Have you ever been told, "You just need to get to an al-anon meeting"? If you know me, you know that I'm a fan of ANY way to get recovery so let me be clear, I'm not knocking Al-Anon.
With that being said, one of the biggest frustrations that I hear from families when they're trying to get help for their addicted loved one is someone telling them to go to the AL-ANON meetings. I know people think they're being helpful, but honestly, it feels insulting.
If you're wanting to give someone advice, let me give you some tips and strategies for someone that is going through this.
1. Ask more questions either for yourself to fully understand the situation or to help the other person clarify what's going on.
2. Validate their feelings, if you were in their situation you would probably feel similar to how they feel.
3. Relate to their situation. Help them feel like you've been there before which makes them feel not alone and connected.
4. Tell them the reason you like al-anon or something you've learned from it or how you found it helpful.
5. If your initial reaction to the idea of going to an Al-anon meeting is that you’d rather have to break your leg… go anyway and know that your addicted love one feels the same way about attending meetings and being in treatment.
My advice is to try all ways to recovery until you find one that sticks and is helpful to your particular situation.
Smart Recovery(Specific, Measurable, Achievable, Relevant, and Time) is another option. It's more focused on education and practical advice.