11. It helps me to cope. I can't manage without it
The sad part of this statement is that the addict is now trying to justify their use and give excuses for acting out. They may even be creating unnecessary drama just to support this dialogue and then use the situation to attempt to convince you of the importance of their continued use of their addictive behaviours or substances.
12. I cannot be "Me" without it
Another very common belief by the addict is that they’re actually unable to function, socialise or perform their duties in work, family or society without their addiction. The dangerous part of this belief is that the more they believe this, the more they will extend their dependency upon it, which does underline their genuine dependency on it to engage. It’s a never-ending spiral into deeper and darker addiction.
13. I need it to be creative.
This is a common lie that addicts genuinely believe. They credit their previous success with the creativity their earlier experiments with their addictive behaviours or substances gave them. This is delusional and can be a tough stance to overcome. What is usually required is sober evidence that they can achieve the same results (or better) whilst addiction free. This social proof can be the persuader.
Now we’re in straight forward denial mode. Instead of dealing with whatever stress and anxiety they have going on in their life, the addict tries to cover up their feelings by engaging in their addiction, which unfortunately only ever seems to make matters worse. But the addict cannot see this. They see the feelings of relief they temporarily receive and not the actual problem that’s causing the stress and anxiety to begin with. The main challenge is that the stress and anxiety still remain after the addict has engaged and so they re-engage further into their addiction, incorrectly believing that it’s helping the situation.
15. It doesn't change me. I'm still me
In contrast to the previous point, this time the addict's denial is flipped as they fail to see how they've changed or evolved over time due to their addiction. Addiction is a selfish pursuit and naturally it changes someone as they become self-obsessed and pre-occupied with their addiction, spending less time focusing on others and more time wrapped up in their own "wants and requirements". In reality, the more severe the addiction, the more dramatic the personality changes.
16. It helps me be a better person.
To justify their addiction they will begin saying that without their addictive process, behaviour or substance that they are more angry, frustrated, anxious, depressed, and stressed. Usually this is clearly not the case, but only those around the addict can see this. What they see is the addict’s aggression, frustration, depression and unsettlement is actually being reinforced by the addiction.
17. This is none of your business
Addicts tend to become weirdly possessive of their addiction, be it to substances or behaviours. It could be compared to an illicit love affair which is deep and entrenched, and yet also secretive and discrete. This may begin to explain why they can become agitated and aggressive under certain circumstances, particularly if they perceive you as trying to take their addiction away. The anger is used to attempt to scare you away from getting involved in something they tell you is none of your business.
18. It's not effecting you
Once the addict has been confronted, they will attempt to minimise any harms caused to others by exclaiming how their "challenges" only affect themselves and doesn’t hurt anyone else. Even in situations where this may be true from a logistical point of view, the emotional turmoil the addict causes their loved ones is incredibly high, but in most cases they are also genuinely hurting their loved ones in a real way, but without noticing so much because the nature of their addiction turns them into selfish, self-centred people who simply cannot see the world outside of their own needs, at least when it comes to their addiction. Furthermore, despite all this, they are still harming themselves in ways usually beyond measure.
19. I'm still working, so I can't be that bad.
In their continued efforts to prove to everyone around them that they have their addiction under control, the best story they will present is the differences between themselves and a park bench tramp or street homeless person. Maintaining a job or their business is the obvious point they will use to claim some sort of moral high ground. Unfortunately, addiction doesn’t discriminate between who it afflicts based upon their means or their lifestyle or any other factor. It takes people seemingly randomly as much as it takes people who come from generations of challenges families. Most of the addicts existing on the planet are functioning addicts meaning that they are able to function during the day and hold themselves together for much of their daily duties.
20. The kids don't know, so it's okay
Another common case of self-denial is the addict's belief that their children don't know or haven't noticed any change in their behaviour. But kids are very sensitive and can feel the change in vibes or energy in a family home. These children are observant and are in the copy and mimic stage of their development, so they try to replicate the behaviours of their parents, meaning that any level of addiction is imprinting poor attitudes upon their children. Essentially the addict really is putting their children future long term happiness in jeopardy.
If any or even many of these examples of denial, deceit or deflection are sounding true in your own scenario, then please do get in touch with us and discuss how we can best help you with a Sober Intervention and assisting your loved one into treatment.