For friends and family of a meth addict

Courtesy of the greater dallas council on alcohol & drug abuse — Do’s and Don’ts for the family and friends of a meth addict. This is such great advice; I truly believe that anyone who is affected by meth addiction because of a family member or friend should take this list of do’s and don’ts to heart.



… talk to someone who understands drug addiction.

… learn the facts about Meth addiction.

… develop an attitude to match the facts.

… go to Nar-Anon, Al-anon and/or seek professional help.

… learn about yourself, your needs, desires, reactions and behavior patterns.

… maintain a healthy and consistent atmosphere in your home as much as possible.

… take care of your needs and let the addict take care of their needs.

… share your knowledge with others.

… be committed to your own growth, health, and life goals – be constructively self-caring.


… preach and lecture to the addict.

… make excuses for the addict.

… make threats you won’t carry out.

… believe that you are the cause of the other person’s drug addiction.

… suffer for the addict.

… protect the addict from drug situations whether using or in a program of recovery.

… make an issue over the addict’s choice of treatment. Like you, they have the right to choose what they want.

… rescue – let the addict clear up their own mistakes and assume the responsibility for the consequences of their using behavior.


A letter from a child meth addict:

Dear Mom and Dad,

I am a drug abuser. I need help.

Don’t solve my problems for me. This only makes me lose respect for myself.

Don’t lecture, moralize, scold, blame or argue whether I’m stoned. It may make you feel better, but it only makes the situation worse.

Don’t accept my promises. The nature of my illness prevents my keeping them even though I mean them at the time. Promises are only my way of postponing pain.

And don’t keep switching agreements;if an agreement is made, stick to it.

Don’t loose your temper with me. It will destroy you and any possibility of helping me.

Don’t let your anxiety for me make you do what I should do for myself.

Don’t believe everything I tell you. Often I don’t even know the truth let alone tell it.

Don’t cover up or try to spare me the consequences of my using. It may reduce the crisis, but it will make my illness worse.

Above all, don’t run away from reality as I do. Drug dependence, my illness, gets worse as my using continues.

Start now to learn, to understand, to plan for your own recovery. Find Families Anonymous, Nar-Anon, Al-Anon or CoDa; those groups exist to help people in just your situation.

I need help – from a doctor, a psychologist, a counselor, from some people in a self-help program who are in recovery from a drug problem themselves and from a Power greater than myself.


Your “User”

  • butterfly1984

    I dont know if anyone will soon this anytime soon but I would like to ask a question. I recently found out that my boyfriend is addicted to meth. I was extremely shocked, sad, disappointed and angry and I kicked him out of our home. He is now staying with his Mom and has an appt to talk to his dr about a treatment program but he is very depressed right now and says it would be easier on him if he could come back home and be with me until he gets help. I think he needs to be out of his comfort zone of home and stay away until he truly gets help. I’m not sure what the best choice is in order to help him the most. Can anyone give me some advice? 

  • Spokanetax

    Hi there, I can tell you that I am going through the same thing with my, no ex, and it is a very grim and disgusting life that they live. You should NOT take him back in your home!!!! Do yourself a favor, and though it is soooooooooooooo damn hard, get over him. The first time you try that drug (for most) you are selling your soul. It is an addiction that is without a doubt the hardest thing to get over. He will take you down with him if you stay. My ex has been on a 3 week run and he has keys to my house and I can’t locate him to get them back, so I am a prisoner in my own home. He has come in when I wasn’t here today and stole my bike, all my toilet paper and numerous grocery items. He obviously is hurting. But he won’t stay home and come down, he returned to the drug house. As I write this, I am trying desperately to keep from cryin, but I have done sooo much of that in the last 2 years because this has been on-going. You have to take care of you. There are so many great men out there that do not use, and can offer you all that you want and at one time might have got from your current boyfriend. They have to hit the bottom, and even then, statistically, they never truly recover. They become criminals at that point and will do anything to get the drug. I gaurantee you that if he is using elsewhere, like in a drug house with other druggie women, he is sleeping with them. TRUST ME! Watch COPS. It’s real. The prostitutes they arrest are all addicts looking for a hit. It is easy to come by, and fucking hard to let go.

    Do it for you. Let go. Good Luck to you and know it is a choice. He can walk away if he isn’t too far into it.

  • Terrywolfbisbee

    That is not a real letter from a meth user. They don’t recommend treatment in 12 step programs. They say ‘I hate you. You are a bitch. You are a whore. You set me up. I am hungry and homeless and it’s your fault. Fxxk you. They don’t offer solutions. If you want to have a site that helps families of meth users, tell the truth, don’t make up a phoney letter that gives advice…

  • MJ

    This may sound cruel, but you should protect yourself.   He knew he was an addict and brought you into is life anyway.     Only he can change what he does.  Life is too short for you to waste time on someone with an obvious lack of respect for those around him.    Let his family help him.  Of course, he is depressed or he wouldn’t have turned to drugs in the first place.    If you truly care for him, let him go and help himself get better.     Live your life without him.  If and when he gets better, and you’re still available, maybe the two of you can be together.   Just don’t put you life on hold, hoping he will change or thinking you can change him.   It’s up to him.    Take care of yourself.  

    My brother is a meth addict.   We have a family business, so we are around each other often.    He’s become a horrible person over the years.   He is in his late 40’s.  I am in my mid 40’s.  He has messed with different drugs his entire life.  Our parents (divorced) refused to acknowledge his behavior.    I don’t think they knew what to do, so they did nothing.   He says hurtful things.  He’s paranoid.   He’s become a pathalogical liar.   He actually looks crazy some days.   He knows he is wrong, but he doesn’t care.   It has taken me a few years to realize that he just doesn’t care what he does to other people.   I have always felt sorry for him.  Made excuses in my mind for him.   He has ruined so many of my days.   I am contemplating leaving my family business because of his addiction.   I think he has permanent brain damage from the meth.  He has aged so much and is very underweight.   I still feel sorry for him, because he is my brother.   However, I cannot help him.   He has to help himself.     If your boyfriend reckonizes his addiction, then only he can overcome it.      TAKE CARE OF YOURSELF.     Love yourself, and find enjoyment in your life.

  • chunkky

    I went through the same stuff. The whole “you set me up”. Did he ever realize you didn’t set him up?

  • Karma Sucks

    Well looks like Im totaly fd in this, I used to love my crack and anything else, got over it along time ago.  The problem is that now I truly see the pain a family goes thru whe a loved one has an addiction. 

    I didnt cause it I cant cure it and I cant cotrol it, and I cant run away because I also know love and understand an addiction. 

    So this means that i get to sit back and watch as a 14 yr old boy destroys his life and drags my wife and me down too.  I get to sit back and watch because my words of wisdonm dont cary any weight, or i am to burnt out to try and help and respond in anger out of love.  That depends on the day I guess.

    In truth the mamby pamby treatment an addict goes thru is the food for the pity party and you get all the excuses you need to fail from those around you.  Family day comes around and the members f your family dont say what the feel because the are glad they have a break from your BS, they feel safe for short period of time.  All because they too love.  The addict needs to see just how much they despise their own being and existance.  Some need to stand up and go away and in my case go home after 30 years or so and then make amends.

    If your are an addict your life has become unmanageable (no shit) all of the ones you love are in the same boat as you and in recovery you have to make a choice, continue living a lie an suck on a glass “blank” or tear out your own heart and so it to all so you can see the true ugliness inside.

    That is what I am back at now is seeing that part of me, no i get to add guilt and so much pain, hopelessness, anger, denial, ect.  I also know the only thing that will help is the truth, its that simple because I started my addiction with a lie and covered up the truth with more lies.  So I just need to say please for yourself Acept the truth in you and the addict, there is darkness in both.  Heal your own darkness because you will be brought back to it someday in the future and you will need the strength.  And please everyone understand we are human and we were born to die I just want to die feeling like a kid again and have fun here and there 🙂


  • hurt

    Hi. I just found out my 20 yr old is using meth. He is a rewponsible young man. Has a good job, has a car and hasnt stopped working. We kicked him out because he doesnt think he has a problem. He is looking to rent a townhome and pays his bills. Doesnt yell at us. I am so lost right now. Dont know what to do as a parent. Do I text him and tell him to get help. He texts us simple things but never talks about his problem. It kills me inside when I read the road he is living. He started using to stay up for work because he works graveyard shifts.

  • christy

    Some may not agree with me on this but for me and my son…I fought for him…I never gave up on him…I wrote letters, poetry and left them in his car, praying he would read them..I was in contact with drug programs for any advice….I would never ask him to leave or even suggest it…I know everyone has their own way to handle things and some can’t cope with heartache…I listened to some of my loved ones trying to give me advice, telling me to turn my back on him, he was going to do what he wanted to anyway….I told them , “He is my son and I will never turn my back on him”…It nearly killed me to watch this evil thing take hold of my son…Do what you feel you can,.. let them know you love them….talk to other people that have the same problem… ,sometimes just being able to talk to others that are dealing with addiction of a loved one can do a world of good…..there are support groups that are wonderful …these people are there for a reason…they offer hope, and help to anyone that will receive it……I found a judge that offered some wonderful advice….Teen Challenge….it worked….it took a miracle…His name is Jesus Christ…..

  • christy

    I was talking to a friend about this page and she told me to not leave out this important part…Teen Challenge has churches that support the program and from time to time, Teen Challenge comes to their church and several of the students give their reason for being there, what they went through and how the program is helping them….find out where they will be and go listen for yourself….I learned so much from going and it may help someone else understand more about addiction and maybe how to help your loved one….I wrote a song about the journey my son took, his recouvery,and maybe someone will hear it and it may help them…I saved his letters while he was in the program, and all the poems I wrote him, now I am hoping to write a book using all the things I saved from this journey….now it seems like a lifetime away and still the pain is so real… has been four years since that trip and I learned so much, I still have people asking me about the nightmare that would not end…I see their pain, and their love for the person they are trying to save….I pray this helps someone…….

  • christy

    I need to add this to my post…Teen Challenge is not just for the young, anyone can apply for the program…..a bed may or may not be ready but they have a waiting list one can get on….that is the first step….get in a program….get serious about getting help…..GO

  • Carol Da Valle Strange

    That’s easy for you to say about an ex boyfriend. What about that person who is my brother and he & I were close growing up? It doesn’t work the same with your emotions when it’s your own blood dying in front of your eyes.

  • Damnit

    I agree with you. So why can’t drug companies create a drug to block the effects of methamphetamine? Shouldn’t there be a walk to save meth addicts or lobby to get the criminal system to focus on “long term” mandatory rehabs after being thrown in jail. Instead of the jails focusing on creating a communication system that screws family members who send money..

  • Diane Johnson

    That letter and that advice has been around for over 20 years. Before meth was even around and we had Heroin users. The only help for a meth addict is to lock them away and make them go cold turkey where they can’t hurt themselves or anyone else. I am a tough-love type of person. Been there done it with speed addicts, with heroin addicts and I can tell you this meth thing is nothing like the other addictions.

  • Believer

    Iam a meth addict.I want to quit meth. I have no support from the girl I love since 3 years. I know I have ruined a lot of things but I’m here to change. I’m taking help from a psychatrist also my family supports me. But she not supporting me only makes me feel more sick about my self. I recently tried overdosing just to die. How do I get her back. I was ready to improve myself. She says she dosnt care about me .

  • Nick

    U can’t just tell someone their boyfriend is hopeless and banging other women cause u saw it on cops , not everyone is the same or should they be steriotyeped when ur not really sure of the facts or know this person … Rite?

  • Dave Alstatt

    My son is dying, I’ve tried everything. I pray all the time for him, it’s killing me to watch him fade away.

  • Annie

    I am facing my son’s addiction. I always thought it happens to other families

  • Elizabeth Johnson

    I completely agree. There should be a walk to save meth addicts. My husband, soon to be ex, father of my child, is a meth addict. I have no idea where he is, how to reach him, if he’s even alive. He was a great guy before meth, but it took his soul. He’s been to rehab, but 3 days after he got home he went right back to it. It’s hard as hell for me to understand any of it because I’ve never been an addict and never touched the drug. I just wish I could understand. 🙁

  • fiona

    Hi cristy been reading what you have said, and has bought tears to me, im in the same situation, but i cant talk to my son, he is straight away yelling and screaming at us, im lost i dont know what to do, he has always liked with his grand mother for the past 8 yrs as he wanted to be her carer, but my mum passed away early this year, and left the house to me, which im selling, i have a property in queeensland where wew want our son to come, but he refuses, and gets abusive. what do i do.

  • molly

    God bless you for creating this blog. About a year and 1/2 ago, my ex husband at 55 years of age started doing meth(for the second time in his life…the first time was in his 20s)…left me, his 2 adult children, his father, uncle and a good friend and is now remarried to a meth addicted prostitute. Our divorce was final the end of June and he married this person in Dec. Unfortunately for him, he’s a wealthy man who used to be very successful in the music business. I’m finally coming out of the shock due to a year of therapy good friends and family. His children don’t communicate much as I believe it’s still too painful. I’ll always be here for them when they might need me. Their mom is a good support system for them.The only things you can do are “get professional help for yourself”, “stop trying to figure it out”,”and stop blaming yourself”. This drug is an evil demon. I’m starting a small group for families devastated by this horrible situation. Do you have any advice for me ?

  • Samantha Kessel

    Im trying to find a local support group for me/family members of a user.

  • Joe Ackerman

    My name is Joe I’m 55 years old……you are 100% right Christy!!! I’ve been there done that!! Fought a meth addiction for over 5 years and it ended in a 6 1/2 year federal prison sentence! I was clean a year and a half prior to going into prison. It was the hardest thing I ever had to quit and it had total control over my life!! The answer to finding the strength to over come it one day at a time was complete surrender to Jesus Christ!! He never gave up on me and He never gives up on any of us!! God gets ALL the glory for who I am today and the many restored relationships that he mended. I have the best relationship with my kids and family today then I ever had before!! I’m coming right up on 10 years clean from drugs and have no desire what so ever to ever go back…..not even a craving, ever!!! Praise God!! My advice to anyone that may be struggling with a meth addiction or any addiction and they really want help is get on your knees right now and ask Jesus to come into your life and take over. He will give you everything you need to overcome what you are going through!! Trust in Him!! Give Him your life and He will do things beyond your imagination!! One of my favorite verses that I reminded myself of everyday in prison was Philippians 4:13 which Paul wrote while in prison in chains…”I can do all things through Christ Who strengthens me” love that verse!! Notice it says “ALL” things, not just some!! I could go on and on and share more of my testimony and would be glad to if anyone wants to hear more you can email me at or private message me on facebook (Joe Ackerman in Great Falls, MT)

  • Gina

    is there any hope of my husbands sou being restored? I have read everything I can get my hands on and it gives me no hope at all