.” – Thomas F. Harrison & Hilary S. Connery

13. “But very little attention is being paid to the home, where family members struggle every day to persuade addicts to get help, support them in their recovery efforts, and pick up the pieces of their own lives. And it’s in the home, among family members, where the battle against addiction will ultimately be lost or won.” – Thomas F. Harrison & Hilary S. Connery

14. “Family and friends are the true first responders; they’re the ones who are on the front lines of the battle, and who suffer the emotional wounds.” – Thomas F. Harrison & Hilary S. Connery

15. “Family members may go to enormous lengths to try to help an addict, and the addict never thinks of doing anything for them in return.” – Thomas F. Harrison & Hilary S. Connery

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16. “Family members of addicts are sometimes surprised to discover the extent to which they’ve neglected their own mental, emotional, and physical needs. Even people who’ve always had a healthy sense of boundaries can struggle to maintain them when an addiction enters their lives.” – Robin Barnett

17. “Family members who used to rely on the addict for everything from income to emotional support to chores around the house now have to deal with someone who may be erratic, self-centered, argumentative, unreliable, and distant, not to mention a source of constant drama and anxiety.” – Thomas F. Harrison & Hilary S. Connery

18. “If your loved one has been addicted for long, you know how his struggles can become a black hole, sucking up your family’s emotional, physical, and financial resources.” – Robin Barnett

19. “In many cases, a family member of an addict has no idea that other people (sometimes even a spouse, sibling, or child) have also been deeply affected by the addiction. Sharing stories with one another about your experiences can validate the pain and confusion of dealing with an addict.” – Robin Barnett

20. “Many addicts can keep it together in all aspects of their lives for a while. Some can even hide their use from the people who see them all day, every day. Sadly, family members tend to be the easiest to deceive, due to the level of trust inherent in most family units—and their desire not to believe the reality.” – Robin Barnett

21. “Many family members of addicts eventually experience a boywho-cried-wolf scenario. Years of drama and dishonesty make it difficult to know when someone is truly facing a life-threatening emergency.” – Robin Barnett

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22. “More than one family member has commented that the addict in their life was deserving of an Academy Award. “I can’t believe I fell for it,” they say. Addicts can act and pretend and dissemble as though their life depended on it—because, in their mind, it does.” – Thomas F. Harrison & Hilary S. Connery

23. “Sometimes addicts are very good at hiding their consumption. In such cases, what the family first notices are personality and behavioral changes. The person may become more irritable, short-tempered, lazy, distant, or defensive. The addict may stay out late, sleep late, or disappear. Only later does the family realize that a substance is causing the problem.” – Thomas F. Harrison & Hilary S. Connery

24. “That’s another reason addiction is such a bewildering illness: Family members often ask themselves, “How on earth did I not recognize it sooner?”” – Thomas F. Harrison & Hilary S. Connery

25. “The inability to stop the ongoing train wreck often leaves family members feeling hopeless, powerless, and frustrated. Sometimes they blame themselves. They also often feel personally rejected. “If she loved me, she’d quit,” they think.” – Thomas F. Harrison & Hilary S. Connery

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26. “When family members first begin to suspect that someone is an addict— when their life first starts to be disrupted—there can be a great deal of confusion and uncertainty.” – Thomas F. Harrison & Hilary S. Connery

27. “While the hole-in-the-soul idea can’t be proven scientifically, it’s surprising how often the concept resonates with family members of addicts.” – Thomas F. Harrison & Hilary S. Connery

28. “You’re a family member, not the addict’s lawyer or social worker or a paramedic (even if you happen to hold one of those jobs).” – Robin Barnett

29. “Many family members expect that when their loved one returns home, life will return to the way it was during happier times, before the addiction took hold. While it’s true that newfound sobriety is a wonderful development, it’s important to recognize that it won’t make everything perfect.” – Robin Barnett

30. “Reaching out to those who’ve gone through similar struggles, inside and outside of your family, is one of the most powerful things we can do in the face of addiction.” – Robin Barnett

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Addiction Recovery Worksheets (1)

How Addiction Can Affect A Family?

Addiction can have a profound impact on the family dynamic and relationships. It is often referred to as a “family disease” because it affects not only the individual struggling with addiction but also the entire family unit.

Here are some ways addiction can affect a family:

1. Emotional strain: Addiction can create a range of emotions within the family, including anger, fear, frustration, sadness, and guilt. Family members may experience emotional distress due to witnessing their loved one’s destructive behavior and feeling helpless or responsible for their addiction.

2. Breakdown of trust: Addiction can erode trust within a family. The person struggling with addiction may engage in deceptive or manipulative behaviors to hide their substance abuse, leading to broken promises, lies, and betrayal. This can cause deep wounds and strain relationships.

3. Codependency: Family members may develop codependent behaviors, meaning they enable the addicted individual by protecting them from consequences, making excuses for their behavior, or consistently rescuing them. Codependency can perpetuate the addiction and prevent the person from seeking help.

4. Financial difficulties: Addiction can result in financial strain for the entire family. Funds may be depleted due to the addicted person’s spending on substances, legal fees, or medical expenses. This can lead to financial instability, stress, and hardship for the family.

5. Neglect and role reversal: As addiction takes hold, family members may take on roles and responsibilities that the addicted person neglects. Children may assume caretaking responsibilities for their parents or siblings, leading to an unhealthy imbalance and disruption to their own development.

6. Communication breakdown: Addiction often disrupts healthy communication within a family. Open and honest communication becomes compromised as family members may avoid discussing the addiction, keep secrets, or communicate in dysfunctional ways. This breakdown in communication can hinder problem-solving and increase tension.

7. Impact on children: Growing up in a household affected by addiction can have long-lasting effects on children. It can lead to emotional, behavioral, and psychological issues, such as anxiety, depression, low self-esteem, or even their own substance abuse problems later in life.


It is important for families affected by addiction to seek support through therapy, support groups, or educational programs.

Family therapy can help address and heal the underlying issues caused by addiction, rebuild trust, improve communication, and promote healthy coping strategies for all family members involved.


  • Portions of this article were adapted from the book The Complete Family Guide To Addiction, © 2019 by Thomas F. Harrison & Hilary S. Connery. All rights reserved.
  • Portions of this article were adapted from the book Addiction In The House, © 2016 by Robin Barnett. All rights reserved.

By Hadiah

Hadiah is a counselor who is passionate about supporting individuals on their journey towards mental well-being. Hadiah not only writes insightful articles on various mental health topics but also creates engaging and practical mental health worksheets.

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