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Books About Addiction for Loved Ones

Addiction can destroy a person’s life, but it is usually not just the person with the substance use disorder (SUD) who suffers. Often, loved ones are dragged along for the ride and can face a rollercoaster of emotions as they try to navigate this confusing and draining situation.

Books About Drug Addiction for the Concerned Loved One

Many loved ones have questions about what to say or how to act around the person with the SUD. Others may not fully understand addiction and want to know more. With so many questions, it is natural to not know where to turn or who to ask for help. Fortunately, there are several books about addiction that can offer guidance and support on helping someone with a substance use disorder as well as helping yourself.

Addict in the Family: Stories of Loss, Hope, and Recovery
by Beverly Conyers

One of the best addiction books for loved ones who are struggling to cope with their situation, Addict in the Family: Stories of Loss, Hope, and Recovery is a collection of various people’s experiences when dealing with an addicted loved one. The book combines actionable advice on what to do or what not to do with the emotional telling of lessons learned to provide a comprehensive guide for loved ones.

The book not only reminds families that they are not alone but also provides people with hope and understanding as they try to navigate their own situation.

Addict in the House: A No-Nonsense Family Guide Through Addiction and Recovery
by Robin Barnett

Addiction is often described as a family disease, but few families know exactly how to deal with their addicted loved one. Drawing on her own experiences with her addicted brother, Barnett’s book focuses on the dos and don’ts for families of addicted individuals. Her book touches on topics like codependency, enabling behaviors, and dealing with relapse.

While her straightforward guide can seem unforgiving at times, it can help families take an honest look at their own situation and the best way to help their struggling loved one.

Beautiful Boy: A Father’s Journey Through His Son’s Addiction
by David Sheff

A memoir, Beautiful Boy: A Father’s Journey Through His Son’s Addiction tells the story of one parent’s experience with his child’s addiction. Sheff watched as his son Nic transform from dedicated student and loving son to a homeless and addicted stranger. The book takes readers through Sheff’s experience from the first signs of trouble to anxiously trying to get his son meth addiction treatment.

A book for parents of substance abusers, Sheff’s story can remind parents that while it may feel like it sometimes, they are not alone. Sheff asks a lot of the same questions and battled with the same mixed emotions that many parents deal with in a similar situation.

Unbroken Brain: A Revolutionary New Way of Understanding Addiction
by Maia Szalavitz

Taking a research-based approach, Szalavitz’s book about drug addiction removes emotions from the picture and instead focuses on the science behind addiction and recovery. She doesn’t look at addiction as a crime or a result of a broken brain but rather classifies it as a learning disorder that is a cumulation of several different factors. Szalavitz also challenges outdated treatment methods and argues for the importance of individualized care.

This book is an educational non-fiction book on addiction for those already riding this emotional rollercoaster but wanting to better understand the science behind addiction and how they and their loved one ended up in this position.

Codependent No More: How to Stop Controlling Others and Start Caring for Yourself
by Melody Beattie

While this is not a book solely about addiction, many people with an addicted loved one become so focused on how they can help their loved one that they neglect to take care of themselves. Beattie not only explains this concept of codependency but also provides a road map on how to break yourself of this bad habit with exercises and self-help worksheets.

While books about addiction can be helpful, they won’t make your loved one better. If you believe your loved one may be ready for treatment, but aren’t sure what about next steps, let us help. Our admissions navigators are available around the clock by phone and text to offer guidance. Reach out today.