Addiction Recovery

Facing the Fear of Admitting You Need Addiction Treatment Help

Fear holds us all back. By removing your denial about your substance use disorder, you will free yourself of the fear of admitting you need help.

Facing the Fear of Admitting You Need Addiction Treatment Help

Table of contents

Written by

Brian MooreBrian Moore

Content Writer

Reviewed by

Jeremy ArztJeremy Arzt

Chief Clinical Officer

February 2, 2022

The Edge Treatment Center

When you struggle with overwhelming issues that require a significant life change, you may not know where to start. Facing a behavior's damage to your physical, mental, and spiritual health is daunting. Letting go of fear is the first step to admitting you need help but can be especially difficult when you're dealing with a substance use disorder (SUD).

Holding on to Denial

Denying you have a SUD is a way of protecting yourself from distressing emotions or accountability. It's hard to admit you have a problem. When you deny a complex issue like substance addiction, you avoid taking responsibility for any harmful actions you may have taken because of it and downplay or alter the reality of your SUD. 

You can continue to deny you have a problem with alcohol or drugs for a short or extended period, but, despite your denial, there will come a time when you can no longer ignore the effects alcohol or drugs have on your life. These might be damaged relationships, lost jobs, or risky behaviors. Eventually, your attempts to deceive yourself will wear thin.

A few signs of denial are:

  • Hiding addictive behaviors

  • Making excuses for your behavior

  • Playing the victim and blaming others 

  • Attempting to minimize the consequences of your actions

Stages of Getting Help

The following are the six stages of change, as they relate to SUDs:

  • Pre-contemplation: During this stage, you are not willing to see yourself as having a problem that needs help.

  • Contemplation: As it becomes harder to deny you have an alcohol or drug issue, you begin to think about your substance use and its impact on your life. You may start to reach out to others for help during this stage. Often, loved ones are aware of your SUD and want to help you.

  • Preparation: When you reach this stage, you're ready to start searching for information about substance addiction and how to treat it. This stage is another opportunity to involve your loved ones. Ask them to help you research substance addiction, underlying causes, and what you can do to start healing. Go over the results and decide what you think will work for you. 

  • Action: This stage marks the beginning of your substance addiction treatment. When you enter a substance addiction treatment center, you open yourself up to hope. When you're ready, you can involve your loved ones in your treatment by inviting them to participate in family therapy or trusting them to be an accountability structure.

  • Maintenance: After you complete a substance addiction treatment program, you will return to your home environment and work on maintaining your recovery. Recovery is challenging. Returning to the people and places from your past includes facing your actions and behaviors. You may realize you need to rid yourself of toxic relationships. Use your support network to guide you through obstacles and difficulties.

  • Relapse: Relapse isn't uncommon, and if you do relapse, it's okay to start again. Admitting to others that you relapsed presents a different obstacle. How do you tell those who support your recovery you relapsed? Don't fall into the trap of denial again. Talk to your support network or invite them to a therapy session. 

Admitting You Need Help

When you admit you need help, you're making yourself vulnerable. Substance addiction treatment is an incredibly difficult thing to admit you need, but that vulnerability will serve you well in the long term. Achieving such big goals is often only possible when you receive assistance at some point.

As you know, taking the first step is challenging and you may have questions. Your questions about addiction and treatment are essential, and you have the right to ask. Likewise, asking a loved one for help in a time of crisis is logical and intelligent. 

A vital part of letting go of your fear of seeking help is pushing past denial and letting go of your pride. Pride blocks you from acknowledging you can't do everything by yourself. If you try to do it yourself, anxiety can take over.

You might:

  • Worry what others think of you

  • Be nervous about the thought of failing

  • Doubt yourself

  • Become stressed about perceived imperfections

  • Fear you are a fraud, and others will notice 

People can't support you through your time of need if you don't admit you have a problem. Once you move past hiding and denying, you're ready to take the essential steps in asking for help.

Asking For Help

When you let fear hold you back, you also keep yourself from experiencing your best life. There are effective strategies to ask for help and achieve your goal of addiction recovery, including:

  • Vanquishing the obstacles to substance addiction treatment is tough if you don't know what's holding you back. Write down what triggers you and share your triggers with others.

  • Stay true to yourself. Fall back on your positive behaviors to let others in. Then, while freeing yourself from denial, open yourself up to guidance and care.

  • Think of asking for help as acting on behalf of your physical and mental well-being. 

Releasing Yourself From Fear Is A Process

While you may not feel comfortable acknowledging your substance use disorder, the alternative is letting it continue to disrupt your life. Letting go of denial before an incident occurs that irreparably harms you or others is essential. Inviting people to support you as you receive treatment for alcohol or drug addiction is a strength. Your loved ones want you to live a healthy, happy life.

The Edge Treatment Center makes it possible to achieve your dreams and live the life you are meant to live. Ask us about our services, call (800) 778-1772.

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