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Self-Pity Often Goes Hand In Hand With Addiction

Self-pity plays a part in the negative thinking patterns of substance abusers, and their family members tend to pick up the habit right along with them. As the grip of addiction takes hold, it sets a downward spiral of self-pity and depression in motion. Alcohol and many other drugs are depressants, which not only contribute to but also compound the problem. Self-pity often presents itself in the form of blame. Alcoholics and drug addicts who feel sorry for themselves because of the mess they are making of their lives blame everything and everyone outside of themselves.

  • “If you had a (wife, husband, mother, father) like mine, you would drink, too.”
  • “If your boss treated you like mine does, you would drink, too.”
  • “It’s too hard for me to make friends unless I go out drinking with people.”
  • “I can’t face the stress of my day without some wine to calm me down.”

With this kind of negative thinking in place, addicts and alcoholics not only refuse to take responsibility for their actions, they build up a storehouse of excuses in order to give themselves permission to continue drinking and using.

Families Not Immune To Negative Thinking And Self-Pity

Families of addicts and alcoholics are caught in an emotional whirlwind. They often believe the lies their loved ones tell them when they are under the influence. They fall into despair because they cannot fix the problem for the one they love. They make themselves sick with worry. This turmoil affects the self-esteem of every individual in the family. Low self-esteem breeds even more negativity. When family members feel victimized, they cannot see their way clear of the situation they are in. They cannot seem to find a solution, and their despair mounts. Only when family members detach themselves emotionally from the addict’s behavior can they begin to recover.

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